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Category: Artist Spotlight

Aaron Brookner Celebrates A Beloved Family Member And A Bygone New York In ‘Uncle Howard’

Director Howard Brookner made his initial mark on the cinematic landscape in 1983 with Burroughs: The Movie, a widely praised look at legendary beat generation writer William S. Burroughs, which also served as a document of New York’s fabled downtown scene during what many consider its artistic heyday. Brookner’s follow-up was another acclaimed non-fiction film, 1986’s Robert Wilson and the Civil Wars, about the famed theater director.

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Interview: Richard Tanne Takes Viewers on a First Date with the Obamas in ‘Southside with You’

First dates can be awkward, but they often make for fascinating cinema. In the tradition of Richard Linklater’s Before Sunrise and Andrew Haigh’s Weekend, Southside With You follows two young people getting to know one another as audiences get a chance to learn about them.
What distinguishes writer-director Richard Tanne’s first feature from the pack is the protagonists here are 26-year-old attorney Michelle Robinson (Tika Sumpter), who is rather reluctantly squired around Chicago one summer afternoon with her firm’s new associate, 28-year-old Barack Obama (Parker Sawyers).

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Cinematic Experiments: Michael Almereyda Is Back With Heady Psych Drama ‘Experimenter’

The main character in Michael Almereyda’s new film, Experimenter, is a social psychologist, moral thinker, innovator, and filmmaker. While it would be too convenient and reductive to draw too solid a line between Stanley Milgram, author of the still enlightening, still controversial “obedience experiments” and the director, it’s not hard to see why an artist of Almereyda’s intellect and formal dexterity would be attracted to his story. Among many other things, Milgram was interested in what people are capable of doing to one another and why, how they respond to authority, how they form communities, how they manage to morally justify their actions and their lives—matters of supreme interest to a dramatist and director of actors by trade.

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Vincent Cassel Is a Well-Intentioned Cult Leader in ‘Partisan’

Transitioning from short films to features is treading a familiar, tried and true path for filmmakers. But there’s a rare tribe of filmmakers who pass through the selection gauntlet to place a film in the Sundance Film Festival shorts program, and then prevail over another, equally daunting competition to do the same for a feature film. To achieve that, you must be doing something right.

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Q&A: Coming of Age with Sky Ferreira

At one point during our recent conversation, Sky Ferreira empathized with Lorelei Linklater, daughter of director Richard Linklater and an actress in his Oscar-winning drama Boyhood. The parallels proved uncanny to the 23-year-old singer, who heard the story of Lorelei bawling her way through her first viewing of the film. It was a reaction to reliving her coming-of-age—including, in its entirety the “awkward phase.

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5 Questions With Television Editor Erica Freed Marker

Erica Freed Marker is the recipient of the 2015 Sally Menke Memorial Editing Fellowship. The fellowship honors the memory of the beloved Sundance Institute mentor and prolific editor Sally Menke by supporting an emerging narrative editor’s understanding of craft, expanding their artistic community, and providing momentum to their editing career through participation in the Directors Lab and year-round mentorship from several accomplished editors. This year, Marker will work closely with Dylan Tichenor (co-editor, Zero Dark Thirty, The Town, There Will be Blood) and two other editing mentors.

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Alfonso Gomez-Rejon on Scorsese, Loss, and ‘Me and Earl and the Dying Girl’

Countless actors have been said to have a love affair with the camera, and the same can be said of filmmaker Alfonso Gomez-Rejon. He’s one of the few directors working today whose prowess behind the camera can leave viewers breathless yet it never overpowers the actors or storyline. His camera becomes a character and subtly comments on scenes with a sudden movement or unexpected angle, rather than overwhelming them.

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