Ted Hope

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The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. There will be a quiz later. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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Anchorman Gang Fighting Diversity Issues

The best movie culture writing from around the internet-o-sphere. Just leave a tab open for us, will ya?

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As Todd Solondz explains, Dark Horse is a different kind of take on the Judd Apatow celebration of the Manchild. It’s a bit more aggressive, a lot more realistic, and complex in the way that fans have come to expect from the director of Welcome to the Dollhouse and Palindromes. Set beyond cheerful pop music, the film follows Jordan Gelber, looking a lot like Jeff Garlin, as he attempts to navigate what he views as a cruel, unfair world in the yellow hummer his parents bought for him. He discovers something like love with the depressed Miranda (a differently-named character reprised by Selma Blair from Storytelling), and he struggles (often hilariously) to understand a world shifting around him. Fortunately, Solondz took some time out to discuss his take on later-life childhood, how to respond to fans who laugh at child-rape, and how the indie filmmaking world has changed since the 1990s. Download Episode #135

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A few weeks ago, legendary indie producer Ted Hope (21 Grams, American Splendor, Martha Marcy May Marlene, and 50 other movies) spoke at the Athena Film Festival as part of their “From Script to Screen, Producing Films in Tough Times” panel. He was the token male amongst the solid producing presence of Lisa Cortes (Precious), Susan Cartsonis (No Reservations), Nekisa Cooper (Pariah), and Mary Jane Skalski (Win Win). With considerable experience working outside the studio world, they offered advice and encouragement, and Hope was nice enough to spread it to the world at large through his twitter feed. He was unavailable to clear up who should be credited for which piece of advice, but it’s a safe bet to assume that the panel agreed on these points at-large. Not only are they essential for aspiring filmmakers, they also provide a window into the world for movie fans. No matter what side of the screen you’re on, there’s something here for everyone.

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If you’ve ever wondered about the intimate hell of finding financing for an independent film, Edward Epstein has written a strongly worded, easy to understand primer on the subject that should be required reading for anyone even remotely interested in making their own film through traditional channels. As a (frustrating) standard, his essay is incredibly compelling, but even though his points are all correct, his ultimate conclusions about the possible negative fate of indie movies is slightly off. It’s not independent movies that are endangered. It’s the corporately-sponsored brand most have gotten used to that’s really in trouble.

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The real-life superhero movie is becoming a genre unto itself. With Special, Defendor, Kick-Ass and now James Gunn’s Super – the premise of regular men and women putting on costumes and fighting crime seems to be steadily growing. There hasn’t been a lot of information about the film, and without that information, it’s seemed a little generic. However, with the footage shown at Comic-Con this morning, James Gunn took a monkey wrench to that idea’s forehead and then shoved its grandmother out of her wheelchair. After all, if you’re going to make a film, why not make an “F’d up, low rent Watchmen“?

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