“I Like the Widening Circles One Can Consult During an Edit”: Editor David Charap on The Reason I Jump

Based off of the book written by 13-year-old Naoki Higashida, Jerry Rothwell’s The Reason I Jump aims to translate the experiences of non-verbal autistic people in a way that is honest and multifaceted. Choosing not to simply concede to the opinions of parents and specialists, the documentary aims to break the assumption that divergent ways of experiencing the world are not abnormal, and communication can transcend language and actions. Editor David Charap speaks to the unique experience of having a nonverbal group of individuals explain the intricacies of their everyday lives to an audience through imagery and imagination.  Filmmaker: How […]

“A Fun Balancing Act”: DP Ruben Woodin Dechamps in The Reason I Jump

Jerry Rothwell’s The Reason I Jump universalizes the experiences nonverbal autistic youth, who are often denied the opportunity to uniquely express their feelings, emotions and dreams without misunderstanding and translation. Based off the book of the same name written by a 13-year-old named Naoki Higashida, the film follows the lives of several nonverbal autistic youths scattered all over the world, showcasing their distinct personalities while also combating stigma and assumptions about their realities. DP Ruben Woodin Dechamps  Filmmaker: How and why did you wind up being the cinematographer of your film? What were the factors and attributes that led to […]

“You Can Bend Time and Space Within the Film to Create New Meanings”: Editor Aacharee Ungsriwong on The Mountains Are a Dream That Call to Me

Cedric Cheung-Lau’s The Mountains Are a Dream That Call to Me characterizes landscape in a way that almost seeks to anthropomorphize it. Its central characters, Tukten, a young Nepali man on his way to Dubai and Hannah, an elderly Australian woman traveling on her own, cross paths while traveling in opposite directions on the Annapurna mountains. Their relationship is fleeting, but the Nepali mountain range holds a heightened command of the narrative. Taking great influence in part from the dreamscape style of Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Editor Aacharee Ungsriwong speaks about the creative nuances of the film.  Filmmaker: How and why did […]

“I Much Prefer a Camera That Sees Than One That Is Constantly Seen”: DP Nicolás Wong Díaz on La Llorona

In the widely popular Latin American folk tale of La Llorona (The Weeping Woman), a mother is cursed to tread the banks of a river for eternity after she drowns her three children in the hopes of making her a more worthy bride to a rich man. The condemnation of greed and loss of innocent life receives an apt adaptation in Jayro Bustamante’s La Llorona, which focuses on the devastating history of indigenous Mayan genocide in Mexico. When a senile general is set to be tried for his war crimes against the indigenous population, a crowd of angry townspeople gather […]

“We Wanted the Film to Feel Lived in, Gritty, Real”: Directors/Cinematographers Bill and Turner Ross on Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets

In The Ross Brothers’ Bloody Nose, Empty Pockets, a dive bar on the outskirts of Las Vegas, The Roaring 20s, is on its last leg. Its long-time patrons are devastated by the prospect of losing the watering hole that has been a sort of refuge for them over the years—they could hide from their disappointments, inadequacies and reality under the dim lights. Bill and Turner Ross briefly describe what went into shooting the documentary. Filmmaker: How and why did you wind up being the cinematographer of your film? What were the factors and attributes that led to your being hired […]

“My Process is Totally Based Around Story and Emotion”: Editor Alex O’Flinn on Wander Darkly

In Tara Miele’s Wander Darkly, the narrative is comprised of a string of memories as Adrienne (Sienna Miller) attempts to dissect the events that led up to a tragic accident. As a result, her relationship with Matteo (Diego Luna) comes under scrutiny and must be reevaluated. The fate of her daughter also remains uncertain, making the memories explored all the more painful. Editor Alex O’Flinn explains how the editing process shaped the film’s exploration of memory.  Filmmaker: In terms of advancing your film from its earliest assembly to your final cut, what were goals as an editor? What elements of […]

“You Always Hope the Film Surprises You When You’re Done”: Editor David Teague on Spaceship Earth

In 1991, a Texas oil tycoon funded an experimental project meant to test the limits of America’s technology when it came to space exploration (and colonization). Known as Biosphere 2, the project consisted of sealing eight people in an airtight terrarium in the Arizona desert meant to perfectly replicate the Earth’s natural atmosphere. Many of the findings of this project have been long destroyed, but documentarian Matt Wolf used a medley of archival footage and interviews with surviving Biospherians in order to capture the daily realities of those enclosed in Biosphere 2. Editor David Teague speaks to Filmmaker about the […]

“It Was About Being Very Open and Standing Back”: DP Jake Magee on The Mountains Are a Dream That Call to Me

A chance encounter between two travelers trekking along a path on the Annapurna mountains in Nepal propels the story in Cedric Cheung-Lau’s debut feature, The Mountains Are a Dream That Call to Me. Tukten, a young man from Nepal, is en route to Dubai in the hopes of finding opportunity when he meets Hannah, an older Australian woman traveling solo. As important as the lead characters are the Annapurna mountains themselves, having a sentience and knowledge of their own. DP Jake Magee speaks about the character of landscapes, the frustration of relying on nature and the brilliance of editors.  Filmmaker: […]