Movie City Indie Archive for August, 2009

Helen Keller 1930 Vitaphone newsreel

Those eyes.

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Trailering Nicholas Winding Refn's Bronson

The cost of "free": how can films keep being financed?

Brian Newman, former CEO of the Tribeca Film Institute, ponders: “With the ease of “frictionless” access to media online, how will any production costs be paid for? “The Internet is a super-distribution machine that allows copies of digital media to flow in an almost frictionless way. As the wealth and survival of traditional media businesses are built on selling precious copies, the free flow of free copies is undermining the established order. If reproductions of media are free, how can we keep on financing films and how can we find value in the media we create and sell?”


Indie is interviewing


Trailering Jared Hess' Gentlemen Broncos

Polish poster for All That Jazz


Free-associating through search engines and websites for a particular European film poster gave no joy but this Polish poster for Bob Fosse’s All That Jazz? It’s the movie, with a little less Jessica Lange, a little less open-heart. Story goes Polish illustrators almost never saw the movies before making the posters, which may be a good thing, especially in a fine case like this.

While I Was Away…

Wow. 350,000+ views in seven days. Word gets around… If you haven’t seen it, you may have feared it. By Toronto writer Jay David.

Hope and Vachon continue the indie conversation with Rockwell and Giamatti

I’ve been late posting anything about this series of short videos, but producers Ted Hope and Christine Vachon’s conversations about what-is-indie are nice’n’chewy.

Cart: The Film, by Jesse Rosten

Cart – The Film by Jesse Rosten on Vimeo.

Ever wonder how abandoned shopping carts end up where they do?

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Trailering Lemonade: when ad jobs go dry

From director Mark Colucci and writer Erik Proulx, an upcoming feature interviewing former advertising hotshots. From the website: “More than 70,000 advertising professionals have lost their jobs in this “Great Recession.” Lemonade is about what happens when people who were once paid to be creative in advertising are forced to be creative with their own lives.”

A midday smoke break with a colleague

There’s copyright and there’s courtesy and there’s blogging: if you’ve happened across a clumsily cropped version of this unguarded portrait (it’s not posed) of Movieline’s S. T. VanAirsdale from Sundance 2009 on any film websites, I’ll just note it’s mine and everywhere I’ve posted it, the sites have copyright notices. A link back or a credit are always appreciated—that’s the ideal of publishing and sharing work on the internet—but then again, there is the occasional blogger who compulsively cuts-and-pastes hundreds of words from the work of others far beyond legal and moral notions of “fair use,” making even the occasionally proffered link superfluous. It’s hardly worth complaining.

Alfred Hitchcock is 110


Indie is screening and screenering


A view of the nine-eyed perspective of Google Street View


Montreal artist Jon Rafman talks about his collection of remarkable images found while tooling along the byways of Google Street View: “One year ago, I started collecting screen captures of Google Street Views from a range of Street View blogs and through my own hunting. This essay illustrates how my Street View collections reflect the excitement of exploring this new, virtual world. The world captured by Google appears to be more truthful and more transparent because of the weight accorded to external reality, the perception of a neutral, unbiased recording, and even the vastness of the project. At the same time, I acknowledge that this way of photographing creates a cultural text like any other, a structured and structuring space whose codes and meaning the artist and the curator of the images can assist in constructing or deciphering.” [Essay here.]

Movie City Indie

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“Roger Ebert claimed that the re-editing of The Brown Bunny after Cannes allowed him a difference of opinion so vast that he first called it the worst film in history and eventually gave it a thumbs up. This is both far fetched and an outright lie. The truth is, unlike the many claims that the unfinished film that showed at Cannes was 24 minutes shorter than the finished film, it was only 8 minutes shorter. The running time I filled out on the Cannes submission form was arbitrary. The running time I chose was just a number I liked. I had no idea where in the process I would actually be when I needed to stop cutting to meet the screening deadline. So whatever running time was printed in the program, I promise you, was not the actual running time. And the cuts I made to finish the film after Cannes were not many. I shortened the opening race scene once I was able to do so digitally. After rewatching the last 4 minutes of the film over and over again, somewhere within those 4 minutes, I froze the picture and just ended the film there, cutting out everything after that point, which was about 3 minutes. Originally in the salt flats scene, the motorcycle returned from the white. I removed the return portion of that shot, which seemed too literal. And I cut a scene of me putting on a sweater. That’s pretty much it. Plus the usual frame here, frame there, final tweaks. If you didn’t like the unfinished film at Cannes, you didn’t like the finished film, and vice versa. Roger Ebert made up his story and his premise because after calling my film literally the worst film ever made, he eventually realized it was not in his best interest to be stuck with that mantra. Stuck with a brutal, dismissive review of a film that other, more serious critics eventually felt differently about. He also took attention away from what he actually did at the press screening. It is outrageous that a single critic disrupted a press screening for a film chosen in main competition at such a high profile festival and even more outrageous that Ebert was ever allowed into another screening at Cannes. His ranting, moaning and eventual loud singing happened within the first 20 minutes, completely disrupting and manipulating the press screening of my film. Afterwards, at the first public screening, booing, laughing and hissing started during the open credits, even before the first scene of the film. The public, who had heard and read rumors about the Ebert incident and about me personally, heckled from frame one and never stopped. To make things weirder, I got a record-setting standing ovation from the supporters of the film who were trying to show up the distractors who had been disrupting the film. It was not the cut nor the film itself that drew blood. It was something suspicious about me. Something offensive to certain ideologues.”
~ Vincent Gallo

“I think [technology has[ its made my life faster, it’s made the ability to succeed easier. But has that made my life better? Is it better now than it was in the eighties or seventies? I don’t think we are happier. Maybe because I’m 55, I really am asking these questions… I really want to do meaningful things! This is also the time that I really want to focus on directing. I think that I will act less and less. I’ve been doing it for 52 years. It’s a long time to do one thing and I feel like there are a lot of stories that I got out of my system that I don’t need to tell anymore. I don’t need to ever do The Accused again! That is never going to happen again! You hit these milestones as an actor, and then you say, ‘Now what? Now what do I have to say?'”
~ Jodie Foster