Filmmaker Jeff Baena was always into movies that didn't fit into easy categories. He tells Marc about having his mind blown at an early age thanks to directors like Kubrick and Fellini, which helps explain how Jeff could wind up writing a screenplay like I Heart Huckabees and directing a twisted Middle Ages comedy like The Little Hours. Also, Marc gets his friend and television foil Dave Anthony to stop so they can talk about Dave's new book and make fun of each other.
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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Though the alright. Let's do this, how are you what the fuckers, what the fuck buddies, what the buccaneers, what the fuck public gains, what the fuck kratz, what the fuck? Next, what happening a mark mare- and this is my pod- can double tat. Thank you. for joining me. I hope you a pleasant. Fourth, I hope you have all your digits. I hope you didn't write your car or blackout or make family members cry or burn your hands and face, I hope, we think worked out for most here and you reflected and we're thoughtful or you're, just aggravated and excited whatever. It was welcome I hope you had a a pleasant fourth of July. I While you know I first, when we deal with some sadness, there's some sadness of couple of days ago, since I last talked to you.
hi. I got confirmation that one of my ferals one of my my older outdoor buddies, the One of the one sided relationships I have with the with wild animals with wild cats, who I feed is his dead, and I ve talked about, this guy for a long time. This is death black cat r. I de bc. he was an amazing cat. It because, if only if not only of what it, how do I want to say it He was amazing cat and a lot of ways, but the primary one being here completely wild- and he couldn't hear shit- could not hear anything. It was a miracle that he lived. He was a. He was
actual spirit, animal. I thought he had a mystical quality. I was always amazed to see him when he let me go away for four weeks. a time and go eat somewhere else, and he didn't he a few days. I just had a bad feeling. You know I just, but I have a bad feeling about that stop in, and then my neighbor Adam confirm that there that his daughter, his little girl isabel, had found the the cat under a tree over there next door down on the hill dead, and he didn't sick and I don't know I don't want to get too grisly about it, but somehow or another I've I've been blocked with not having defined, the animals in my life dead. You know boomer disappeared, a book. He died when I was away eddie cat one was dead out in the street and then disappeared deaths. cat is now dead and in a grave down on the hill next to another feline in a smaller.
Adams, a small feline, a bear I'll site the truth of the matter is that cats been around for at least, seven years that I can remember and india you I did the best. I could and gave him a good life. You have done to the house a all that you have for so long, but it He was sort of a symbol of strength. For me, deaf black cat. And I and now he's gone. I remember I took him to the vet once I had to trap him and take them to the vet, because half his face was bleeding. and swollen and for a positive list, and I and I thought this cat not afford to lose any more of his senses wasn't it was an app says and I got him back, but the vet said I've. Never I've never seen a wilder cat. He was a tough little fuck and he's a managed to dodge death for many years and now he's gone so rest in peace, deaf black, Adam sorry to see you go
today on the show? I got a short talk with my old writing enacting. Comrade Dave Anthony about his his book. Apparently didn't really want to sell. I don't know he he wrote a book based drawn from his dollop podcast His co host Gareth reynolds, called the united states of absurdity, untold stories from american history get that wherever you get books, but apparently Dave didn't think to give me a call. Maybe this platform was not for dave I'll talk to him about it, but he's here for a minute. Then after I talked to Jeff Baena, the filmmaker, maybe you're familiar with, this movie? I guess the biggest one that got a bit of attention a little while ago with Josh iii, which I enjoyed. Got a new movie out with the my co star, in glow alison brie and her husband franco and I replied- came a coup chee in june
see riley and molly, shannon and there's a lot of people in a nickel famines and for a second paul riser does a great job in it fred arms sins in there for a second alot lot of people in the movie and it's an odd dirty little period, piece based in medieval times at a nunnery. But dad if Dana is very gauged intense smart dude and it was good. I can do So this year I went over to the regular party. I go to a dead dan and jens house, dan from gimme gimme records and his wife. Jenny acupuncturist this ouch com. Is it yeah? I that's. The proper term is nice, nice gathering of people, but he hear a lot of good conversations around lot of good food. A lot of roasted pork. my stands- are working overtime today, because
I did that make the exception. I did see us weird when he eats shit like that, after a certain age- and I don't know if it's trackable or just start to wonder- which burger did you hit, which burger just filled to go tube going into your pump, which one was a which was the last straw which piece of pork which rib which burger which egg which one was it and was it worth it? could have avoided that one burger that finally speckled your pipe Would you have done it? At a you know, I've been good in the the pork was good and the desserts were good pie. A lot of pie. Fuckin happened. I think I know I did dan's wife jen because, like she makes it slow cook, says poor kyle days. Of course, I'm just going to be lingering around the kitchen helping out until the pork comes out. and then a gag back, and I'm lingering just hanging around waiting? the pies to come out offering some help. Can I put that on the table and why
you so I sit and take. The first piece is there scream. Is there any shame in that? Why have decorum? I don't want, be cut out of the pork or the pie? By I was, I went home and I felt like me I'm maybe I should try to behave like a fucking. had all but I've never been corn had alter anything else. I'm either sore withdrawn or kind of the agro. We're just running around like a fucking child That's a pretty good ranges spend some time talking to a guy kind of know, Joe Wong? soundtrack people he does movie and tv soundtracks, but Joe Wong has a I'd cast that too. Talk to drummers he's needed it's called. The trap set If that interests you musicians and drums, Aficionados go check out Joe podcast kind of claims you based it on this, but it's just a drummer specific. All right, so Dave Anthony
anthony is a friend. We should be spending more time together you have close by. We should be hanging out, but for whatever reason we doubt and when I told him I said I can't you, I saw his book in chicago at a book store and those like why the fuck wouldn't come over and and try to talk about his book and maybe get people to buy it. I don't know but it's a bottle I'll get to it with him. So this is me and din Dave anthony having a yell at a tense reunion. A friendly. It's reunion, which is a every time we get together, we were where you a courtier, podcast, the the dollop, the dollars to know the name I don't think we ve been how we known it. Ok d. I know the dollop. Of course I do. I just had a brain. Far from it back, I hear you say that
You have done research now it isn't or take your conversation. I didn't even backstory extorted, so I don't see you for a long time, for whatever reason do you now you were both busying or both were both isolating. This is not impossible. So when we work together while we like each other, we hope it I'm going out for a little while. in fact in chicago doing issue and one of the locations of the bookstore and I'm looking at their table and new books, and I'm like the fucking dollop book.
What does dave not want to sell the book I mean like I'm down the street. I have people who I like on my show to help sell the thing they made, but I guess he doesn't want to sell a book at all. Do ac have a podcast, the decent sorry that I need to show your reminder that we're still on the air over here I remember I remember I had a list of people what was on that list and they you are on the lane parentheses. Did you never get a book now? I can get anything, as this all seems very weird cause. I think I think what happened was as I had a list had illicit people, and then I think I know what I did. I got to you and I ve seen all the shit you get. The sounds like I have to hand deliver this to him because if I sent it to him in an envelope is going to fucking sit there on the ground. That's what I thought yeah, but the guy didn't get it
extra me or anything, yeah did I well. That's that's a complicated and involved process to reach out to another human, barely to say, like I got a book coming out yeah I want to send you on me. I can come on and talk about it yeah Oh, yes, you are right. There is a lot of levels to that way. about I'm leaving my house. What about the level of sort of like I can give him that now yeah, I'm not going to let it have any. What about that? Little fuck mare and I'm not going to put myself in that position where you got to kiss up That guy there's a lot of. I think, there's a lot of jealousy if my book, because I don't think your book has the same sort of jealousy pictures no pop up and we have we have. We have a lot of draw drawings in here.
No, you didn't buy in chicago, you just looked at it and then then you were a little angry. What did that was weird? My anger was so stupid because of my will fuck him. If he doesn't want to. Let me help him out, I'm not going to buy a book and convoluted. I was just like I remember thinking I have to. I have to actually hand this hand deliver this to mark, but then I never yeah. I know he just sits there and then you sit at home and go I dunno. Why isn't his bookselling yeah? It's still going on and everything works out exactly as you expected data they that it's there I told you we shouldn't have done the book. I told you, I told you we shouldn't have tried to sell it. I told him the convoluted plans on both sides. Have you ever heard the podcast thing? Have you listen to it? I watch you do alive once. Oh that's
and the thing I like it. I, like I wouldn t I personally, like ass, made more broader question to you: is nannie podcast out using a powder keg joan dave. I don't know why. I don't listen a one pod cast. You know why Here's a here's! How I here's, how I take an audio material put on my sonos, occasionally for last three months, I'm so engaged in the news in print that I don't with an empty our news, the time I listen to records or listen to music in my car, I primarily listen to music and that's it that's the story even when traveling you listen to music. I do a lot of times when traveling, I don't listen. Anything there, like I'm so inundated with music on an intentional basis. Sometimes when I travel, in a plane watch some movies or I'll just sit there and listen to the plane engines and the smiled man and that yeah. That's that's very fair
That's not good for you. I know you should always have some sort of noise happening. Nicky s tracked you from your own thoughts and sometimes if I'm interviewing musical guest out I'll be busy listening to their entire catalogue for no longer be able to take turns and pretend that you do in research. Why do I get a handle on something I'd like to know where went bad and why not know the most recent twenty records? Well, you never know the noticing. A twenty eight may not lie is because your point you I get, you do right and then they think they do they're doing something miraculous an amazing. Sometimes they are sometimes they do put up good stuff when their older, but just no one's listening. So that progress is you take bizarre o american? Something bizarre was a sort of you know. I guess the best way to describe it is like history, united states by howard, Zinn yeah. I sort of took that
models hysteria, people's histories yellow. So I tried to look at history from the people who are being persecuted or really slowly and buy it can be, but sometimes you do smaller stories to ever. He small this monster is for sure my thing, book is mostly full of so these are all stories that were featured on the podcast yeah. Forty for one through in there, but through yet stories, sports stories, a medical breakthroughs, the movies, a of medical. What's the lovato me, one freeman's were bottoming. That was a guy who basically started a I mean craze because they had a lot of people in hospitals that it was just packed full of people that didn't know what to do with Allen. Frances farmer got hers. I think she came later, but it may at the tail end The new, the new great psychological breakthrough, totally work, and
I went around like I mean he was like a rockstar and goes a little like ice pick and then do a bunch of a bunch at once and you'll be lined up and stick that ice pick up into a frontal lobe and just knock that person into dominance just like just bought like blender it just like burn and then like a year fixed and then, and then the doctors like this is great. Now he sits in a chair and smiles perfect. Thank you for doing that. Yeah. I wish he would have left the ability to use a fork in there. That would have been helpful to everybody yeah, so he he went around doing that and I think he at one point he had a gold gold plated pick and a and a hammer and like yeah he was like Henry set up a factory, no knowledge. It is just that I'm through and he's doing a bunch, and what was the commentary angle on that? I mean like me why why that story? Well, for us, there's a there's, a big emphasis on how what matters started out as and when it became, and the fact is that it
a crazy, barbaric thing they did, but at the end of the day it help lead us to chemical fixes. For these they they were able to ipod eke out the area right. The low get an unkind to see exactly what had happened. He s, we believe your personality and how do we not do it with a hammer yet so all that stuff and what's the death of george Washington? Will they bled george washington to death that's how George Washington died. He had they believed in in bloodletting than in three different dialects, came in a treat him in one night and they all they all bled him and at the at the They they'd taken half of his blood and that's how he died really yeah, and what was he put something though he gotten like a really bad cold, may pass him on yeah. He was just out there hilariously. He he was he he was seventy zone was he was in his seventies, but he went out on his on his farm for whatever reason yeah in a storm and got soaked and he was in his dinner clothing and he refused
it's to be late to dinner, so he just sat there in his cold, wet clothing, aha eating with his wife and after that he went upstairs to change, so he got really sick because of that. So maybe at that point the president was the not hat, didn't have his full capacity or a slightly stubborn to the point of death. Then. What was your angle on that? What was the commentary like, even even the father of our country, was dummy yeah? No, that was another medical one of just have just you don't hear about that, but the they bled our president to death, our first president, because they what they were doing, the right thing when they were clearly it's the kentucky meat shower that just crazy. Now I wouldn't have known that a lady was just out in her yard. Via doing a little laundry and a bunch of meat fell out of the sky and then everyone's trying to figure out where it came from. What about? What's the doc anderson story educated
still alive. He is a boxer. Was a boxer in florida. And he was part of this- manager who, who kept wanting to take, falls yeah and he was trying to build up another box or so it Tom take a fallen at some point, the guy wouldn't so he dragged him and then but every dragged him with it lasted for years. My and he confronted the manager and like he listened, Yeah, because he didn't know was wrong with him and after a while, he confronted the manager and the managers that are going to kill your sister or whatever, and then he ended up shooting the manager killing them major scenarios in jail right, but it's one of those he didn't know he was going to die. You poison me like,
oh my god, so he got life in jail. But thinking that much you and gareth reynolds do you. Who does the primary research? I do? Gareth Gareth is the funny the funny a part of the thing. He said, it's important that you have one of those guys, I'm a straight man that he can be funny. I seem to be really funny: but I understand you need in their different type of funny. Well I mean it's not like, like on year show I would sort of carriers, economic yeah. I would carry the scenes with my hilarity, alright with you and now it's sort of the opposite on the pipe. I think I think what really happened was we
if added to a certain dynamic that created the humor yeah, if there was a there was a relationship that was sort of accentuated are issues in there and then from those I I got two steals. I know I knew that that was a wind up yeah. He was going to start out pretty good like right when I heard he started, I'm like is that is going to end the way it always does. It doesn't I dont maybe room would you like me room. What it? What is the process of like you, do two of these a week on the podcast yeah. So I do a lot of research. It's a lot of work and I I write them up and then he just sees never heard of the subject. So I just sit down and read it and in the only context is you just think it's weird or it's an inordinate using or it has something in it that relates to today. We also let us avoid do that. I try to parallel. We know whatever's happening here. Why me
because Mikey usually thought that cuz, was into irregularly that its work, if the tabloid element, but it doesn't really. Some of it is more of a social commentary element than a tabloid element. Right like look at how fucking weird people are yeah and look how fucked up things were, and oh shit at different skill, fucked over gravy know if you've noticed what's going on it's not it's not really that great for telling me yeah he had to. you don't need drives me, nuts, as there are people out there in the world who are just going about their lives. Men are just sorta like yeah, I dunno really what's going on today and the lady next to me was watching an extra and as like how you do that now I know I feel that too, but like there's, also a part of me that sort of like what I have to remember to do that occasionally check out and just kind of I of, if checking out it's like b by being checked in. Ultimately, unless you're, actually taking action.
the all you're doing is just heating. Your shit out, yep and just going like we're, fucked yeah, we're screwed yeah, and then you just sit around and are living it. So unless you like, taking I'm taking it in and going long and a sense of money or write some emails or go out into the streets, all you're doing is like nah, it's not getting any better yeah. Why did you watch an extra point? Was it over it's over? What's the, why would you wanna watch that here's why I will never watch that anyways? But I do try to have conversations with people in and stay on top of things, it's very hard for me, Knowing I have a platform You're not just become one of those kind of strident existential, play panic, aggravated people. Just sitting reeling off the news and reacting to it, because there there is humanity still going on. So I like out choose.
Stories that sort of like well. This is where the human spirit kind of one- or you know or like I kind of related that like cause it the just ramming up against this fucking doofus is it just feeding it now? It feeds the hiv. He likes any kind of attention, yeah away any answer. Swirling madness he's like this is great, so what he's gone on how the kid, the kids good it's a little baseball, a freak rivalry yeah. We talked a little bit about that. I dislike I, I just feel like you, you on the field you're coaching to coaching getting into argued arguments in passing fights with other coaches, I told that a guy to fuck off in the little league baseball field after a dream- that I can tell you this- the one you're not going to deny or confirm it or I'm not going to deny that's what happened. He he got I went over to them to taking. Can you talk?
Is your team about misbehaving they're being kind of below? Are they doing they were? They were badgering our kids yelling a new pitch slow just that kind of the kind of stuff you don't want to happen with little kids yeah and I went over to say: hey. Could you talk to your kids too him stop and he got in my face and screamed at me, and I thought we were going to get in a fistfight, so you knew exactly where that was coming from like not only were they not going to stop, but probably incur. I immediately realized. Oh, this is actually coming from the top of the top down thing, and so he was screaming me. So I did what I always do when I looked at him. I said fuck you. And then he got more mad cuz I swore on children both really and then he said. What did you just say to me- and I said I said: go fuck yourself I'll get the men, he didn't know what to do, because he thought I wasn't going to
I thought it'd be like. Oh I'm sorry, but I didn't I dug down and then and then he got very angry. He wouldn't shake my hand at the end of the game and all that stuff, and then I went home and I looked him up yeah and he used to be JEB Bush's press secretary hall, see it all comes around. Everything is political, there's yeah, it really is and he used to also when he was in college. He was the college mascot Bobbie the bear, oh yeah, so he's got a lot on his plate. He's got a lot of baggage and I know if I see him around town I can go. The mayor and he'll lose his mind that your ace in the hole you're ready all right. So this book, the united states of absurdity untold stories from american history, Dave, Anthony and Gareth Reynolds this is where the forward by pan knows what they also mention. That is, I was you re idea. Wasn't it
patton oswalt, it. Books are hard. It's been yeah the they're, the company's happy when you get these quarterly sort of invoices yeah that just show you how much money you didn't make just like it, just like, in parentheses, against your advance in debt. You are still, I just assume, I'm going to get some that says almost yeah. He had them for years and unless a miracle happens, but this one they they. They ordered a second printing because they didn't think it was going to sell that well and then it did oh good. So it's who knows what I dunno, what the numbers, Earl and the broadcasters popular yeah.
it is doing well we're not. Are you still limited doctoral years? It's bread. None were actually more popular in america that Austria and why we came around and exciting. What's going to see a nice to see you, which is which led to the more than once we usually live down the street we do live. I dont know that, I'm not you know, I don't know what it is or who you hang out with, but I know you long enough and I've heard you talk about enough people to wear like I'm one of the better ones they get too. I enjoy area yet, and we owe you an amount of time together. You understand me, maybe the issue of Sarajevo tended rather just certainly here. Can you just? Let me be a dick. Can you just did that sort of what I do publicly and with those and other people yeah yeah I work out into my I belong
still able to and they receive in there that I know she goes to the yoke classes. I'm tired and I tend to work out with a world this woman who trains me down the street over here, but I do want to go up. There was there. I just mostly ride the bikes. Maybe a little bit run outside right on the circle thing of up above the the no no like I tend to run out here, like I was outside outside during the world. How is that? It's great seems terrifying to me, quiet quite a few? up in the hills. There's no cars, but there's enough room to run around up here and yeah yeah, there's like hills right now, I'll run out. ST and run down, then I'll walk up this big, steep hill and run a little bit and come back around and I grunting on the machine like it's just sort of like running on a machine is, is tedious but if I could get into the habit this so the other stuff like that working out business, I do with her, but I actually go and do some classes likes him yoga man,
for while I'm thematic jumping into a pilates gear, yeah yeah, that's with machines yeah, oh yeah, I might that's it subtle, like you, don't realize. Until the day after, when you only ship, lady avenue she answered nightmare, the yeah I gotta go easy on this was control. Might I guess you posted tyler trying to work out? I want is when I stand up and just evacuate my boss, to get to the bathroom first or you don't want to go back to that class you to be the guy who shit his pants wife. I stand up and shit my pants, I go it's working, I'm getting in shape dr work of housewives like that guy yeah, alright, buddy, maybe I'll see of the gym, get thanks for me on out,
there you go so go, get there go get his work. It's fine! There's pictures and you know it's a nice. Maybe you know a like you take this into the bathroom book. You know what I'm saying so Jeff painter is a guy I met. You know I went to. Where did I meet him? First, yeah. We were set up on sort of coffee date by the agency and we had a great I can then I had them on and went to. A screening of his movie is very funny, while the little the little ours was still in, post production when they are still tweaking it jeff come watch it where they were doing the editing and a screening room. So, as a screening, you never know what a screen is going to be, how we're going to be there who's going to be there remember I showed up and we were waiting. I was Jeff and then you another guy walks in and it's father, John misty, so Just me and father John misty, at a screening with Jeff and
was an awkward just. A very small and kind of christine crowd me father John misty and the director the movie is funny. It's raw, it's good! It's it's! It's a weak thing, that's for sure, and it's based on some a very old piece of literature which I found compelling, and I talked to Jeff about it. But this is me, and the Bane of the movie is the little hours playing working away, it's going to be expanding throughout the country this month, so this is me talking to him to Jeff actor and writer of the thing- and it was very funny to me that, like I'm, going to see the screening of this new movie allison breeze in it, who you know I just worked with and john riley and aubrey plaza in it. Who is your girlfriend? molly, shannon
gene and misused by? But I gotta know what to expect. I know that you told me was based on the de cameron, which is a big book, and this is one story in that book. I read the decameron, I think when I Satire class in college right rotating cameron, giovanni boccaccio, so So you invite me this screening and I didn't know who is going to be there and it turns out just me and father john misty sitting there. What's his real name again tell Josh Tillman, who I've met me and tillman me, why did you did it the wtf, with our idea added? just an odd thing like it was just to me. It was very odd, which is why you're going to be me and father John misty, watching a movie with you perfect audience. Yeah. Are you guys real, tight we're. We're friends I went to reciprocate unit is buttered friends with opera. I look at you she's known him for years she's in a music video with him yet, but the movie is
It's kind of raw takes place in what what's what's the date, thirteen forty sotherton forty seven at a it's. Is it a it's, not a convent, it's a giant. It is a continent as a comment and mrs, is at that some of the stuff that I didn't know about. That time was that that some women were sentenced to convents in a way I most women I mean the way can work was a comment. Was a school so ever especially if you're a novel you'd go to a convent and then at some point you come out, you graduate right either get married or you just lead a life. But there's a bunch of considerations that I guess we don't. Now about people the way people treated here? And so, if you are the youngest kid generally, a man or woman you'd, be a priest or non right. If you were not married to become a nun, if you were divorced, you became a nun, if, husband died. He became a non theirs and then, only if your father wanted have favour with the church, the more daughters or sons he had in the church will be better. So I just all these inversions of how you and the becoming an eye, it's the middle ages, middle
then a little later I think around fourteen ten or fourteen twenty, when started almost doing it as a feminist movement where they would like choose to become nuns. yeah. It was very funny because Alison brie's character is there because her father wants to have you know a relationship with the church and the father could be could not be any more jewish then Paul rise or even in the scenes which I thought was funny, and when I talk to you afterwards about this, because it's really about sex in this convent. It mostly right now, would you say, and in that state, we ve come to cameron. And the least access back to absolutely so What I told you afterwards was. It felt somewhat like Alex Cox's movies nerves, specifically walker, for some reason because there was something about an yeah?
and then also that their there seem to be not as much of an intention when fusion of modern, ability into the dynamics between people, but it was definitely there that you feel like the setting was what it was. The premise in the store was what it was, but there was the activity and sir, or type of engagement between these characters scene, sort of modern in raw? What is its timeless? I think that's that's human, human. I guess I guess that's probably true, and I don't you I guess we don't usually think about that time. When I was pretty much my my intention was to sort of bridge that gap so that your when you're watching outside you don't have this sort of hazy sort of we're between you and that time, where you're not connecting with these people but they're, just people here that you know obviously their own technology and their. You know nuns, but they're, just people, same desires and same hopes and dreams and their filthy. psychic they've always been the animals which struggle conflict and the now what
How did this work out? Because I mean you don't spend a lot of money on movies. So how do you get tissue in ITALY? At this beautiful place, it worked out really well, so we are so just sort of like going back. History, I guess yeah sort preface all this. I went to n you. I got a degree in filmmaking. I also got a minor, medieval and renaissance studies, which wasn't a purpose idea. I took a bunch of random ass classes, like I took a class on harmony of the spheres year. Arabian nights, jewish mysticism and one of the closets was called sexual and russian in the middle ages and renaissance visa, and we stated a cameron heptameron and the potentials and just sort of the whole history here and what it did was it opened my eyes to this time period. You always think of nuns and priests and all these people sort of just been as religious robots that are just going through their day and year and almost so, unreliable and we the potentials are sort of the punishments, the church lobby, against levies against people. You know for different transgressions and there are so many of them, and that was so specific and rich. They are you just realize people are just doing fucked up shit. All the time
and on one may Europe's main me is nuns weren't we want to be there. There is constant, thereby by circumstance and such Like the mother superior, isn't the most religious or the the you know, the most dot. wrong answer. They. Iceland has reduced the oldest people ever surviving in their like party girls, and so it was almost like. They were having you like crazy orgies all the time and it was hoping no one would look and it was. There was a crazy bureaucracy to the church. Obviously- and the higher up. You are in the church and you know you kind of want to look at her. So you you, you everything. That's blow you kind of like push it under the rug right, and so there was, there wasn't a lot of accountability. That was just like this shit show happening, and so at which a obviously in the the more demonic and evil way it had been happening with the the pedophile for centuries ages everything under the rug- you just hope it goes away because people are fallible and so that,
I always wanted to make this movie and then Joe Swanberg corner him forthwith yeah. He was crashing at my place and I was telling this idea and and we're actually watching dog tv and he was like this is amazing. You gotta make this movie, and so I called my producer, and she she she did my first. is an she's only the first to life after bath and dashing and she's like you're, not can believe this, but when the investors invested in or last two movies, yeah she's she's a time. Lady who's in tuscany and she's been asking for for, like four you as from the shootings me, will villages and you're literally asking shoot a video of those are not talk to me and what's in, like a month or two, we were in tuscany scouting, this woman marley marcucci's her family, like loaded from there in a plasma, in the twenties or cn like a warm plasma, okay, blood, and so she and then she brought mtv to she- did some version of mtv for italy, her family's just loaded and her a senator who runs the film commission. We were
crazily hooked up here. That I mean we can get. We don't have to spend as much. Money has been only word, because we have access to with this one guy I'll sondra baluchi, who is sort of our liaison. He was kind of a wine producer and he all the mayors of your little towns. I had all these relics in any relation to burden which he bird, who know relational, as is the common aim. The item I figured by that's not- and so I just it- I just snowball really fast. From this conversation I was humming with Joe too actually any on the ground, scouting locations, and then a couple months later we were shooting it. Now how heavily scripted was it not we was maybe like twenty five or twenty eight page outline a lot of improvising le died. was improvise. A story was not a prize but were allotted argument in the dialogues with the specific dialogue so that, the scenes are renounced what each person was in the same way as happening in that scene, but I,
after doing joshua, that might I sort of changed my process and- and I I start off as a writer- it's like a hardcore writer where you almost don't change a word at all. No improvisation and in the control that at that time, at that time, I just it's just how you were taught to to do stuff right. I actually I don't I don't mind. I like that. I like freedom- and I like things kind of like bleeding and yeah and sort of getting blurry here, and I also like how honest and authentic it sounds when people are saying their own lines instead of forcing someone to say something that doesn't sound real there's something more present about it, certainly, while they're looking each other eyes and connecting not knowing what the next person's going to say. So there we got a lesson yeah you have to and that's for acting that's the most important thing: it's not just waiting for the person efficiently. Like you see like really bad movies, you know like edward stuff, and you must see like the What kind of mouthing other persons eyes wing for their line is like that I have that weird habit. I know people that do that, while you're talking in real time really it's very odd
sam doesn't like when I, if I can just talking you now than it in your words, are not really finishing, but you I just like. I have a bead after saying what I'm saying is lowering or something I got laughing so delay. I think he's a listening and as he listens, mouths it It is a coping mechanism, because he's got some eighty or something he's like trying to figure out how to like. I just notice it as being a weird habit. Yeah. I I think some of it's finishing sentences, but some of it is just so. You know kind of like the way that people listen it's interesting. It is interesting, yeah I just I just found that that creates a more real, dynamic right and when how much? How much did you shoot the coming Why me how much voted against the weird thing about digital knee and after working with Joe? I think the real challenges is that sort of have an embarrassment of riches, usually usually, if at the time we are we we're under the gun. So you know we shot the whole in twenty days I pretty much have with the exception of just stuff that takes place The comment, if you see a location like friends, into charge or a field, every single thing that takes place
field was that they be asked us and those were stock and like eight or ten scenes a day, the sister of jam and threw it. So we didn't have a lotta coverage. So generally it's the first three takes, it's sort of a master yeah. You know some kind of wider yeah and then, after that, we just punch in and we're pretty much replicating what we did. But now tell me exactly what you were like he I mean I remember after we watched it, that you know talking about it as a comedy or or as you're necessarily trying to put it into a genre that it was not something you'd in I didn't feel like you wanted to do that don't want to do that ever I mean, I think what happens, especially with the way the media sort sort of like disseminated, everything is marketing, and so everything is labeling. Everything is working. Portmanteau icing ran, so your experience is almost creed. I just before you experience a visa and the only reason I'm doing this is to continue, creates expectation, creates expectations and he treats his appointments. Sure as if you're It really isn't it yeah.
communities Yasmine nancy cause and effect, but I think especially with comedies, but that word kommeni vague and you know there's like there's obviously like you know, levels to others. Call me it all that of, but I don't if it is like. I'm gonna write a comedy, I'm going to write a dark comedy. I just try to make my own thing and then what being as people try to sort of put their put like figure out a way to describe it, and then that is not really the best. You know what but you knew going in like that's what the interesting thing about that is rare. However, you want describe it, you know, you've got you know The actors I just mentioned in any bit parts you have fred. Mission, the ever offer men These are you know comedic actors really comedic actors, but for me a comedic actor, someone that can do comedy that isn't always doing. I know but like what they're known for that they're known for that right. Now, yes, but but curious to know? I guess are I got? It was hard to sit there with you in you know,
looking at a rough kind were wasn't, was really rough gotTA than I guess the credits, but it pretty tight and then they have to talk about it, there's a sort of I added, I mean, really know you, so it wasn't that I was diplomatic, but I was certainly trying to figure out how to talk to about now. Now, you showed it for a large audiences. You know what was the feedback was there's something more specific that you found resin with people, people the people say more than like. I was interesting or fun or you know I mean the good thing. when you do at announced. That's the your real fur time. Anyone the no one's, bringing an expectation that women, like you, said the casting their holdings. something is different, weird and new and indeed their surprise completely into some extent, I'm not in on not out of place in our amend a recognisable brand right. People have seen a couple of my movies. They know what you're getting into it's not gonna, be a straight up, comedy sure, and you know I think, one of the things that was really great. As I was hearing a lot of people saying like this, isn't anything like I've seen before
upload sort of, I think, stale comparisons. You know people I think automatically go to like python rocks, because you know those guys were doing period he's comedies right, and so that is something that people can go on to write in terms of, I think like in terms of the the craft in writing. Like that, I don't think anyone is that that kind of knows their way around stuff will identify that as sort of like a marker, I think it's more just sort of an easy way to digest it. Now, let's go back a little bit. I know we talked a little, but I don't I mean I retain some things, but you grew up in florida in miami in the middle of it and what I I can't imagine my amazon chaotic place. yeah, especially when I was growing up. We had because boy was that the eighties yeah as the eighties I mean I grew up pretty much at the height of the cocaine boom. So I got to see a lot of that like just people being gunned down in the streets and an insanity and coke money everywhere yeah. What do you remember about it
I remember my neighbor across the street was murdered. I remember a lot of my friends in school. Their parents were busted for either being smugglers or I went to. I went to private school for one year in eighth grade yeah, and then there was much of the actual drug deal like I got to go from pri. public school were everyone's like. You know that the closer you got was like, maybe they're down with a smuggler yeah. You know like rain that, both at night and then what the private schools, like their dads, were the kingpins right just for that one year, yeah yeah, everywhere. You look, there was coke and it was yeah. It was pretty. I am mainly vice like, but right right. That was the time an and in what your dad do again he's an attorney right right in here but he stayed above it. Somehow. Sort of I mean I don't like I might be speaking on term turn, but I and my all my family's from new york but yeah, and the only reason we were in miami was my dad got a job down in? offering an rafter graduated, and The guy who's firm, that John helliwell
sounds like conspiracy, theory shy, but o s, s is the precursor to the cia right, so the us was started was started by John all and wild donovan name is. Couple of other guys, and so they were, you know doing sort of you know The staff in ITALY and germany, like with partisans, to try to take down the fascists and then that ended up becoming ca, and so this guy ran the cia for a little bit. He was a lawyer and then after he left the cia, he started his law, firm, halliwell, Melrose and a wall for my dad got a job and effects we were there doing, was opening banks in the bahamas and the caribbean visa for the cia and drug dealers. They would take the drug dealer money and then use out for cia operations, uh huh and then, towards the end of it. Like the contra thing right, we talked about the dublin contracting here and I think a couple of the lawyers in that firm were busted for various, so they were running covert operations at the behest of the intelligence agencies outside if of the parameters of government, in fact the fbi
It came after John holywell because they saw what he was doing and nino the cia and the f b I are, are not best friends. And there they're they're coming after him, and I guess kind of proud of them out we ask you about the pass away this as they call just let it go, but I am I that's how he start off. Doing law is still around gazed around here I know to post somoza. he helped extradite vesco and he he was involved in a lot of weird latin american stuff. When you were a kid when I was a kid yes, he he didn't quite grasp it, and he still doubt because you can't, or else they'd have to kill you exactly yeah keep my kid out of it. Yeah stay in the dark, and what did your mom do? Just during the teacher will shoot. When I was a kid growing up, she was just a mom, then she went back to teaching how many brothers and sisters one brother oh yeah yeah. Is he out here now he's a detective he's a sergeant in the police and and in miami and in korea was in miami. That must be exciting. Yeah. Something gets high, speed
it says Ahrens awhile, and I mean I dunno. If he's actually pulled his gun and coral gables is like beverly hills, I'm sure yeah. So it's a lot of guys close yet request. That's good and super different, but yeah any in you. like your grandparents were new yorkers in that kind of thing, always captain in new york, so he always going up there How do you in order to be a kid that had your something something, a a spark you terms I, like film stuff will just like you know, being a fourteen year old who finds emo. I find that's a specific thing that like eating, because I guess I'm the same way in, and I don't know whether it was my mother was an artist and you know- and I always felt that that was important right there, there's something that hits you when you're younger, where you're like no art is where it's at whatever the fuck. It is yeah you're being outside, of whatever this norm is to find truth and defined. Yourself is is it something you don't have much control over either happens to you or doesn't, and you somebody that just do is the message to you somehow,
lucky. I had a bunch of those things kind of happen to me, yeah like what I remember. like like eleven we had with cable and yeah and my my bedroom. I was always watching tv, but I was watching movies all the time right and I one time a clockwork was on t v right and I caught it in the middle of it and my dad walked in and he's like, oh you're, watching that fucking weird movie, I'm like what is this thing goes, I think that's a clockwork orange and I'm like this is crazy and so Instead we went to the video store and I'm like dad like what's another crazy movie, I want another crazy moving he's like I dunno eight and a half is supposed to be crazy. I dunno, and so we rented eight and a half and I watch it and kinda crazy. That's what I mean he just for him is like just weird movies: it's just this one genre writer and and that's what made me wanted to film. So you rented eight and a half already rented it and a half of blew me away. I mean I was like probably too little to fully grasp it, but I knew nothing, I'm sort of like the inner stuff. Where you listen to it, pushing you an uncomfortable space and
you can either like shy away from it and turn off or kind of give into it and source see what happens and just trust that this artist knows what they're doing and that's what I did and because your kid in inherited grown ups. Why would you question the artistic integrity of either those things at lakewood? How old were you a lot and in this valine isaac? I definitely didn't have that sort of critical ability? Well, that's interesting because both of those movies visually are so you know unique and fucking. You know pow, you know they. They really punchy in the head. Yeah I gate and a half. Even if you don't know, what's going on you're going to be like what the fuck yeah you're just you can visibly absorb the style of it yeah you can't you don't even have to listen to it, but the themes are obviously the words out yeah. I think also my mom around that time too, She was a really big fan metamorphosis by kafka and you should read this and I read it and that blew me away. I was too young doing the stop like I. I was watching radar movies when I was like six or something yeah definitely was So you read metamorphosis. I mean I remember reading that night and I still can grasp it completely
yeah, I remember, reading it and thinking it was actually funnier than it was supposed to be. I was, I thought, we're supposed to be kind of sad messed up and I was like this is actually kind of guys. You are the guy's, a bug, but still just a matter of fact. Dryness of it. I I was drawn to so those are those that that was the trinity cubic many and kafka yeah. I blew your mind initially yeah for anger like there's something else out there remember the time. Bands was a really big thing for me. When I was a kid and if you target only movie, I yeah yeah yeah at the end of it really kind of messed me up, way were you know his parents. They have the the it's like a toaster The demons had is inside of it right and he's like don't touch the head and they touch it like justifying him, and then they explode and remember Dark that wasn't like you can get away with that kind of stuff you can if the parents will die the like that and definitely stayed with me. You sure you can get away with it year is going to be a popular movie. I dunno yeah, but so so What what do you do to begin your artistic journey? Do you pick your music or are air, or
or drawing or what was it. I was drawing all the time I was painting and took painting utilizes yeah, so you're like I'm, going to find it something what's going to stick yeah. It was even like I'm intentionally trying to me. I didn't even think I wanted to be an artist. I knew when I was eleven or twelve. I can remember when I was like monday, interrupter here yeah, but Before that it was always. You know, I don't have a good singing voice, but I like playing music les, I'm not good at any. Individual instrument ran like decent and all of them, unlike played drums, are or whatever, and yeah I was always writing and just sort of seemed like film was the thing that kind of brought all these things together that I had like a sensitivity to write and when you went to high school, what sort of what were the kids you were gravitating towards him cause I mean we want when you graduate high school ninety five I join eighty once hold different fuckin world. So so by now,
five there. You definitely had enough. Like minded people around, I would everything and my school was a super outlier to cuz and only in trouble, but the the principal at the time there were rumors that he was a coke dealer visa and he actually help me get HU a couple times like it was a completely carlos almost like the way it was completely a bill, Clinton style school where it was deafening, corrupt and sky, she, but it was ultimately like utilitarian and for the greater good right and so the I wish I was really like comiskey, like a tv show the way once I'm like the jocks and that the drama kids in the nerdy, kids and like the archie kids have rooms with each other. It wasn't like bullying and right. So it was like a really kind of, and when I went to school for, like five thousand Well, like I was a massive high school. I had a big one, two thirty four hundred yeah yeah, I mean there's, definitely like you know, gangs and shirts and stuff, but there was an overall vibe of like we're kind of in this together, which I didn't for any of the other classes,
my year I think we somehow figure something out of cool and the teacher we're pretty cool one guy, MR hood, who he actually passed away like ten years ago, but he he's. Cinematography class. So we actually make movies in class and watch movies. I would go see. Kozlowski is red with him and He always making me dogs of you know the the top. Superstar and oh yeah, give me blow up on vhs and he gave me some really cool movies and he was a big fellini fan and so he was also really big. Fan me like tripped out on low and he's he was awesome. Did you ever like, like watching of other ones, what red desert ya woof passenger yeah they're hard the great I just remember like just wanting it to make sense. Like I had this expectation which it seems like you are able to sort of jump over fairly young, just by virtual, what you're taking in where, where, if I get it or didn't make sense to me that I was missing something that I couldn't just
gideon you can a holistic experience now, could you yeah I think I am able to zone out sometimes yeah and I don't get conical I'll watch movies multiple times I'll watch a lot of movies more than one time and just kind of like, let it wash over me sure. Sometimes yeah yeah pick up the pieces. I I was At one thing I learned about the way you should see art. Isn't you you don't go to a gallery and see every single painting to stare at it and give it an assigned amount of time, yeah just sort of drift to what draws your attention and then focus on that and write your. you're not doing a chore. When you're watching art you're experiencing something and whatever resumes with you, you should come and go with that and also like. Sometimes I have found that that things that I I that may have caught my eye or resonated with me when I was younger or even if I didn't quite added or like the artist whatever medium. It was that as I get older and I go back to things, I'm like I would yeah I mean I have been with roxy music. I I love roxy music, especially the early stuff. Yes speaking about you know, but the later
I always. I think I had like a reaction to it because they. acting you know, and I kind of was defensive for a lot of sort of suave suits and cheesy roman yeah yeah, it's beautiful! I love it. It's grey! It's so good, so yeah, I dunno. If it was like there was the yeah there's a problem with Bryan ferry in in in terms of like taking him in yeah as a as an entertainer and as an artist like there's something about his stature. That sort of yeah he's almost like trying too hard to be charismatic, something it's like bowie. It's just effort lesson with area. It's like he's like check me out, yet it was a smooth yeah, the same reaction him like Leonard cohen, like I'm just now like it's now connecting with me connected from the beginning? Yes, like one of time, people because be. What was it just a big it so sparse to me. So I me I loved you, sir. I like mccabe, and mrs Miller is really one of my favorite movies, soda ever
I love those songs but liking to take on the whole winter. Calling catalogue at the further the time I watch mackay, miss miller. I just couldn't I couldn't grasp it or love melancholy, stuff. Yeah me too I still couldn't like I just there was something about all it. I didn't quite get and told not to hunger. That movie like like the more I watch out. It blows me away every fuckin tout so good. I mean that's some sound when I was trying to do with little hours, which is you know, finds a historical period and kind of time in a really contingent way. Instead of having a hit all those like points that you're expecting it to hit kind of it's fallible people and serve watch it. That's office, he opened his master, doing his thing be, but down the muses super inspirational. It's it's it's it's! in an insane movie, two to sort of like I feel like. I need to watch it again. It's I it's and I saw on the movies like a watch. You know california split the all time? Favorite movie, I I'm only every week really yet has
it is for me, or just the easiest things to watch their just like the language speaking. It's just. I digested insulin. I just love it like. I love it here, yeah in in in the if he picks the right, like in mccabe and mrs miller, that juncture of commerce, and the wilderness and then the other day. the old west, it was so fucking dense like it, but yeah You can watch a casually, but you know just want to investigate. You know that guy whose building that church yeah, I'm really. You could write a paper on that and then suddenly. Mackay of is that a general western would have mackay as the gunslingers, and we don't know his expert its we don't know how talented he isn't solely on the movie in a minute it second up, and so that in your service, watching this guy kind of hiding out and also but is also like, not only a flawed character but bordering on a comic character. Like you know, I had a discussion with somebody about the choice of the dirt, be that he's wearing yeah, because that-
it's a committee cat on some level right and that he was silent and anti hutton. It's a fancy. I bet it's also a chaplain happened. So yet you know when you start thinking about, bumbling around in his inability to connect. with this woman, whose year in his mumbling to himself that there is There is an almost slapstick nature to him and said so tragic as wall like his inability to connect with Julie Christie completely in a fact that are there there some particle, but there that there with limits to how far they're willing to go and that sort of unsavory choices they've made their lives, have sort of. I guess metallic. I stand here. They are that doesn't allow them to connect. So your first, I'm really learned about film in terms of practical in terms of technical things was in high school with this intimate, he glass yeah. I mean I was always messing around with video cameras and separate cameras. You have this stuff still have your movies national howsam. The ad did you digitize them. not yet now now I actually like how they're fallen apart, it's kind of amazing. What would you shoot
like what kind of sorting honestly I was it stop action stuff. Like knows, I was dramatic, creole immediate. You know like clicks stuff of people, not not a sandwich, animation yeah like most under one as a kid, I was watching the colonial in vienna and this is like a stupid story, but there. There was a show- and I can't remember the name of it like It- is not really like a great reference, but there's a showers like to people and the authorities would get on top of each other and make shapes like it would turn to like elephants or whatever arises by working together as a team, and so they would always ask for suggestions which are basically be like hastened, it's a thing and will be a tank or something, and then they could do. I sent them this like four page, and this is when I was like five or six years old and my dad helped me but courtroom, drama, yeah and they're. Just like we can't. You know this is not going to happen, so I was always trying to do something. A little more dramatic, I think than probably like. I was capable of doing yeah yeah a courtroom, drama, yeah and they're like this is not exactly for us and they sent me like a black beauty, vhs taped as like a consolation prize but yeah. We we don't act. We just of managerial? Our modesty, I did you
did you picture them in your courtroom? Drama doing oh yeah and I was so into it. I was you know is like I think, as a lawyer, so I was looking up to him. I probably wanted to be a lawyer at some point and then I was like this is a great story I'm going to tell and they just were not having it. So what was the first piece of cinema that you but together that you thought had you know with solid dies or act in this area, For n Y: u yeah! I I did a short film to get into more you yeah. That was. It was with my teacher, MR hood, who I referenced before. A kid who rises. Parents are cannibals and pretty was pretty fun. Was the and it was like the most. I guess professionally done thing. I did a a contest for twinkies that they did it. They asked us to do like When I asked us to ask people to do like a short piece for four legs the thing that has to do with twinkies yeah and I did some random ass laika mixed together, a bunch of short film tropes. You know like filling
in and truffaut. I was in high school and we got second place. I think second A lot of tweeters were at what one first I dunno it wasn't like. There was no internet back then so it wasn't like you really were able to like do that. I had to do, that kind of research. You have to go real, deep, yeah yeah before the internet. Yeah do you know a guy that can give me the tape of the winter yeah right. So when you went to why you, when you moved to new york, you know is at the big gun. Like what were you setting out to do? I want to be a filmmaker and I wanted to not go to a campus school. I didn't I wanted to serbia in the world around them. I in miami is great it is our meeting all my friends are great, but I just can't wait to get other like it. It was to me like a nonsense, but it was. It was definitely like something that was limiting yeah yeah. There was no cultural cultural element, like I think. design district, there is an element now of
was romero brito. I don't if that artist, but he's like a and of bad version of Keith haring. That's really colorful like there's a lot of money, but not a lot of taste, not allow tasted, it's it's like l, a minus, the mountains and minus the entertainment culture is right. You just get all the negative stuff you get literally people domino, member, guineas and fraud. As you know, the amis shirts india so like I was to get out of that and go to a place. I mean. Nor, for me, always was a place I want to live. My parents are from there. You know every every piece of film that there yes I'll femmina, yet and did you them where you're like? Was there anyone when you went to college, did you oh yeah, all my cousins and my aunts and uncles live there I mean pretty much. I remember my family was in new york, except my grandparents and my parents, everyone, my everyone else was up there, so I say you go to n and what do you? What do you? What do you learn? I mean if anything just how to how to on set. They don't teach how to get a job, they don't teach too. You know how to write stuff
I just need you to have a format, how it breaks down, how it breaks down and and how to do it naga, not specifically what to do via and so for me that was really invaluable. I don't I don't. I didn't want people telling me how to make stuff. I mean about what yeah. I have an idea of what I wanted to go for, but how do you how to load the camera? How to light something? You know how to record sound all that stuff is really have a good memory. So I'll, remember all that stuff like I ended up, shooting everyone's movies in school, so how to format a script, how to format a script. What program years yeah all it's super important, but I never was I never thought of it as a lot of people. I know that went to school. There kind of like talk down on it, yeah as if it was like, I understand why I was greatly to be able to live in new york city as that at that age he has to be a nominal celia blend in, but also be able to meet. The thousand I knew there was a lot of really cool creative stuff happening, especially with independent film and who your classmates, who are your teachers whenever we now I had a for a time cinema called Antonio Mona, the added the heated of doing the common.
Any half the hunt and the criterion version. Add a couple kids that I went to school with a kind of became stuff like on jobs and leaves men he directed club The titans are one of the classes, oh yeah, we shoot and stuff. I It was shewn stuff sure who are using his actors. Any new yorker people that you know you actually rob Delaney, so he School together was eighteen, so he wasn't like he was my guy You knew him through the crack up. I knew him you're huge. He was leaving my house, so we're hanging out that night and with a friend who's I who he grew up with and they're kind of hanging out in my place. Two in the morning I didn't I was too young was like twenty two. I think the time he wasn't I didn't see all the warning signs of what was going on, but on yeah he left my house and went to a friend's house was having a party two in the morning and he was one of the guys like it would bring over six pack for himself right, but
were that when you are young, aroun, just kind of parting, and yet you knew there. I worry that duke and drink lobbied in cuba two I nodded off affluent yeah the weekend before it got a little dark, because we, I was doing this documentary on world strongest man competition. Here. I found this pocket of guys up in Sacramento that we're trying to do this that thing to go pro and He came up with me and helped me like kind of work on this documentary and he was drinking a lot and then it got a little bit dark and then we we came back and then left to go to this party. Basically a two in the morning. Unlike what you're doing- and I guess he saw drinking blacked out and the ashes took off five million into the water building or something he took. A bunch of metres No, I mean I've talked to and yeah. And, yes, you are sober a long time, but you know we went into depth about that event. Yeah. I know that was I've never seen something as transformative for persons that I mean that that it's. If there is a chapter shift. Like things change
but I mean it on all fronts like he. He had allowed stuff going for him like he was. He started getting casting callbacks and things. when you're like twenty twenty two, then, in a after that is knees and his elbows robust it and he can go out, and you know that Firstly, a the you, you become like a like this, a tourism It's like there's no catholic, a new catholic grammar, and so it became his whole life and then you know, I think slowly he served a got the bit more balance and sigh, but I mean he's normal are people in the world and you used him in college in movies. Yeah he's in my first movie for a second in life after Beth yeah, and I always want to work with him, and I love him. He he's doing well, yeah he's doing so We did how he did. One big film in college or short films, or I did much the short films yeah and my thesis film didn't happen. My my teacher didn't turn in my insurance form and he just disappeared like two days before we're supposed to start shooting his teacher disappeared yeah. This total jackass like he was
premature they giving alarming for young liking oconnors. He you, you got the insurance that he, but you getting other film equipment out from allows us and unity. during one or because you're, a student like northern careers at visa. And he never turned it in and then like went a wall and so and why you felt bad and they're like hey? Why don't you just come back for another year and we'll guarantee you know that an allotment but like they wanted? We spent forty grand to go back to the decision your europe again, and that was why would you do that? Yeah exactly so you have to a u s, film school and came right out here. Camera hairs are working for robertson bacchus on one we will be doing that what lies meeting castaway I got really lucky cause. I offer and moved out here show me what recently resume was, which was like ridiculous. It said it's born in soften. I didn't. I didn't know what you're supposed to do on a resume who says so I put down
I was born in miami and it turns out the guy who runs chakra this guy jack rap you who ends runs max's company hughes from miami and once on why, even though he was I was like a second coming. So he hired me, and so I got to work on while lesbian cast away like a pa and was really fun. You were on castaways appear yeah, not not in not in fiji are Bora right. It was just the ehler stuff and so you write in it as ryan inch yeah and, like I grew up, I was a big times and mcas fan, like I love back to the future and who framed roger rabbit yeah, I really loved used cars for some reason. I used cars with Kurt russell Yeah, oh yeah, so good did with zemeckis I can do yeah. He was really sweet like whenever I would go. I mean I was pretty much just doing. Go go for runs concert, but he would always let me kind of come. I sit and watch them work. I remember time he like hey jimmy, or go get Steven at the gate and bring him to me. I'm like right and there's a guy named steve, Starkey who's as producer near homes is assuming I'm going to go get. This is like the literal day, one of my job
I see this like turquoise explore pull up in Steven Spielberg's, so I have to take Steven Spielberg to him and like it I mean that was like mind blowing I remember Steven Spielberg was giving me a pep talk em, you know bob's great guy and you're in great hands and seven hundred and two so surreal in enso. but they knew you were lit up and allegiant right, yeah, but that's not the, best combo for like an office worker like my pa, can work against you, like I'm sitting there like looking at all the film stuff and they're like what can you go, get the dry cleaning and make sure I have enough oranges and make sure I have my petty cash like that's, that's. your job is right, but like I'm like okay cool but unless want to surf, say her for like a little longer so yeah. And how long did you work for zemeckis like almost a year and then I started working? David Russell, so so hundred twenty one. Twenty twenty two where you living
it must feel. As I believe, I've lived in LOS feliz the whole time. I've been in l, a that's, pretty good move, yeah and Uruguay, connecting with people of your age and, like you, got a crew out here. Yeah then, like everybody, was doing their pa work or getting their little breaks here and there yeah like who were your crew. A lot of them, you kids some I hung out a lot actors honestly yeah. I dunno why, as always, I'm friends with tons of actors and yeah, it's like fun and then sort of like kind of find a way or not find their way in like become pastry, chefs and softeners. You have like find their own thing, but yeah yeah, yeah yeah that it was definitely fun. So you go right from Zemeckis to David, o russell how'd. You get the job with David o Russell I applied. To a jobless add for a director who is looking for an assistant- and I not at it. So I implied, and then I met him at the had interviewed me and as our putting forward disaster on laser desk, which is like super Dana, I was putting the laser disc on, as he call to say, will you come in and meet with me? I had no idea who it was, and so
is working on some online documentary that ended up nothing. Nothing ever came of it, but I just start saw stuff for him. by the time, You started working for him. He had made spanking the monkey he had made for him without just finished just finished three kings. Asters great movie and some amazing, perfect beer and some are fine shut I don't know the people talk about it enough some great acting in it too, I mean that's my I think. That's my favorite movie of his that's with Ben stiller. but sir Leon yoni resurging rowlands, roy on all the lily tomlin near it. I got on more amble, comedy yeah and you know it was like a it's almost a genre movie in a way right. It's like a road trip, finding herself movie Railways funny on whose parents are right is undoubtedly right. Watch that again. Oh it's! So great cause, like
I was spanking a monkey. I've watched a few times forty with disaster, a couple of times I like in three kings. I I watch whenever possible. I should probably own it because there's something so the that movie to me is sort of a masterpiece. Somehow definitely I yeah, I'm talking about not having a real genre. You know it's an action movie. It's little it's funny. It's it's got pathos. You it's shot really. Well, you know it's. It's whip, smart yeah! It's really amazing movie! In so time I mean, I guess it's timely. I mean, I would say timeless cause it's have an eu, and I remember about it I'll always in you're, getting back to blood and guts and getting back to satire, which I think three kings probably isn't away definite. I would, that's army an army in sure I'll is that is that weird cut away to the inside of the body in a david thought. That's yes! I read them off without because it shows the sepsis without the bridle ryan and writer. Seeing the effective yeah he's pretty comment that cs. I read them
well whatever he may have been convinced of, or not that I thought that as a specifically satirical device that that yes, there there's something that goes beyond humanising by just making that choice. To do that by taking the time to show a bullet and inside the body that is so, like you know specific, but you know the in the humanity of it is disturbing. I mean it's like the the I guess, the more grounded version of when Austin powers on when he runs the guy over with a steamroller. Then you see the wife get the call the henchmen henchmen his wife, getting a call. He die and she's like super distraught yeah, which is like you never go that far right, yeah yeah and then that liking, but it also it's sort of like you know it's just that the raw goods The animal diseases what's happening bright, yeah, gets glossed over I mean I, I remember I had a panic attack. One time when I saw avatar in the movie avatar here, I saw that and I've searched tripping out on fact that using thousands of people die and everyone has a life as well, at sonder, when you, when you serve projector project
Alice right, right, yeah and then just with the sheer number of people there dying in the lives of I just I've, like literally lost it when I watch that movie, I'm like this is like a nightmare. I hate this wow yeah, yeah I mean when I have those feelings it is overwhelming, especially if you have you know and you know brain which is sensitive. that the amount of anxiety available. If you open yourself up to those possibilities is like you know, can be an island. the into a annihilating you pull out how to avatar have had panic attack, oh yeah, I I just realized. I never had a panic attack before it was literally my only panic attack. I I knew I was having a panic attack. I know when you're having a panic attack you're supposed to realize you have a panic attack, can breathe a little and you're not having a heart attack and you're, not rye yeah, but it took awhile. It was definitely like, oh my gamer, So what did you? What would you learn piano with David O'Russell? Who is notoriously difficult well, when I came on with him, we merely sleep tight, we're soup,
tight. We took you under his wings under his wing, but at the same time treating me as an equal know how it was in the things of tea. I was like twenty three: how old is he he's he's twenty years, older, okay, so if he had done four movies. I guess at that point ahah or three movies out those three movies and genius. Super genius and I mean so talented and I that time we arranged together to me is like one of the highlights of my life cuz. He was we we're on the same wavelength and he so talented, and taught me how to sort of haven't ear for things. How did you get to a point where he said? What's right together entering as what of gore. If I p a, I mean I was an assistant assistant, editor or assistant, yet what they happen was. I am. This is like if this is like much, but I have this weird dream this one night. I was driving in a in a car, and I saw this big white sphere and I
I knew as a motorcycle and I flipped it and I got like a amid a little like dent on it. Yeah and I was like oh shit and as I was driving, I saw a cop behind that thing and I saw him put his lights on, I'm like oh shit and then just my remarks I saw a green truck was controlled hit me and I was like great now the cops and me more focus on that accident, like that it so the next couple days. I was super paranoid about getting in a car accident and cut to two days. Or I was at franklin, western and south late, and I looked at my review- mirror and I saw green truck. Lose control and hit me from behind and I got out to like deal the accident and it's all stuff in the air and some of the goddamn ii, whatever I went to David's house tom, what happened? Everyone was like tripping out about this dreams. I told my girlfriend at the time about the dream and then, like literally got hit by a green truck, and david was like fixated on this. What is the thing that I hit in his white sphere? and then, as the day went on, I got really messed up and I had to his wife took me to the eye doctor and turns out an ulcerated cornea, because I wear contacts and I got a piece of tuscan in there and start eating it away, and I would have gone blind
and then we realize, like me like knocking off the cap of the white thing with my eye. Is this whole crazy thing so like two, because I I had this ulcerated corneas how to put these drops in every hour on the hour, and I couldn't really sleep and I was losing my shit and I think he felt really bad. We start telling me about some of these ideas. He wanted to work on. Tell me about the hook, his idea. There was another looking, so we worked on and they certainly spit, balling ideas at me and we have liquor, especially when we were doing the editing stuff, have like a real, easy sort of report in terms of creative stuff, while you're editing that online thing he was working on cars like when you're missing a scene or when you have a scene that leads to another scene. It's not exactly working. You gotta find the glue between us. I would start pitching ideas, you know, and he, and so he just started kind of sp ideas off me and then we just together and then I was like twenty four twenty five and working with him, not sorry what four scripts together How can these Huckabee is? We did like meet the fox. Yours version like a meat, isn't the fuckers meet the meet the fockers, and then we did this sketch. I love that
the best thing we wrote about this dermatologists too, like joins basically the form or foreign beer and then you know, becomes a mess and a camera. The other thing we done never made it to screen now new and got it and servants around so, but ya dylan in the works. Now is no answer and that's how much money is it but we are yet. it sounds like a really good way of working like we would say each other and just passed the laptop between each other and it was like. We shared a brain, and I just so much for him like what the main thing I learned, is sort of how to juggle characters. At the same time, you know how to create distinct characters. In a situation. He calls him confidently confabulation, sia and sort of like let that scene play out and so I've always been drawn to lay chaos, and you know large groups, and but I don't Arbitrary chaos like where you kind of are able to track like he can actually parse through it and say like oh, this is that tackiness is, persons doing in this is where their motivation is and how,
collides in that it actually works out in a way. That is chaos, but there is a logic to it right, and so I think well that about that. In a way yeah I mean ensemble comedy is here you know people gunnar crashing into each other and just all the stuff and the so. I learned a lot about that from him. and he saw movie all the way through I mean you guys rode how copies and then you are on set with it. For most part, yeah yeah and that would that's a difficult movie. I liked that movie a lot and I don't know why necessarily, I think you know what I mean like nah. I watch it and I like right when the first time I saw it I'm like well, this is like absurdism. This is like a eugenie in Esco play. This is a forest. Some kind and I don't know that I could completely understand it. I don't you know like. action, the thing that triggered my my analysis of it was a marky marks. A fireman. I dont know why, but just showed-
is a virus, and I what the construction. What was the intent? I mean David had a dream about a detective following him around in his everyday life. So he wanted to do something where a person is sort of charting your every move and served to mean an existential analysis. Instead of you know. Eagle or agus right, namely, got a philosophical, now a philosophical analysis that a metaphysical vehicles offer going out right and he kind of hers it's me and I was always drawn to philosophy. I read a lot of philosophy and studied a little bit and have always been interested in that, and I think the timing of it was an auspicious in terms of I as I said in a lot of people, are coming out of nine eleven and there is this shift. I think in terms comedy especially with sincerity here. You're, not eleven. It was ok. Sincere again, I think we're out of the nineties. Everything was so ironic and so glib and so sort of harsh and acidic, and I think, all of a sudden people had a more it's kind of come together
and you know the reason why warburg's character as a firefighter is obviously nine eleven right and so he's the kind of person who up until that point, would have just oregon coasting through life and kind of doing his thing and then all of a sudden, someone that you don't associate with having deeper thoughts and sort of going deep, not that firefighters don't have deep thoughts, but in general we sort of don't. I attached that our idea of them change yeah. We already have she changed, and then you know, especially after the way it all kind of played out. Then we'd go to war and like why We go to war with it because we want justice is because we're just its socio economic petrodollar stuff like what, What are we doing here, and so I think people have those questions, and I think that kind of- and there is also I call new age because that's of I cheapens think she but there is sort of a metaphysical sort of openness that sort of occurring have started occurring around that time as well. You know you saw it the how yoga started blowing up, and you know people were more common about their diet and socially
everyone's us or taken stock. I think after that and the reverberations I think, we're still feeling and obviously, but yet at that time it sort of fellow, That was what we were kind of connecting with and David, and I will if specifically missis, really on a buddhist path. The point is I don't think he has any more, but we were. We were then we got wayne and some of these ideas were sort of percolating and I think we just create a sort of mish mash and, like a pastiche of all these different things that were like calling from right yeah I mean the I. The crazy thing is. I was a studio film like he. He like imagine like at one point that was gonna, be a warner brothers movie like marvel. We're supposed to make that movie and then they're, just like obviously like we're smarten, you know for them like that, doesn't make any sense, but who ended up making a searchlight fox searchlight and how did you guys feel about it. Are you I haven't seen since it came out like it, it was definitely there's what you
intend to make them as well as being made there and I mean truly, I wasn't on at the end of it falling out a little bit here I mean cause I e in I've heard rumors about. You know what happened on sat, and you know that you know he kind of lost his mind and whatever and you know, I don't know that you can speak to that, but whatever you guys grew estranged yeah yeah I don't wanna get too we. We grew estranged and still. yeah I mean it was you know it was a lot of stuff happen. A lot. A lot of crazy shit went down so like a it's, not I always respect him and love him for who he is because Is a true visionary and a rebel, and that's it's hard to sort of separate someone's art and their soul and their actions yeah, but you know he's a true
and he's a super genius and when we are writing gather, it was well highlights in my life like I'm in one time we were, he got. Where, from amherst guessing went to Amherst and we got wind of incidents. Coolio is giving us a speech to this like pre law class. There a cameraman him because he was argues that he's using was our case. He was like a pretty Whatever it was, so we snuck in and it was horrifying cause he's. Not my yeah and school. It was goin off without the constitution and how you know you're not was the odyssey his whole take on it is it's not a living britain document? It's it's a set of laws that are very clear and you know you do think about what the framers thinking of interest- could apply that don't he's in a regional list. You d, You don't think of it as something you can interpret, because you cried Herbert a laugh right because then anyone can interpret law is subjective, so many he was saying like back then a felony. It was if, if you commit a felony, it was instant death and he goes on, not like now, so it's pretty effective huh and it was like so like ugh, like you're, just going to kill someone for fun, and then I remember
So at some point We were being rushed out and David goes through some adam liking. Oh, how dare you within the the gore election and then I'm he goes school leaders have has. dignity like how dare you interrupt my process and then I said, will you after the election and then like? Who are you guys and they started screaming us, and then we ran- and we I remember, running through the quad like just running, for our lives away from this thing. That was like so much fun you, you and David are resin running from Scalia and his like cronies yeah. It was awesome wow so like there was a lot of fun stuff that happened with us and, like honestly creatively, I don't think I've ever met anyone that I've identified with as much in it was like a real education, but you know I'll bring it around Maybe I'm your man opposed to us. As you know, people change in sure people do stuff, that's kind of hard to swallow right. You know. So,
when that happened, it sort of whether the timing was right or not, or whether it was a good thing out felt at the time a kind of what doubts when he took up on your own I mean that was directly related to that, so the the I think was like the fourth week forming an icon piece, peace out, I started writing my first script on my own. That ends, my first movie life after Beth, and you made that I made, I made it and making it. Ten years later, I wrote in like two thousand and three would do for ten years. I was this, studio jobs. I was like doing rewrites and stuff and really yeah. That's what you were able to get from working with David that had done some rewrite, yeah mean my first thing. I wrote became a feature that got produced so, like you get an excuse to share the credit yeah. It was me and him
like what kind of rewrites were you doing cause I rewrite rewrite hers or are sort of unsung. Sometimes, hero, sometimes guys just making a buck but yeah. It's amazing how many people I know that are credited for anything, but did a pass on big scripts I did a pass a bunch stuff, I camera anything that, like It was a lot of stuff I that there was a couple of originals that I mean I'm dealing with studios, and I mean I dunno. If, if you you can tell by my last movie it's and I don't have necessarily the most likes videos. It is that just a a fee thing where they're like give this kid, twenty five grand or ten grand and let him do pass, and that's that I was the only originals too. So if you're getting paid a lot of money to your writing, rewriting original scripts yeah, it's not like I'm doing a policy, you had a script, a script deal yeah. I was always doing scripts for years and I think you know coming off of that experience. I was in and three I wrote life after both to direct almost made it
searchlight it got really close and then it kind of fell apart. The last second, I think I was discouraged and I'd never wanted to be a writer. I wanted to be a director and when you have a script, what does that mean? It's like? You got three a three script. It's I didn't have like an overhead yell. I would just do java jobs dot, they would send me they'd, send me scripts and then, if I like, identify with them, I thought I could fix them or if it was an idea that I thought like we'd be funded more than I would do it but you know eventually like we're out its welcome and I just start getting back into trying to direct, but I think the whole experience as that. Poor time period was like a little bit dark here, and so I try to like because of what went on with David yeah and just sort of like a yeah. The whole time was like so I disillusionment definitely more than slight yeah. Oh yeah yeah. I like what you could and couldn't do in this town I like what you can get away with Wyatt what people were open to letting happen, and it's like what wasn't allowed to happen and how can you make what you want to do happen yeah and then you're just sort of like okay? I got it and then obviously the as the economy started going south and, if
if you start tracking that time highlight creatively of the many major studios yeah all these different guys. You know was airs and david alzheimer pain, spike jones. There are, blossom around that time? a little bit after that does come. start shutting down like there's anymore, independent, even tons of places that It's for that kind of style of filmmaking I think now you're starting to see a kind of come back like it's coming back in vogue, and you see a new generation of people trying to do this thing, but for a good run there it just disappeared. That's when you started getting all the superhero kind of comic book thing, right: action, movies and science fiction's. They need to make the big bucks yeah the other avenues, much more reductive, and especially when the economy, when south, like I guess, and between two thousand summit, two thousand and nine that was like the death knell for all those guys. You know, like everyone, harder I'm gonna make it s not happen so well. Did you pull yourself together? To put you make your first movie just kind of happen. Like I mean,
taken who runs around americans so zoetrope, he kind of figured system, with the tax credits in los Angeles ia and he's like dude, we can make a movie four million dollars. Do you have anything you want to do and what ultimately She was what I had wanted to this back in, like two thousand and eleven or something to twelve. I wanted, it got movie, I got together chris proud and is: was palliate and I our thing ali Adam pally, Chris Pratt, Jake, Johnson and Ben. got together and we're going to make this movie and then his mom passed away, and so I had to tax, credit and then we're like ordering adieu and then obvious agent. Remember the scripts that I read written life after bad things like what about that it'd be perfect for auburn, I was like holy shit like I wrote. It about. You know this, like seven years private matter and like I don't know who else would have done that like right? Was they getting so additional or some we are talking about, but here that that like no one can do it obviously not movie announcing it? But it's like it's basically like a vehicle for obvious, even though I do know who she was right and
and then we just jam that through like at the Lhasa as a lot of my movie, moves have been like last second like jumping on opportunities. Instead of like careful plotting for years yeah, it's almost like sort of reading the tea leaves and being like okay. This can happen right now and I gotta move real quick, haha yeah I thought Josh was great. I enjoyed it, but but yeah this. This idea of of you know fate. comes and goes like. What did you study when he studied jewish mysticism lay what specific thing I mean. What did you take from it, I got when's my sisters in the one point. I don't know how that went down. I think when I was a kid I was studying about sure if spain and all the different words that come from arabic words from the moors life there's this year, when zenith and the deer and one of was an alchemy yeah chemistry came from, and I was just we're blown away by this idea of alchemy of that there are people that think they can turn lead into gold and live forever and like as a kid, that's amazing, but I
like let go of that fear, and so especially as I gone to highschool card, I was always reading. You know works that had to do with alchemy, not not like you ain't stuff, but like literal original works and the couple hours like the jewish mysticism, features prominently in that stuff. Like that worldview of this idea, repairing there's this thing called to coon, where you do you find this sparks of divinity and trash basically and elevate it to make it divine, is the the basic premise alchemy via- and so I was definitely you know into all that occult shit when I was in college like like how far Why wait? What? How did he lose your life? I mean at one point to the lesser banishing ritual of the pentagram yeah. So like shit like that, but I mean I was, I wouldn't say like I'm an occultist, but I there's some poetic and beautiful about it. Almost artistic and I think, as an artist opening itself up to that process. Where I am ultimately all that stuff? As a metaphor, you're a fool if, if you're talking,
in a mystical philosophy of the middle ages and renaissance. It's I don't know what percentage of the people thought they were really turn letting the gold, but it's there's warming or saw em, and you can call young stuff. We call you super identified, how that is completely limiting or not mimicking, but Maria what's going on in our brain we and how our unconscious works with our conscious mind, and so there is something to be said about that and I think opening yourself up to that kind of like logic or I don't know if it's but serve that imagery and not survive. Allegory allegorical stuff right. It allows a common creates. A conduit for I guess creativity yeah, but you also have to be careful that you, you have some context in place or it can get pretty crazy making like also- the golden dawn. Well, I mean well that that had a context. You know that that practical magic business- but even in reading ino, mystical taxes and yo looking at it is allegory that gory that sometimes
the dark side of that you get hung up on it or or sort of crossing over into being like this is real. We get into the adventure code land there. I can cut. Crush you in the same way that avatar for sure I mean I definitely read holy blood holy grail, but I also read for coe's pendulum by umberto eco, which is poking fun at satire of all that kind of stuff too, and I always have a sense of humor about it yeah. It was never like you know, wearing robes, and you know trying to conjure up demons. If anything, it was more just For me, it was more just kind of coming up with a cosmogony like trying to come, with a worldview trying to come up with like some structure to the universe via that isn't as obvious as religion or science, yet that there is something like I feel like you can tap into. That is a little bit bigger than us. That has a structure to it yeah. So that was always what was really interesting. I never really wanted to manipulate it, for my own ends sure, but I did feel like there is some kind of sympathy there, but you do believe in. Like the you know, the
z of dream and the the the the the the doobie timing of things that transcend coincidence, absolutely. I mean I've had dreams that come true like obviously The weird eyeball thing I've had weird out of experiences. I was able to verify you know like with people. I was able to see people. wingstop as they were doing it, and then they were able to like say that actually happen so I don't necessarily think that that's supernatural, I think it's natural I just don't understand the extent of it or the You know what parts of our brain have been shut down. necessity to function as humans. And I think it was maybe not even necessity. Maybe that were shut down for us to be civilized. Like seneca said the stopping us from walking and water is our doubt. You know like, obviously like then you not think of it, but yeah I think like the ability of our minds are obviously we. We don't know to what extent what we're capable of so
we were connected to over how how reconnected- or you know like I've, all kinds of stuff and there's ideas that our brains are two spatially antennas and we're just picking up in signal signals, see and that's what we are right, but I don't know I I'm just I don't have any answer. I just know there's a lot more going on than we explain good good. am I'm happy to know that thanks for talking to me man, of course- all right man that was a high octane conversation intensive engaged in good, like that guy, smart guy, good director, interesting fellow As I said earlier, the little hours is now playing in new york and l dot, a it's going to be expanding throughout the country, soon play some guitar, it's been a few days. I know out of your just clamouring to hear me fuckin noodle and repeat myself hold on said dead, deaf black cat boys meditation. I think I try to do that
the by death, black cat, boomer lives,.
Transcript generated on 2022-08-01.