independent-films

“We all know each other but haven’t necessarily shared the screen together. It looked like it was going to be a masculine kind of act-off. And ironically, with the exception of Ben Mendelsohn, I think Jacki Weaver actually slipped through the back door and took the top honours.”

“Jacki’s everybody’s Mum. She’s one of those personalities. But you’ve got to earn her respect as well.’‘ 

–  Joel Edgerton commending Jacki Weaver for holding her own on the testosterone-heavy set of "Animal Kingdom”

“Work is always the same. The difference stems from the fact that usually much more money is involved in American productions. They have bigger budgets, and hence, longer schedules where everything is done in a slower pace. In Australia, you’re working with low budgets, and everything moves quickly, and I enjoy that.”

“I find that when there’s more money involved, people solve problems with money rather than using their brain. That’s the major difference. When there’s a problem in a low-budget movie, people have to think their way out of it, but in American movies, someone just writes a cheque.”

–  Joel Edgerton on the difference between working on American films and Australian films; photographed with Blue-Tongue Films colleagues David Michod and Spencer Susser

“I feel like I’m in a position where I’m really mature and I’ve got a good perspective on that. I don’t take anything for granted and don’t expect that much.”

“Next year, I could sit around and just wait for jobs to come along, so I think, ‘Fuck it, why don’t I write something that I really want to do and spend all my spare time trying to get that project up?‘  Maybe then I’ll have no reason to complain about anything.’' 

–  Joel Edgerton on creating jobs for himself by writing and/or directing his own films such as “The Square,” “Felony,” and “The Gift”

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Euzhan Palcy: Trailblazing black female filmmaker

After French West Indian filmmaker Euzhan Palcy’s debut film, Sugar Cane Alley, earned her France’s distinguished César Award for best first work in 1984, an impressed Robert Redford personally invited her to attend the 1985 Sundance Institute Filmmakers Lab (depicted in the above photos). There she workshopped her adaptation of the novel A Dry White Season, about South Africa’s then still-prevalent apartheid. A few years later MGM would produce the movie, making Palcy the first black female director to helm a major Hollywood studio title. Her dedication to an unrelentingly accurate portrayal of apartheid in the film drew Marlon Brando out of his self-imposed, years-long retirement to accept a role that earned him an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor, and made Palcy the first black director—male or female—to direct an Oscar-nominated performance.

Photos: © 1985 Roger Christiansen | Courtesy of the Sundance Institute Archives

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Basic Camera Angles

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Moonlight (2016)

Directed by Barry Jenkins

Cinematography by James Laxton