Filmmaker

Articles from Vol. 19, No. 1, Fall

All EYES ON ME
LENA DUNHAM and CAVEH ZAHEDI are among a surprisingly small group of filmmakers who make themselves the subjects of their own films. Whether it's a man dealing with his sexual urges (Zahedi's I Am A Sex Addict) or a girl searching for her place in a...
Beams of Light
The biggest premiere at the 2010 Toronto International Film Festival was not a film but a building. After years of planning, North America's largest film museum, containing five theaters, galleries, common areas and restaurants, opened the first weekend...
Bridging Past and Future
LINE ITEMSDAVID LEITNER TESTS OUT THE ARRI ALEXA.The time frame needed to produce an independent feature these days can seem longer than the lifespan of its underlying technology. Cheap HDSLRs challenge high-end camcorders that cost 50 times more. Even...
Color Enhancements
LINE ITEMSROBERTO QUEZADA-DARDON LEARNS WHY DIGITAL INTERMEDIATE HAS BECOME AN ESSENTIAL TOOL FOR FILMMAKERS.In one sense a digital intermediate, or a "DI," is the data stored on a computer that will produce an accurately colored negative from which...
Criticism for the Netflix Era
"A Netflix copy of They Live plays behind these words as I type," writes Jonathan Lethem in his new book-length study of John Carpenter's 1988 sci-fi satire. Indeed, throughout all the playful scholarship and cultural allusion Lethem brings to his study...
Editor's Letter
There's that old joke about the guy who walks out of a bar and sees a drunk man stumbling around under a street light. "What are you doing?" the guy asks. "I'm looking for my keys." "Where'd you lose them?" "Over there," the drunk guy says, pointing...
Eight Things That Will Keep You in the Know
1 WHO'S THAT LOOKIN' THROUGH MY WINDOW? The camera can be both an expressive tool of communication as well as a ruthless invader of personal space. An increasing presence in modern life, cameras and surveillance video catch those who might otherwise...
Fraud ALERT
CHARLES FERGUSON follows up his hard-hitting Iraq War documentary, No End in Sight, with another investigative look at a complicated and controversial subject: the global economic crisis. In Inside Job, Ferguson indicts the growth of the banking industry...
Indie Spirit/mainstream Appeal
I first met Richard Lemarchand at a Games for Change conference three years ago, and I thought, "What are you doing here?"Don't get me wrong. Games for Change is open to everyone. It's a lovely little conference focusing on documentary games and the...
Letters to a Young Producer
ELEVEN INDUSTRY VETERANS OFFER ADVICE TO THOSE JUST STARTING OUT... AND REVEAL HOW THEY'VE ADJUSTED THEIR OWN PRODUCING MODELS TO FIT THE TIMES.BARRY MENDEL (Producer, Whip It, Munich, Rushmore, The Sixth Sense)ADVICE I have three pieces of advice to...
New Model Army
LINE ITEMSMaking a business out of independent film is harder than ever. But still, great films are being made. In this series of short profiles, Filmmaker asked a number of leading independent producers about their producing models and how they're finding...
Poetry in Motion
Since his 1990 breakthrough Short of Breath, San Francisco-based filmmaker Jay Rosenblatt has honed a particular film aesthetic, a form more related to poetry and essays than traditional film narrative. Combining found footage, poignant spoken narratives...
Rebooting the Doc Experience
The year is 2012 and the world is on the brink of collapse. Rolling blackouts, depleted resources, civil unrest, assassinations and political dissension have thrown the world into a state of chaos. We follow the adventures of a group of young people...
Sound Advice
The business of independent film may be uncertain, but the business of helping people make and release independent films still thrives. In this down economy, consultants, panels, conferences, magazines (like this one) and books still speak to everyone's...
Tackling the Future of Film
IFP's Independent Film Week is neither a festival nor a market but rather a forum that connects filmmakers with the funders, programmers and other industry leaders who can help them take their projects forward. Independent Film Week has been around in...
The Way WE WERE
In this brutally beautiful look at a married couple (played by Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams) falling in and out of love, co-writer-director DEREK CIANFRANCE looks back on the breakup of his own parents to capture the reality that two people go...
This Gun for Hire
Both a Cannes sensation and a hit television miniseries in France, OLIVIER ASSAYAS's Carlos, an incisive and exciting look at left-wing mercenary Ilich Ramírez Sánchez and the political culture that sustained him, now comes Stateside.One of the wonderful...
Toronto International Film Festival
The Canadians do not have a term like our "John Hancock." The word "signature" suffices. Whatever you call it, it's the most reliable guide to what is genuine, and mostly high-quality, festival fare in Toronto. TIFF has a brilliant tradition of employing...
TURN Out
Returning to the darkly suspenseful storytelling of films like p and Requiem for a Dream, DARREN ARONOFSKY's latest Black Swan is a seductive thriller that follows a driven ballerina, Nina (Natalie Portman), as she prepares to dance the lead in the classic...
Veteran Indie Producers Rethink the Specialty Model
One of the major developments of the indie-film meltdown has been the winnowing of the high-profile prestige film. Developed, produced and or at least distributed by the studio specialty divisions, and with budgets allowing for top-tier talent, these...
WHEN I Get out OF HERE
Coming off his Oscar-winning film Slumdog Millionaire, DANNY BOYLE's 127 Hours retraces the harrowing ordeal of canyoneerer Aron Ralston (played by James Franco), who was trapped by himself for five days in the mountains of Utah.When Werner Herzog made...
Wolfe @ 25
LINE ITEMSPETER BOWEN CHECKS IN ON LGBT TASTEMAKER WOLFE VIDEO AS IT HITS 25 YEARS IN THE BUSINESS.In 1985, Kathy Wolfe started up a little company to distribute the lesbian-interest documentaries she was making. Twenty-five years later, Wolfe Video...