Filmmaker is now out with its annual 25 New Faces, our picks of directors, writers, producers, editors and cinematographers who are exciting us right now. Click here to read this year’s list.
In August 2019, when Steven Soderbergh shot Let Them All Talk, COVID-19 was not on his mind, except to the degree that his research on Contagion (2011) had convinced him that a pandemic similar to the one depicted in the film was inevitable. And yet, one of the most compelling aspects of the workaholic director’s latest feature (streaming this Fall on HBO Max) is that the eight-day Atlantic crossing on the Queen Mary 2, during which most of the movie is set, now can be read as a metaphor for the necessarily transformational journey from before to after COVID. In […]
Six months ago, I was considering an update to my now biennial guide on how to prepare your film for festival exhibition. The 2018 version of that guide is available on the Filmmaker website and is a good reference if you are showing your film at a drive-in or outdoor screening that has a DCP server or some other file-based playback system. However, the majority of festival screenings happening this fall and into next year will be on virtual festival platforms. Pre-pandemic, I would’ve told you that the widespread adoption of a streaming component to festivals was as likely as […]
The following article was originally published in Filmmaker‘s Fall, 2020 print edition. We’re drowning in entertainment. Dozens of streamers, from mainstream catnip like Netflix and Disney+ to niche platforms like the Criterion Channel, each offer hundreds of feature films, limited series and TV shows. National theater chains like AMC and arthouse cinemas like the Alamo Drafthouse—at least before and hopefully after the pandemic—serve up fresh options every week on more than 40,000 screens. And legacy networks on basic cable, from NBC to TBS, continue to deliver a firehose of prerecorded content and live broadcasts every day. How to choose? Simple: […]
The following article on film-set COVID-19 safety departments was originally published in Filmmaker‘s Fall, 2020 print issue. When Heather Drake-Bianchi landed her first job as a COVID-19 compliance supervisor, the New York–based set medic didn’t realize the gravity of the responsibility she’d been given. “At first, I thought I was just going to be like a ’set medic plus,’ Drake-Bianchi said. “Then, on day one of the shoot, when we did the first morning safety briefing, one of the producers said, ’Just so everybody knows, whatever Heather says goes. She has the capacity to shut this entire shoot down.’” Drake-Bianchi’s […]
“My thinking is silly. My memories are preposterous. My ideas are laughable. I am a pompous clown. I can, on occasion, become aware of this. There are moments of clarity that I find all the more humiliating because I can see myself as others likely do, but I cannot control any of it. The pathetic, comical thought process continues, almost as if a script is playing out. Almost as if I myself am a puppet, defined by some external force, written to be the foil in some strange cosmic entertainment witnessed by someone somewhere. But who or what? And why? […]
The following interview with Darius Marder about Sound of Metal, currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video, was originally published in Filmmaker‘s Fall, 2020 print edition. Darius Marder’s Sound of Metal stars Riz Ahmed as Ruben, the drummer for a two-person heavy metal band who loses his hearing and, for much of the film, his perspective and sense of self as a result. His hearing falters and almost entirely disappears early in the film during the middle of a tour with his girlfriend/bandmate Lou (Olivia Cooke). Both are recovering addicts, and as their world is turned upside down, Lou fears Ruben […]