Vincent Gallo is one of those working artists who critics and audiences often find polarizing. What’s that mean? I guess it means that he’s always doing crazy shit and some people buy into it and some people get annoyed by it. The hype around the filmmaker seemed to hit its crescendo with his 2003 film The Brown Bunny, which consisted mostly of lengthy, boring scenes of Gallo driving, capped off with a graphic depiction of him receiving a blowjob from Chloe Sevigny. The film famously endured mass walkouts at Cannes and in the wake of that screening Gallo exchanged heated words about cancer and death with film critic Roger Ebert.
Recently Gallo did an interview with the Danish Film Institute and it seems like he’s back to his polarizing ways. Or, more accurately, he’s doing more crazy crap and some people will applaud him while some people will scorn him. Last year Gallo directed a film named Promises in the Water about a Dr. Kevorkian-esque assisted murderer (Gallo) who strikes up a romance with a terminally ill woman (Delfine Bafort) that screened at Venice and TIFF. Right about now he should probably be talking to media outlets about when it will be available for limited release, but instead he is telling the DFI that he refuses to release it, or any other film that he makes from now on.
Gallo says that he only screened Promises in the Water at festivals last year due to an agreement he had with Bafort and that, “I do not want my new works to be generated in a market or audience of any kind. I have just finished a new film and has (sic) not made ??similar agreements with anyone. So this film is allowed to rest in peace, and stored without being exposed to the dark energies from the public.” So there you have it, not only are you not going to be able to see Promises in the Water, but also Gallo has already made another film that you’re not going to be able to see either. And it’s because of your dark energies. Shame on you.
So where do you come down on Gallo’s recent proclamations? Is he a principled, eccentric artist or just a self-hyping bullshit artist? Is it his prerogative to keep his films to himself if he doesn’t want to share them, or is he an attention whore for making movies and then telling the media that they exist and nobody can watch them? Will Promises in the Water continue to languish, unreleased, or is this all an attempt to build hype for it so that it makes more money? [via The Playlist]