We thought it would be a good idea to help you get to know some of our fantastic filmmakers. So, borrowing an idea from LA Weekly’s Karina Longworth (the Bernard Pivot to our James Lipton), we submitted four questions to each filmmaker about and themselves and their films.
One of our up-and-coming Oklahoma filmmakers this year is Adam Beatty, whose debut short The Rounder Comes to Town screens in the Okie Shorts 2 program Saturday, June 12th at 5:30pm.
1. Tell us about your movie. Give us the reductive, 25-word or less, “It’s like [pop culture reference a] meets [pop culture reference b]!” pitch, then explain what the quick and dirty sell leaves out.
It’s like Django meets The Hustler. I don’t feel like that’s accurate, but it’s all I can think of.
The Rounder Comes to Town is an Okie Gothic film based on a traditional song dating back to 1720. Throughout time the music has changed in the hands of it’s performer, while the story remained largely the same. A lone drifter with no history meets the young and beautiful wife of the most powerful man in town. With a dangerous path laid out before each of them, our characters hurtle towards their destinies with no regard for the inevitable outcome. The Rounder Comes to Town is a story of deception, lust and greed…A tale as old as time itself.
2. Are you a full-time filmmaker? If not, tell us how you get by while raising money for your films.
No, I am not a full-time filmmaker. I’ve done lots of stuff while I made this film. I worked as a bank teller, substitute teacher, ladies’ shoe salesman, casino huckster. I am about to start working at Casady School in the Middle School Division and hopefully by next year I’ll be teaching 6th grade Social Studies. That’s what I really wanna do is teach kids, but I’d REALLY like someone to give me money to make movies full-time…any takers out there?
3. Have you been to deadCENTER before? What’s something you look forward to discovering (or re-living) at the festival and/or in Oklahoma City?
I love the opening night screening in the street. Also, just getting to see everyone and talk about movies. It’s like Los Angeles, but instead of stuck-up a-holes you get to talk to Okies. I love the local filmmaking community and it’s one of the few times we all converge and get to shoot the breeze. I also like just walking in downtown OKC from one screening to the next, it’s the only time of the year I get to do that.
4. Every filmmaker has influences and cinematic heroes. Name one of yours, and while you’re at it, tell us one film (or scene) in history that you wish you had directed.
Oh God, I’m totally gonna sound like pretentious film dude, but I don’t care. Stanley Kubrick is my favorite filmmaker, watching and studying his movies taught me A LOT about storytelling and filmmaking. I can watch his movies anytime and be mesmerized. As far as what film or scene in history do I wish I had directed, that’s tough. I would have loved to direct Dirty Mary, Crazy Larry because it was basically one giant car chase and also because it had Peter Fonda, Susan George, Adam Roarke and Vic Morrow. They were all at the top of their game and it just has an electricity to it that is palpable. It’s just a fun-as-hell movie and I love it. It’s not the best movie ever made, but I really enjoy it and would’ve loved to have been on set everyday.