In Mommy Dead and Dearest, provocative documentarian Erin Lee Carr (HBO’s Thought Crimes: The Case of the Cannibal Cop) explores a grisly tale where nothing is quite what it seems. Following Dee Dee’s brutal murder, a mysterious status ended up on her facebook page announcing “The bitch is dead,” which investigators used to track her daughter, Gypsy, to a house in Wisconsin. Gypsy, who had been ill and confined to a wheelchair for nearly her entire life, was the subject of much concern in their community. But once she was brought into the courthouse, everybody was shocked to discover that she could walk after all. The inspiring tale of a mother and her sick daughter turned into something much darker than anybody anticipated, with Gypsy a victim of one of psychology’s most controversial conditions: Munchausen by proxy. Carr digs deeper into this rabbit hole of deception with unprecedented access, and weaves a tale that proves that truth really is stranger than fiction. MOMMY DEAD AND DEAREST-Erin Lee Carr.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
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You are now listening to true murder, the most shocking killers and true crime history and the authors that have written about Gacy, Bundy Dahmer, the night stalker Dgk every week, another fascinating author talking about the most shocking and infamous killers, crime, history, room murder with your host journalist and author Dan. This is Nancy good evening in mommy dead and dearest, provocative documentary and Aaron Lee Car HBO's thought crimes. The case of the cannibal cop. Explorers at Grizzly Tale where nothing is quite what it seems: knowing DD's brutal murder, a mystery
this status to end up on her facebook page announcing the bitch is dead, which investigators you to track her daughter, Gypsy to a house in Wisconsin Gypsy had been ill and confined to a wheel. For nearly her entire life was the subject of much concern in their community, but once she was brought into the courthouse, everybody was shocked to discover that she could walk after all. Inspiring tale of a mother and her sick daughter turned into something darker than anybody anticipated with Gypsy, a victim of one of psychology's, most controversial conditions, money, one thousand by proxy car digs deeper into. This rabbit hole of deception with unprecedented access. In weaves, a tale that proves the truth really is is stranger than fiction. The subject tonight is the document documentary, Mommy dead and dearest, with my special guest Erin Lee Carr to
actor and writer Aaron Leak are welcome to the program, and thank you very much for this interview, Aaron Lee Car, wonderful, so happy to be talking with you. Thank you very much, very, very congratulations. Just to start on a very Very powerful and very poor vocative and very, very unique and interesting documentary. Now, let's get to how this came about you talk about your co producer, one of your co producers, Allison burn, so tell us how and when this came to be that you were interested in this story. How you came to be interested in this story. Tell us about that yeah. Of course so I made my first film for HBO called thought crimes, and it was you know it was this case about this guy. That was
that was convicted of conspiring to kidnap rape, torturing women. He did it on line, and so it was this really weird kind of unique intersection between crime in the internet following the release of that film, you know I wanted to stay in that space. I thought you know this it's interesting to me, and I think that I think there's a lot more to sort of uncover and investigate. And so I it was working with Allison, as you said, and we she was researching stories where people can fast online and Gypsy rose Blanchard. This case came up and when she started telling me about it, I thought it was sort of a joke. It didn't make sense I've never heard of anything like it and you know we just kind of sat and talked about it for an hour, and we sat on. I thought, catalog piece of an article written by a writer named Megan Pack and
we started the very, very slow, painful but ultimately successful process of trying to get people to speak with us, now when Allison spoke to you and your producer Andrew Rossi as well, when you discuss this What did you know? What was the outline of the story? Are you said you learn much more, obviously, and obviously what that's what this film is about, so tell us what you knew. What was that initial outline? That said this is fascinating. I've got to do this. That's a good question. I think that it just was the pure question that looms for me was: how could you is it human being uhm Tae any wheelchair- for fourteen years like what is what is that even mean if you're, psychologically sort of stuck in a chair?
how can find like you, don't even have access to your ex Is your body, so I just I just I didn't know really what to make of it, and I didn't know who checks you why she was sort of this site. Nobody knew how she sort of felt about it and you No, because I was able to work with the h b o, I have the confidence to reach out directly to her. Not talk about that. Do you corresponded with her in prison, but it she immediately was not. Be able to work with you. So tell us about this. Process how long this took. What was that process to be able to get access to her and be able to interview her? So basically we started a sorted out and, I wrote her a letter in prison in a sort of introduced myself and talked about the things that I'm interested in her case
and I remember I was at my apartment in Brooklyn and I got a letter back and I'm so excited and I have like a sort of a true, mission of like how I open these letters need to access letters I'm a little bit superstitious and I opened it- and you know in this this very sort of, you can write in. She wrote to me and she said hello, Miss Miss Erin. Thank you, much better interest. I really want to talk to you on pair crazy by the way and and she just said you know I'm going to talk to MIKE Stanfield and see you know how best to do this and I was so excited. I was like could it be that easy? I mean like you know that that was so quick and then, of course, a couple of days later. I received another letter from that in that similar handwriting and she said you know. I spoke with my lawyer, MIKE Stanfield, and now it's not the right time to talk at the time she was facing a potential death penalty. It was a death penalty case that
they were deciding- and you know I I understood I get you know still making and making television, and even you know if it's for h, yeah can't get in the way of legal. And so I have and to be added to the patient in figure out other ways to tell the story while waiting to see if I could get access to her. Now, let's go back for that for audience. That knows nothing about this story and you're introducing this story. It's going to be debuting May 15th on HBO on Monday on Monday, so very very soon now take us back to Springfield Mo Missouri and the crime itself. What was initially reported before we talk about the relate friendship that people saw them uh your daughter and what they thought of that relationship and what that those two
people, the mother and daughter presented as the sick child and the reasons for that. So take us back to Springfield Missouri and the crime scene itself before we go backwards for any kind of reasoning, for some of this, of course, so the AMC and was a very graphic one. It was so so. Basically they had this pink habitat for humanity, have for humanity house and it was small. The quaint there were five wheelchairs in the high there was, you know, their gypsy have her own room, DD have her own room, but they they often slept in the same bed and. That just so you know their their crime scenes that open this. It's it's kind of hard for me to you, know You think about, but
the dead of night, a co conspirator of Gypsy snuck in handed a large very large knife, and he went into Bd's room and stabbed her back slash her neck. She woke up and said: gypsies name, and you know so she she was murdered in cold blood. They, well the blankets top of her Nick list had ordered gypsy to be in the bathroom naked and we the deed, was done. He said come out here and it was. Her job to you know to scrub the after room for evidence, because our drops of blood. Now, how is it that? Let's let's go backwards because we're
we're going to talk about a relationship and how this ever came to be so we might as well go backwards and talk about you as you do you have an interview with a friend who a neighbor who believes she's a good friend of of Ciro's, and so she understands, or at least at that time believed that she had certain elements. What are some of the elements that people around her people at school people in the community. Believe gypsy has so. Gypsy and Dee Dee are well known in the community. For being this, this love the plate super use for Mother daughter duo? You know they were often wearing plush slippers or sweatpants gypsy always had like a knitted cap on she was. She was sort of balding
but will her mother had like actually shaved her head, and and you know you mentioned Alea, so this was a neighbor somebody that lived in the same community at a dd and Gypsy lived in an You know she just said they were the kind of the best people around and you know, Aleah being a good person would offer to help DD and Gypsy with things, and you know it always seems clear to her that Gypsy in her ever had alone time. Her mom was always always next to her, and you know. I think that you know it just very strange thing, but a Lee, You didn't really think about it, because she was just helping this young handicap girl, who is also mentally challenged around community. It was thought that Gypsy you had muscular dystrophy. She was leukemia survivor. She was mentally incapacitated in case she was slow. She was, getting out of school when she was in the second grade. She had epaulet
see her. She would take a drug called Tegra Talan, her teeth would fall out. She were these giant glasses, 'cause she or her vision was terra she had hearing problems and oh yeah. She had a feeding tube put in her body because she was under way. You know it was remarkable how many illness is or ailments, as you say that DD sort of placed upon Gypsy. Now in this documentary you. Truly do go the extra yard and investigate and have access. To all these players in this incredible story. So where is the Father of Gypsy rose and how is it that he doesn't see any of this? Yeah, I mean that's what a lot of people have sort of wondered.
Like you know this is his child. How did he not know that she could walk and You know we have to go back to the beginning, which was no, they lived in a small rural part of Louisiana ROD left Bd before gym. He was born Media immediately implied that gets you with a sick baby, and you know it just it just sort of escalated from there and you know they. They got divorced. There was, you know, sort of like child support and cuss, the issues and db harassed, rod in the court system and so after Hurricane Katrina, Gypsy and Dee Dee. You know last Louisiana and moved to Missouri, and they were given this this we have this habitat for humanity house and do We realize this was like the perfect. This was the perfect rougelike
He could make over her legs. Now. With this, you talk about this ruse. What did this include in terms? perks for DD. What was the motivation in terms of at least at least superficially? what it look like, what kind of perks did they get? Besides a home yeah of course, and so They they were given. You know it range from as small as tickets to the movie theater two trips flying to Disney were private, private, private flights to hospitals in Kansas City, thousands of doll. There's from celebrities that had met them at concert. You know cash tone, Asians, coming in from the internet, fundraisers I mean it. Just you know this. I mean it wasn't a giant amount of money like they weren't living off the hog. You know what I mean, but you know they got. Disability Ben
It's from the government. They got donations. You know tv did not have to work, they got child support, it's it! you know they were living comfortably now, let's also talk about as you do this munchausen by proxy syndrome. Just briefly, not again not to give too much away but explain to our audience that doesn't know what this is. What this is til Munchausen by proxy is a psychological disorder where a caregiver or apparent stands illness in a child to garner attention or financial benefit, sometimes it's munch housing is just when you're feigning illnesses in yourself, like you know there,
going to couple of, and you know really intense cases where people fame that they have cancer, they shave their head. They take, you know they go to. Doctors for medication. You know it is. Mental illness, but I do believe that participants know what it like the differ. Between right and wrong. I mean actually, I maybe I know that this is a live interview, but it is mine, and I think he knew what she was doing was wrong, but that might not be all that you know the case with everyone right now. Let's get to how police This are alerted in what manner are they alerted to DD's death? Tell us about the discovery. Well, we talked about the crime scene itself, but what alerts police specifically mentioned it in the introduction about Facebook, so tell us about that Facebook post what was said in there and
is a reaction. And what did it all lead to? There is a facebook post that was that was posted on b, being gypsies, joint facebook page the first, the first post said that bitch is dead and the second post is an's fucking, slash that fat, pig. Just her sweet, innocent daughter, her scream was so fucking loud lol. People were like at the on the facebook they're like what, like you know, it They had never heard any of these women ever talk like that. Gypsy was a child, old dd would never never swore nobody ever heard her swear in her legs, so people thought the facebook with hacked. You know it wasn't. It was gypsy admitted. You know she said she told me that she wanted people to find her mom's body quicker. I don't so I that that does not seem.
I don't I don't know if that that sort of reasoning holds up, doesn't sound like it to me. So, with these posts Continue how I mean, obviously that's how all of these- Where help police track everything, cellphone analysis and posts, and so what did they discover? So so. They trace the ip address of the Facebook code back to a town called big bend. Wi and a Leah was actually one of the first to tell authorities that she knew that Gypsy had a boyfriend, so how she knew We just had a boyfriend once they talked on Facebook in a secret account. The Gypsy Haddon see in a very sort of girly fashion was just like you know. I have a boyfriend, his name is Nicola. If we want to get married, we both love Disney. And she said you know- I think he was from Wisconsin, so it
Now they they said they thought, potentially that that Nick had killed the mom and kidnap Gypsy right. So Obviously they realize with some questioning you talk about because you have again incredible access to have the interrogation interviews of this Nick GO to John and it is fascinating. I gotta say it is when we don't want to give too much away, but he does a terrible day and before they close the other day. I said careful, yeah, they're so close to air date. I hope people, no, no I'm going to say I'm just going to get too much which they did. This alert people to say this is some of the most fascinating footage. I've seen and you say, he's confer, and autistic and has ass burgers, so we just and we we can say that anyway, that it's a very
interesting Interview, to say the least. Totally, I felt the same way I you know when we got access to that. That was very Lee dinner edit process. Yes, I I watched it over and over again. You know looking for clues about this man that had murdered his online girlfriend's mother. You know that is a very drastic action. Why would somebody do that? You know what were the signs that led up to this and he he This very heightened prince, charming gentleman thing where he thought it with his job protect gypsy. And the only way that he could protect Gypsy was at the mom was gone and it just you know it He to me in those interviews in the police, interrogation tapes, he seem severely mentally ill. He seems mentally ill in a way that Gypsy does not sort of look or sound or act like you know. They feel like.
Very different people to me. I agree, and the other thing is what we didn't talk about is, and this is This is amazing to me too how childlike this girl was made to be much younger. I don't know if we mention that, She was meant to act, much younger. She was told as you about that she was retarded so, but she does but the most profound thing is how childlike she sounds all baby I mean I before I met her. I thought if I wonder if the voice was a put on it's not that's her real voice, her mother, so she when she, when the murder happened, I believe she was twenty three And she thought she was about sixteen or seventeen, so that's a huge difference in a
age. You know she did. She does not look like she was in her early 20s. I mean she could pass over thirteen. Sure seems like it and and what you also have is this access to, of course, the texts some of the video of these people. We won't say when, but incredible video foot which of these people interacting this couple. Again. I can't even I don't even know how to describe it except bazaar. Very bizarre and but very immature, and that's the understatement of the week for sure now
talk about you know. One thing that you do cover in the movie two is that that's the mother herself is a master of manipulation you do have. You do really present that in this Documentary, don't you yeah, I mean I did, is endlessly fascinating you know, I don't. I don't think any. I don't. I think very few people could understand why someone would do that to their child. You know bring a child to a doctor hundreds of times when you know there is Nothing wrong with her You know I I looked for clues for the whole time I was making this movie about. You know what what are the signs that she would be that she would lead to should be coming this person that could do that was their abuse. Was there? Was there psych opathy
Did you know where, where sort of murderous traits that arose earlier in her life- and so you know talking with her family members and talking Bikini, who would go on and off the record? You know it's just it's hot, because DD isn't here to tell us her side of the story and to tell like basically I mean you know, she could be very potentially mentally ill I'm sure she is, but that's not really an exc. Use, I mean all the big you know that I you know, I listen to a lot of true crime, podcast and just because you're mentally ill does not give you a license to to act violent with other people, and the majority of people that that survive with mental illness do not act about violently so like what need this case so much different, The fact that she was a woman and just doing all these things that she was implicated by her family in the
their mother and there's. You know, there's a couple of their stories that you'll hear in the film it's just. This was not the first time that she had done something criminal right right. You also talk. In this as well of just the picture of. I guess it's not not the biggest issue. But just the nature of the internet. What is real and what isn't real? What's the plan and what isn't what somebody's word and what isn't and when you're talking about young people, teens or people like this to have disabilities will say, is the did I get that from this. Yes, we know. Definitely I mean you see that in my first film there's this questioning about the role that Social, Media players in our thought processes and like how we, how we think in projector in
most desires, with with Gypsy the one of mine sort of points of fascination, was that she was taken out of school. As I said when she was in second grade, and she just would just watch Disney movie reason she would go on. Lunch would go on Facebook, and these were her outlets. For curiosity, What does it mean when you grow up and you're the only things that you have to really learn from our these certain archetypal Disney movies, with these heightened prince, charming, narratives or Facebook, where it's tension. It's about you know about acting her mental and physical disabilities for people to be supportive of it. Just it. Just the internet always plays a huge role in things that I'm interested in. It's interesting too that you actually have this incredible, Example of what would have even if she did run off what would happen if she told incredibly as much.
As she wasn't told the truth about her own illnesses, their own age that she still was like you say, never alone, to be able to tell anybody anything and when she did, and so this is another profound example in this movie. Where you know we we don't have to take anybody's word for it. This that's a very profound moment to reinforce that, I don't want to give anything away, but to reinforce this helplessness that this woman felt that no one, but no one understood at the time previous to this, if there ever was a sub rise. I mean I don't care what anyone says. This is the definition surprise for this community and for people around them, wasn't it yeah. Now you talk, out this year or how this
certain amount of length of time that it took just tell us a little bit about. How you managed to get access to Gypsy rose. Goes for these interviews and including that you did contact the defense attorney, which is unusual for a defense attorney to say anything except never never talked to a journalist. Well I mean I think, that's potentially a little bit of the old guard that you know, media can't be helpful. You know, I think it makes. The infield is really rational, really smart person, and you know he knew that the optics of the situation work favorable towards him. He was dealing with someone who, when battling abuse, her whole life, and you know I. From I I'm working on for Plnu is real,
in terms of the access, I could not talk to her until a a plea deal with reach and I don't really want to go into the specifics of that, because that it'll it'll kind of break pension of a scene we have in the film. But you know it just- was a really slow low, long process of checking. The family not being pushy but still being present there were course of their outlets that it wanted to to get the story, and you have to sort of balance this competitive side with really sort of thinking about like these. This is story about human beings and, like you know what purpose with this film serve and gypsies life, and so it was, phone calls at first it was letters with her. I flew down to go meet her in person. You know we didn't on camera interview where I learned more. That would inform my actual interview. You know in in a perfect world. That's what I would always do. I think it's really really good you to go and spend time with someone without cameras,
the feel comfortable with you and you can get a feel for them and like Now it might take some of the surprise out of it the element of surprise, but I think that you know it's important for interviews to fill conversational for the subject to feel safe and those are things that I really hope to bring to documentary filmmaking. You know in a long tradition of amazing HBO documentary filmmaking that have done it yes you've got the confidence from HBO to do this, and, yes, that the unique element of it. You just explained it in that you've prepared these people instead of surprise these p, and there is a lot of documentaries. I was just watching one not so long ago, and the persons was asking if the the camera was rolling. So you know you know there was no preparation if they're asking that question you're using that footage, so an incredible idea to really make people comfortable because ah you probably known- and you do not want people
so nervous in front of that camera. Regardless of what reaction they might have red now with this, you also debuted this at the S by Sw Festival, Film Festival in March, tell us a little bit more about the HBO debut. This is eight was finding this very important uh. They have a lot of confidence in you. Just tell us about the debut on May 15th fur, so it is going to be At ten thousand pm, we have done a great amount of press. You know it's in people magazine today that, you came out we're going to be on good morning. America, like it's, Of course. You know I'm on this podcast, it's like very important to to speak to this certain sex of people that are going to be in
is it in this and you know, I I think that a lot of networks would have maybe a difficult time telling the story make. It feel nonex with heat if each go always gave us the. The room and ability to sort of Suss Suss, says it out and see how best to you. You to do it and you know a lot of the. If, when people call it sort of non exploitive, it feels balanced. It feels human, That's due in large part to our editor Andrew Kaufman, who cut the film who's, the writer of the film and you know he he they thought about it and he didn't it. Didn't. Take him a super long time to cut it user really senator, but you know I think there was a lot of
thoughtfulness put in about how to construct the story, and you know when do you reveal that she doesn't use the wheelchair? You know there's many different ways to make this movie right, certainly now with this with this film making, who else was involved, you talked about your editor Kaufman, but who else was involved with this that you found in the integral part of your team, Sure so the cinematographer, his name is Brian Stark it in he would do two or three cameras and found we roll with a very small crew, because it's it's cost productive, but also it just keeps sentiment, you know he's amazing and he works largely with my producer on the project. His image Andrew Rossi he's my producing partner for the HBO, songs that we work on were we're working at third one right now and Andrew Rossi is a
realistic, amazing documentary filmmaker and director, and he made page wanted a year in the New York Times every tower first Monday in may eat this New York list, Cirque he is just He does a lot of different sort of things, so he's not a true crime guy, so this is sort of little bit unusual that he produces these films, but I think it shows the length- and you know the variety that he can employ as a as a producer and s corrector and as a mentor of sorts. Just tell us about some of the exclusive interviews that may we may have not spoke. About that are going to be that are featured in mommy dead and dearest The interrogation interviews and exclude oh yeah, you're gonna, see never seen before interrogation. Footage I worked with and excuse me worked with MIKE Stanfield to gain access to these materials, is all because of him, the defense attorney.
And it was also You'Re- going to see archival, Vhs tapes of home movies between DD and Gypsy- that have never been seen before, there's interviews with DD parents dbs, nephew who's, amazing, there's Christiaan Broadlane. Sure there's Alya, there's doctors that treated gypsy there is as a journalist who wrote incredible article and Buzzfeed that guy Four million hits due in large part to the strength of the writing, but also the craziness of the story, and you are going to speak directly to do Gypsy and hear her talk incredible. You talk about in this documentary to that incredibly that, because of DD's constant bringing to various doctors and complaining about certain Eiland
even get to the point that she's operated on unnecessarily. At least you seem to hint at that. I I yes, I I Do you believe that I I am. Sorry, I'm feeling a little faint. I. Basically that she was she was give issues brought to the hospital in Gypsy was brought to the hospital over one hundred times. While she was in Missouri and and you know there are a series of operations that were done, that you know, I believe, we're not necessary you know it just it was. It was constant. This was this was an illness it does. It does not make rational sense. Now you talk about there's many Sides of this as well in terms of you know we just
talked about. There was only one doctor that notice that anything was amiss and you have that person interviewed with you. Also, talk about that. This seems to be where things coincide. Tell us what you think are the elements that coincide here that the viewer is going to see with this documentary. Just much more than this incredible story. Well, I think it's uh If you were to tell that, I don't want to put my perspective on it. You know I think that what I do is a filmmaker is create a package and a film where people can sort of they connect. Spirited in and react how they see fit I don't. I don't have a preconceived notion how people, how people- we will react to things well. What I meant was this: this is you speak. To abuse and you speak to mental illness. But these are just a couple of issues that are involved in this film, but.
Yeah I mean it, it runs again that you know it's just it's mental illness. It's abuse is, social media is Disney. It's the burgeoning sexuality. It's matricide is, you know. Why this happened. You know it's all of these in a very tight each minute felt now for those that are listening to this as well. We talked about Nicholas so go to John. This film doesn't have as much to do with him and his case as Gypsy rose Blanchard's case. Yeah, I think that is you don't Nicholas, was the co conspirator that Gypsy. You know with my online boyfriend that she and that our christian dating Site- and you know they talked for a year and a half before they met, and you know I
Reached out to Nick, I sent him a letter much in the same way that I spoke with Jesse and I was rich turn back to me on open and you I emailed his where several times I did not receive a response back. And you know, like you said, potentially he's, might be part of the older garden. Just you know this is not for me. We don't want to get involved, but I never received any sort of comment I reach the family. The only once I believe, Nicholas his family and did not receive comments now. Is there other than that? Is there any other reason why you would not in the future, or is there any plan to because this story is a documentary, not a series, not part of a series.
Is there any interest whatsoever of again? I don't want to give anything away, but is there any talk of following what happens with Godejohn? At trial, no, not for me, I mean, maybe there is another filmmaker out there. You know, I think, there's incredible case Is that are happening in real time, and you know I Nicholas is case, although interesting, because he you know was- was not a victim of sorts, but he did get the difficult ending for him you know I I just I think Gypsy was for the personally was the far more interesting case and so and that's the access that I got and that's the access that I worked on. So that's what I chose to follow. What was the most surprising thing.
The surprising element of your interviews with Gypsy rose, something that you had not Antica, what's the weather I mean every time we talk something sort of interesting happens. You know she is a choose, a keeper of secrets and a lot of her life has been kept a secret and so one of the more interesting things for me that I wasn't able to actually include in the film with that Gypsy and be shared at the same bed. Every night gypsy had her own room in the house own bed, but DD liked like for her to sleep close and so they spent. You know most their time together and they slept in the same bed. I found that completely in Totale, shocking yeah yeah. You talk about something else which interesting in new supported it too, which is that you said it. We talked about it. She was always around him out of his friend or someone else, but you showing the footage,
something a little more, even disturbing and in interesting once you know that fact that see is to be in all the video footage say that one more time we talked about her being constantly around Gypsy rose her mother? But you also hide write, something where it's little even more disturbing in that you highlight even the closer contact, will say right yeah I mean the the the footage showed that the we're always together and that you know DD was had her eye on her and even They are alone, even when they are alone, you know Gypsy was saying that her, you know like said her legs, weren't working like she would be showing like moving her legs around in a way of that sheet. That showed that she was in mobile.
Yeah and the other thing what I was trying to get at was that she always seemed to have contact with the hand. Holding a hand but holding a hell, yeah manner as well yeah I mean it's just I'm just I'm getting into the a weird subjects, because it's like I don't really want to give all of it away. You know it's like, maybe We should have planned it for after the the the screen, like that when it goes on HBO, but yeah there was, there was a very sort of mini little behavior that when they were in front of cameras, you know gypsy and TV would be holding hands, and it was inferred that if something was said that DD didn't like she would grab her hand right now. You see this. How long? How the hours or how long did you interview Gypsy rose over what period of time? How long was that period
it was a half hours and it was one day typically. I would like to do that a lot more but she's in prison, and you know that was the time that I was given right and it's so and then, as you people will see in this movie? She is is more than a fascinating subject in that two and a half hours. Yeah, definitely I mean we use a lot of it. You know it for me. For me, it felt captivating. Now, what was your trip like to Springfield MO. Just tell us a little bit about your impression there not of what exactly pardon That you did there 'cause. Those have some more of interviews where their relatives but. What was sort of the mood by the time you got their film makers.
Poking around in their little town, so yeah Springfield MO, is, a you know is an unusual Is the usual place in that it's in the Ozark Mountain Range, but it's still like kind of a big city there's around two hundred thousand people if I'm not mistaken, and this group do some graphic murder. It happen there that most people knew about, but outside of Springfield people people. Didn't know, didn't know about it, so it was just like a lot of members of the community felt some antagonism towards reporters for coming in and painting their town like this. You know my story was that people were really friendly except you know not a lot of the neighbors wanted to go on the record. Sure or any no. None of the neighbors want to go on the record. Besides Alea right.
And the story nationally from there The information that was had by Springfield MO at that time, by the police and the media again there was just a fraction of the information that you have on this documentary. That was, and that's part of this most fascinating part of the story. Is that what you thought you would find and then what you actually discovered by speaking to the principles. Not there is no other way to get this story. This is one of those very unique. Stories where there is only one. There is really only one side here and not too many people to speak to, like you say, DD's gone red you have access to everyone. So was the national story and how lacking, was it in sort of details and and what was the optics of it at that time? You know I
I think that people didn't know people didn't know about this story. It just didn't break into the national consciousness until the Buzzfeed peace came, and you know I don't really have a good idea as to why maybe it's, because it happened in the s. Maybe it's because it happened in people that weren't famous you know I. I That's such a cool question like I don't I don't know how people felt felt about it. I just knew it was. There was a god piece about it. There was a couple of sort of local papers that were covering it, but that's also. It made it so exciting for me Was that there wasn't these, like giant huge outlets, later Nightline in twenty twenty, I believe we're interested in the story and induct bill and doctor OZ, but like they have these incredibly talented sort of ferocious
producers that know about crime stories all over but yeah it was. It was sort of interesting like how people in the town felt about it, but then, when I would go back home you know maybe talk to a couple of New Yorkers and tell them what I was working on. The big o. I've never heard of that yeah. I think it's a it's a fast. Ending story without some of the elements that seemed to be pop, dealer in the last few years that seemed to, for that reason, captivate an audience of the case. Anthony and the, yeah the cases which are um attractive to people for much different reasons in this. This is a in comparison, a very, very sensitive story and so I congratulate you for bringing a story that might not be so popular, like you say, with the national press, because it doesn't fit all those salacious highlights, I guess we'll say: yeah
Thank you so much for saying that. That's really that's really thoughtful. No, how long was this entire process for this film and now that you have the HBO? they view on May 15th. What's next after that, for this film just more pro motion for this film told us about that yeah, so the phone comes out on Monday. You know not too much more promotion. We've done, we've done quite a interpress. Now it's in the hands of audiences people are going to interact with it. And you know, I just I think we're just going to wait to hear how it how it goes, all in I started working on it August, two thousand and fifteen. So it's about a year and a half Have a little bit over that, and you know it was. It was a difficult process. We weren't sure if we were going to get the access, but you know that's what makes doc still making so.
Find it kind of on the edge of your seat right and what was south by southwest like are you debuted to Cannibal COP thought, crimes in Tribeca in two thousand fifteen? What was south by southwest like south by SW was totally fantastic. I recommend anybody going. They had an incredible lineup of amazing films there this year, JANET Pierson, who runs the fest Google is a total pacemaker and she knows how to pick films that are going to really generate sort of disk. Russian- and you know when got there? When I skews me when I was making this film, I immediately thought of it as a Southbay film, because it's it's, the documentary, it's it's a crime story, but there is there is you know there are elements that just make it a little bit: sort of funny, and so it just felt like a really unique, really special mix for s by and then
we got it and it was just you know it kids and it was amazing and with Cannibal cop trip back, there was also a good fit. This is the New York story. You know we got a lot of coverage in papers and you just sort of made sense. So, with these two films I would say, they've been pretty kind of tailor made for the festival is that they that they showed that and we've had fantastic experiences working with the festival's yes, and I think too that I think this this can attach to this- that there is a growing sub, This and So you see the resurgence in true crime on cable, HBO Netflix original series making of a murderer vice of all kinds of things. And this is in line with the tastes that that people have for true crime. They need something much better than
I don't want to slag investigation discovery, but there is a new level, a new standard and I think and mommy dead and dearest is right up there. Very, people, are going to be very, very, very surprised and excited and interested in this mommy dead and Dearest. I want to thank you for all the work you've done on this and for coming on and talking about mommy, dead and dearest. So maybe just before we go. If you could just briefly describe what people will see, May 15th on mommy dead and dearest yeah, of course. So- Mommy dead and dearest is true true story about a case that is stranger than fiction. It deal You know, as you talked with beginning a young woman who is confined to a wheelchair and instead of making it that sort of like.
You know this linear story. It is about going back in history going to Louisiana and talking to talking to them. Trader of the abuse, scam of her family getting and trying to figure out who this woman was and then who Gypsy is there's archival vhs tapes there's into arrogation footage, there's text messages between gypsy and boyfriend. Nick there are, you know there are interviews with her parents where you know her step mom and her dad. Where we see pictures of her at the hospital I mean it's just, it is this is totally table, but new material driven film that I hope you know you're at the edge of your. You're, not sure what goes what happens next. You know that you know because of our editor. He did a fantastic job. You just don't know, what's going to happen next in the story- and you know that was my experience when I was making it.
Yes and thank you very much again, a very powerful film and we hadn't mentioned, and we didn't, I didn't go for it. So there's a surprise ending so just wanted to tell people tune into mommy dead and dearest. Thank you very much. Erin Lee Carr for yeah and I I hope that I wasn't too coy about my answers. I think that I You know, I'm just trying to keep a couple of things are under my hat, but I hope that that was ok, okay for you, Dan, and Alright, cool that are listening. Well, absolutely, I'm! The most curious person out of a whole camp Intel Anti ship, so we'll be tuning in because If we have any one detail that we didn't get, we got a tune, and so I don't think we gave anything away. We just really really high people about. Viewing mommy dead and dearest on May fifteen.
On HBO. So thank you very much. Erin Lee car. You have a great evening. Thank you very much once again spectacular. Thank you Dan. Thank you, goodnight.
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Transcript generated on 2019-10-31.