Magazine article Variety

Zemeckis Turns Lens on Sideshows

Magazine article Variety

Zemeckis Turns Lens on Sideshows

Article excerpt

Leslie zemeckis never set out to be a filmmaker. But now, with a second documentary about vaudeville performers ready to hit theaters June 27, she's found a niche - and a calling.

Her new movie, "Bound by Flesh," to be released day-and-date in cinemas and on VOD by Sundance Selects, tells the story of the Hilton sisters, Daisy and Violet, conjoined twins who toured the vaudeville and sideshow circuit in the 1930s. They set box office records and made a fortune, but were cheated out of their money by crooked managers. Zemeckis previously directed the 2010 burlesque docu "Behind the Burly Q."

"I became obsessed by these women and this form of entertainment," she says. In fact, she had earlier created and starred in a one-woman burlesque show herself, titled "Staar: She'd Rather Be a Mistress." As for the two docs' commonalities, she notes: "I'm fascinated by people who are marginalized or stigmatized. We dismiss a freak in a sideshow, we dismiss a stripper, without really knowing who these people are. …

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