3 Simple Questions A Filmmaker Should Ask Before Making A Movie by Mark Landsman

Watch SCANDALOUS: The Untold Story of the National Enquirer online here!

 

Mark Landsman, Filmmaker of SCANDALOUS: The Untold Story of the National Enquirer: …And that’s not to say that I was born to make a story about a supermarket tabloid. I never read The Enquirer growing up, I never cared about supermarket tabloids. I thought it was a joke…

Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures

Film Courage: In listening to an interview with journalist John Pilger, someone in the audience yelled out at a Q& A “There’s this issue…” and went on and on “What are you doing about it?” Because he covers various issues in his films and he said [Paraphrasing] “Well why do I have to be the poster child of having to do something about it? We can all do something about it nowadays.” How do you feel about that because it used to be a select group that would be able to spotlight these stories and delve in. Now all of us, anyone with their own agenda or their a need to tell a story and a camera or a phone can do this. What are your thoughts?

Mark: I think ultimately what I’m getting from the question is it’s kind of a larger issue about the ability to get stories out there, right? I mean we all have Twitter, Twitter’s a storytelling device in X number of characters or less. All of these devices, all of these apps are newfangled stories and we’re all kind of technically our own little filmmaker.

SCANDALOUS: The Untold Story of the National Enquirer, a Magnolia Pictures release. Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures.

I don’t think that’s the same as making a film. There’s a responsibility in making a film if you’re making a film about something that’s true, if you’re making a film about something that’s about real life or if you’re even making a scripted film about something that’s historical fiction, you know you have a responsibility as the filmmakers to do justice to that story otherwise you’re going to slip into the propaganda universe and just be filling the world with more of that. I think filmmakers are bold and they’re on the frontier, they’re truth seekers. I think that’s true of even the best scripted filmmakers. I think back to BOYS DON’T CRY and what Kimberly Peirce did, that was an incredibly powerful eye-opening experience that the world hadn’t seen before and she did tremendous justice to…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).

 

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Now on Kickstarter! UNCONDITIONAL (or Berznosacjiuma In Latvian) is a short film that tells the story of an English man that moves to Latvia with his wife. Shortly after they have their first child, she passes away. He decides to stay in order to raise his child as close to how he and his wife intended. With this, come the struggles of single parenthood and living in a foreign country.