Pauline Kael was a farmer's daughter. A Californian. A one-time struggling single mother. Friend to many. Lover of the arts. Mistress of the movies. Pauline Kael was an artist in her own right and the most influential critic of the second half of the 20th century.
Pauline was a performer on the page. She felt and understood movies deeply, and had the gift to be able to express her personal experience of a movie imaginatively and incisively, while also having fun with it. She was unpretentious, instinctual, witty, persuasive, and completely American. She called motion pictures “movies,” and rejected academics. Often, her reviews were far more entertaining and insightful than the films she was covering.
What She Said is a sort of “character study,” and a way to give life to Pauline’s inimitable voice, pairing it with scenes from the movies she wrote about, and hearing from the filmmakers and actors who knew her, were inspired by her, or were at the pointed end of her pen. This movie is a portrait of the artist and her influence on filmmakers and films today.
Interviews have been shot with over 40 writers, film artists, and friends of Kael, including Quentin Tarantino, David O. Russell, Paul Schrader, Robert Towne, Greil Marcus, Francis Ford Coppola, David Edelstein, Molly Haskell and Alec Baldwin.
WHY WE WANT YOU TO PARTICIPATE
Pauline gave a lot of herself in what she wrote. This might be the perfect way to express your appreciation for that, and for the enjoyable (or frustrating!) hours you might have spent reading Pauline Kael's books. Pauline would have probably liked the idea of crowdfunding -- she wrote a lot about the challenge of independent filmmakers to make the films they wanted to, while working in a system that gave the most attention to studio-funded movies. So a successful Kickstarter campaign could -- who knows? -- ignite a resurgence of interest in her work. That wouldn't be too terrible, would it?
HOW WE INTEND TO USE THE FUNDS
We've shot the film and we already have interest from several European distributors and from PBS. They are waiting to see the finished film. So we need funds for post-production:
- Composer & Original Soundtrack
- Licensing Footage, Photographs, Recordings
- Film Graphics
- Color Correction
- Audio Mix
Rob Garver (producer - director - writer) has written, produced, and directed several short films that have been screened in local New York cinemas, and aired on cable television. Films include: “Comic Belief,” a documentary profile of cartoonist Dan Piraro; “The Man in the Yellow Cap,” and “Two Roads From Belfast, Maine,” a short narrative that has aired on the Classic Arts Showcase cable network.
Vincent Ellis (director of photography) is an award-winning Director of Photography with over twenty-five years of experience in film and television. He was the DP on the top-rated crime series “Forensic Files,” with over 300 episodes to his credit. He has also lensed documentaries and specials for Investigative Discovery and The Sci-Fi Channel, as well as numerous commercial and ad agency campaigns.
Rich Remsberg (archival researcher) is an Emmy Award-winning archival researcher/archival producer with more than 100 production credits. Remsberg is one of the country’s top researchers for documentary films, TV programs, and museum exhibits.
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Risks and challenges
We'll meet the challenges to come as we have met them so far -- head-on, with hard work, perseverance and maybe a little charm. :-) I didn't know any of the participants in the film when I started, and after 43 interviews, we've managed to film some of the best creative and critical minds around. But that's not due to me so much as Pauline, I think -- her name has opened doors.
And it's great to see how people are still fascinated, inspired, or upset by the mention of her name. The biggest challenge going into editing will be to make an honest film about Pauline. I want to make a movie that is as honest about who she was as she was about the movies she wrote about.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)