The Reeler

Sundance Features

January 25, 2008

Rob Meyer, Aquarium

"I sort of started from scratch in terms of learning how to write a screenplay or cast. I learned by doing."

Lisa F. Jackson, The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo

"10 Darfurs have happened in the Congo in the last 10 years. Four million people have died. It's unimaginable."

January 24, 2008

Azazel Jacobs, Momma's Man

"I wanted to figure out a way to hold on to some things that I knew I wouldn't be able to hold on to in the future."

Signe Baumane, Teat Beat of Sex

"The episodes are a take on sex from a woman's point of view. Do you know why women need panties?"

January 23, 2008

Alex Rivera Sleep Dealer

"This film really ought not exist. It's science fiction spoken in Spanish; the hero is a futuristic migrant worker."

Ari Gold, Adventures of Power

"It's about a person who wishes he had drums discovering the drums within himself. It's a spiritual story."

January 22, 2008

Boaz Yakin, Death in Love

"It's really about the cycles and the psychological patterns that are passed down from generation to generation."

Tim Sternberg, Salim Baba

"It's one of those happy stories that hopefully happens more than once in your cinematic life."

Courtney Hunt, Frozen River

"We didn't have favorable conditions. We had very little funding. What we had was a good script, and people fell back on that."

January 21, 2008

Alex Gibney, Gonzo: The Life and Work of Hunter S. Thompson

"Like Hunter, I think I'm motivated as somebody who always wants to see the underdog have his or her day."

Dan Beers, FCU: Fact Checkers Unit

"Bill Murray looked at the script and said: 'Eight pages. It took three guys to write eight pages? That's impressive.' "

Dee Rees, Pariah

"I really liked the feel of the outer boroughs and just wanted to tell a story that we don't particularly see."

January 20, 2008

Carlos Brooks, Quid Pro Quo

"The best detective stories are the ones where the detective ultimately realizes he's been investigating himself."

Tanaz Eshaghian, Be Like Others

"Everyone else takes it as common sense, but not fitting in shows what common sense is."

Brett Wagner, Chief

"I'm drawn to all of those sort of grungy urban scenes that inspire all of us in New York. That's all been transplanted to Hawaii."

January 18, 2008

Peter Glanz, A Relationship in Four Days

"I wanted to take the genre of New Wave -- the fun of it -- and exploit the modern relationship."

Amy Redford, The Guitar

"After a while, when reading the script, I kept firing myself as the actress and hiring other people in my head."

James Marsh, Man On Wire

"In a sense it's kind of a bank-robbery film -- not to steal something, but to give something."

January 17, 2008

Jan Schütte, Love Comes Lately

"New York is a great background for this kind of story, but we had to fight just to find a crew."

Myna Joseph, Man

"Luckily I had an adviser who said, 'I noticed you've been producing a lot of the boys' projects. I want you to stop.'"

Daniel Barnz, Phoebe in Wonderland

"The irony of being tortured as a kid is that you become weirdly grateful for it later in life."

January 16, 2008

Craig Lucas, Birds of America

"So much of what matters in the story is in the white space, and the lives felt lived instead of 'conceived.' "

Justin Nowell, Sick Sex

"I was very relieved to see that we're playing before Kirsten Dunst; hopefully people won't have walked out yet."

Austin Chick, August

"It was definitely a challenge to do something that was period when, in all the obvious ways, the world looks the same."

January 15, 2008

Ryan Fleck and Anna Boden, Sugar

"The guy is caught up in the baseball machine; it's a huge industry and he's just one piece of it."

Nanette Burstein, American Teen

"It's hard because I really just want to be their friend, but at the same time I do have a job to do."

Dana Adam Shapiro, My Biodegradable Heart

"It's just a fun little movie made in a loft above an old movie theater -- four friends drawing silly pictures."

January 24, 2007

Brian M. Cassidy and Melanie Shatzky, God Provides

"This massive event was happening so close to us, but what we were seeing did not ring true with us."

January 21, 2007

Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg, The Devil Came on Horseback

"It’s not a history lesson; it's about a man who found himself a witness to something he never anticipated."

Jennifer Fox, Flying: Confessions of a Free Woman

"It created a horizontal dialogue and kind of flipped the power balance... They just start grabbing the camera, and the dynamic totally changed."

Christopher Zalla, Padre Nuestro

"That's what essential New Yorkers are -- they're outsiders who have come here to chase something."

Tze Chun, Windowbreaker

It feels great, obviously, but it took a long time to get to this point. I think I probably submitted about six shorts before I got in.

Bé Garrett, A Nick in Time

"I'm realizing that this thing is a lot bigger than I ever thought it was. And it's starting to feel pretty cool."

January 20, 2007

Justin Theroux, Dedication

"If someone as much as crosses their legs you break into a flop sweat. With every frame there's just this anxiety I've never experienced before."

Zoe Cassavetes, Broken English

"Everyone feels ashamed, hopeful, ambitious to some level, so even though it has the glamour of New York, people everywhere will get it."

Jason Kohn, Manda Bala

"This is one of those movies, you know, I sold my car to make. All that typical bullshit, you know?"

Amir Bar-Lev, My Kid Could Paint That

"Part of what the film is about is being able to draw your own conclusions rather than throwing your hands up in the air and saying, 'It all looks the same to me.' "

James C. Strouse, Grace is Gone

"It's not a film that's over and you say, 'Oh, I understand. The war is bad.' I tried to let it be as complicated and troubling as possible."

January 19, 2007

Craig Zobel, The Great World of Sound

"I wanted it to be like how weird it feels to have somebody say, 'Don't walk out of here and turn your back on your dream.' "

Rory Kennedy, Ghosts of Abu Ghraib

"It's not just looking back at Abu Ghraib, but also about looking forward ... We have a lot of policies in place right now that are arguably very encouraging of torture."

Marco Williams, Banished

"You look out the window and see the Confederate flag flying. Outside the chamber of commerce!"

Jake Paltrow, The Good Night

"I had three pictures I'd written that didn't happen. In the meantime, I was directing television and trying to get these movies made. It was difficult."

Paul Chan, 1st Light

"We've been working with the model of this window... I think it’s the 21st century, and perhaps we can think of something that's post-window."

R. Luke DuBois, Play and Academy

"I think it's interesting how in every cultural medium we have in the United States, we have some kind of weird ranking system to try and figure out what's the best."

January 18, 2007

Hal Hartley, Fay Grim

"Even now, when I contemplate a part three, the big question is whether the whole story will come back to Queens."

Gina Kim, Never Forever

"Vera Farmiga has this amazing, expressive face that is almost like a map of emotions on which you can travel -- you can explore her heart."

David Stenn, Girl 27

"I just didn't feel anyone could tell the story like I could, because I lived it. I was part of the story."

David Kaplan, Year of the Fish

"At first I thought I could set it in ancient China, but then the idea of setting it in Chinatown was even more exciting -- and certainly more doable."

Cherien Dabis, Make a Wish

"Are they going to ask questions? Or am I going to be standing there like, 'Please, somebody -- ask me a question'?"

Caran Hartsfield, King

"Expectations? I just want to see the film finished."

Alfredo de Villa, Adrift in Manhattan

"I noticed right away how this was a very special place because it didn't feel like the United States -- even though it was clearly a space in New York."

Alex Weil, One Rat Short

"It wasn't my goal, but I have a feeling that New Yorkers who see this film will actually feel differently about rats from now on."

January 16, 2007

Daniel Karslake, For the Bible Tells Me So

"People of faith are getting more and more activist and becoming more and more influential in government, and I had no interest in making a film that mocked that."

Sophie Barthes, Happiness

"I traveled a lot with the film, and it's funny how people can't deal with 'happiness' being an abstract thing -- putting it in a box was disturbing to some people."

Ian Olds, Bomb

"Maybe I'm obsessed with this used-up-places-on-the-edge-of-America in a certain way -- at least in my fiction stuff."

Dan Klores, Crazy Love

"I went to the premiere of Murderball and hugged the guys afterward, they did such a great job. I loved it. I don't worry about the competition."

Cynthia Wade, Freeheld

"It was such a rapidly closing window; if I hadn't have shown up at that moment at that Freeholder meeting, then we wouldn't have had a film."

Etienne Kallos, Doorman

"They gave me a thousand dollars, they gave me a video camera. I had two other people on my crew; the shooter was great, but had never shot anything before."

Aaron Augenblick, Golden Age

"I think it's something a lot of people think about; you're always wondering why Donald Duck doesn't wear pants but Mickey Mouse does."

January 15, 2007

Nanobah Becker, Conversion

"I just want to go and enjoy it and encourage people to see my film."

Martha Colburn, Destiny Manifesto and Meet Me In Wichita

"My two new films really have much more to do with my interest in making animation as a kind of fictional documentary."

Ray Tintori, Death to the Tinman

"I wasn't terribly interested in trying to recreate Oz from the 1930s movies; I just sort of wanted to deal with this world of evangelical mysticism."

Mitch McCabe, To Whom it May Concern

"Certainly there could be the reaction, 'Oh, that's so self-absorbed.' But that's the whole point of the film, you know?"

George Ratliff, Joshua

"I've submitted so many damn things to this festival and just never got in. I'm just grateful I finally get to go."

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