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Live podcast with Rian Johnson

April 26, 2009
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From KC Filmfest


After the screening of  The Brothers Bloom, audience members who stuck around after the show got a rare treat. Jeff Goldsmith of Creative Screenwriting Magazine recorded a live podcast with director Rian Johnson.  

A few weeks ago I was listening to a Filmspotting podcast and I heard a great story. Chris White is a drama coach at a  High School in South Carolina.  This year for the spring play, he decided he wanted to adapt the movie Brick into a play.  He contacted the movie’s writer and director,  Rian Johnson via Rian’s personal website.  Not only did Rian give his enthusiastic blessing to adapt the material, he also surprised the cast by

flying in for the final performance and hung out with them for the weekend.  How cool is that?

I sort of filed the story away until I was about 10 minutes into the Q & A/podcast.  I was thinking about how refreshing Rian was to watch. He was gracious, humble,  and funny. Then I remembered that story about Brick, and my initial observations were reinforced.  So often you hear stories about what jerks directors are, Rian couldn’t have been a nicer guy.

Moderated by an excellent Jeff Goldsmith (who truly made running the show look effortless) Johnson shared stories about his creative techniques, “lost” scenes, casting angst, and easter eggs placed in the film for fans of his previous film Brick.  Mr. Goldsmith plans to coincide the release of the podcast with the wide release of The Brothers Bloom toward the end of May.  I will post a link when it becomes available for download here on the site.

Hearing the actual director discuss the specifics of  a film’s development right after you have seen it was fascinating.  Rian discussed humble beginnings working on Bear in the Big Blue House and creating promos for Disney.

He also discussed the difficulties of writing a “con” film, because the audience is predisposed to assuming someone is going to get screwed, thus they are more reluctant to become emotionally invested in the characters.  (From personal experience, I can attest that I go into a con film and view it much differently than I would a film of  a different genre, but I’ve never thought about it before).

Rian shared some funny personal anecdotes and stories that he had incorporated into the movie and revealed that Bang Bang’s character had been written with a Groucho-Marx like persona in mind (the character only spoke two words throughout the whole film, but has a high impact comedically).  The funniest part was when he revealed that Adrien Brody and  Mark Ruffalo were flabbergasted when a real live camel pulls off a killer scene in the first take, earning a hypothetical SAG membership immediately.

If you are a movie fan, aspiring screenwriter, or curious about Rian Johnson, don’t miss the movie or podcast next month.

posted 7:26 am

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One Response to “ Live podcast with Rian Johnson ”

  1. Joe Carson on November 10, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    Wow, great blog. I love reading blogs about comdey. The world needs more laughter these days. Who is your favorite comedian? I would have a hard time choosing between Bill Murray. I don’t have time to read it all right now, I found this site when looking for something else on Yahoo, but I’ve bookmarked your homepage and will check back soon to see the latest posts. Please bookmark my comedy blog at http://www.DomainB.org and let me know what you think of it. Have a fun week!

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