Todd Haynes is one of the most interesting personalities of the current independent cinema scene. Born 1961 in Los Angeles, the screenwriter and director is considered to be the pioneer of the 1990s coined “New Queer Cinema”. Haynes continually succeeds in undermining traditional narrative structures with his uncompromising and often sublimely erotic films. His directorial debut, the science fiction drama POISON, garnered the main award at Sundance in 1991. This master of semiotics has since picked up more than 46 international awards, including the Special Jury Prize at Cannes for his glam rock homage VELVET GOLDMINE (1998), the Special Jury Prize at the Mostra in Venice for his Bob Dylan biopic I’M NOT THERE (2007), and an Academy Award nomination for FAR FROM HEAVEN (2002).
L.A. based producer Donald De Line scored his first major hit with the 2003 heist thriller THE ITALIAN JOB. De Line’s continued success includes Ridley Scott’s BODY OF LIES and John Hamburg’s I LOVE YOU MAN. In addition to his producing career, De Line has held positions as a studio executive, serving as President and Vice Chairman of Paramount Pictures, and President of Touchstone Pictures. Among the films under his aegis were PRETTY WOMAN, Wes Anderson’s RUSHMORE, Tim Burton’s ED WOOD, and the blockbuster ARMAGEDDON. De Line believes in hard work and the power of keeping oneself well- informed about everything going on in film business. His career proves this philosophy is a key to success.
Harrison Ford ist einer der erfolgreichsten Schauspieler Hollywoods. Seine Karriere startete er in der „New Hollywood“-Ära Ende der 1960er Jahre mit kleineren Rollen in Filmen von George Lucas oder Francis Ford Coppola, bevor er mit der Rolle des Han Solo in George Lucas’ STAR WARS (1977), dem ersten Blockbuster der Filmgeschichte, auf einen Schlag weltberühmt wurde. Mit seiner Darstellung des Archäologen und Abenteurers Indiana Jones in RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK (1981) und den Nachfolgefilmen der Franchise machte sich Harrison Ford zur Ikone einer ganzen Kino-Generation. An der ZFF MASTERS berichtet Harrison Ford von seinen Erfahrungen als Schauspieler.
Born in Dublin and educated at Trinity College, David Flynn began his film career working as a production assistant on BRAVEHEART (1995). He was a founding partner in the LA-based management/production company, Chaos Management, producing SERAPHIM FALLS (2006), starring Pierce Brosnan and Liam Neeson. Flynn’s other credit’s as producer include Rodrigo Cortés’ BURIED (2010) starring Ryan Reynolds and the critically acclaimed documentary RESTREPO (2010), which won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. Flynn currently works as an agent representing filmmakers, writers and producers, and he currently represents the Swedish director Daniel Espinosa, director of SAFE HOUSE (2012), who will also be appearing at the festival. In the ZURICH MASTER CLASS we want to get an insight into Flynn‘s work as an agent. To what extent does he foster the careers of directors and other filmmakers? How can agents assist and support directors’ careers?
Born and raised in Queens, New York, Benh Zeitlin began his career as a filmmaker at the tender age of 6 when he and a friend made their own Batman film. He continued making films growing up before attending Wesleyan University, where he majored in film. After graduating, he helped start the Court 13 independent filmmaking collective and moved to New Orleans where he made short film, such as GLORY AT SEA (2008), following Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of the city. His debut film, BEASTS OF A SOUTHERN WILD (2012), co-written with Lucy Alibar, was critically praised and awarded with the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, the Camera d’Or and the International Critics’ prize at Cannes. We will focus our discussion on Zeitlin’s debut. What inspires the 29 year old filmmaker? What drove him to create this particular film, narrated by a little girl? We will ask him about his artistic vision; the symbolism, the archaic imagery and the music he chose to convey the spirit of freedom in the film.
Jerry Weintraub is one of the last Hollywood legends, although his career actually began in music. As one of the biggest concert promoters of the 70s, Weintraub worked with such luminaries as Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and Bob Dylan. Conveniently – given his musical upbringing – Jerry’s first hit as a film producer was with 1975’s country and gospel music themed, NASHVILLE, directed by Robert Altman. With his next film as producer, DINER (1982), Weintraub helped launch the careers of a new generation of acting talent, including Mickey Rourke, Kevin Bacon and Ellen Barkin. Some of Weintraub’s most commercially successful films include the original version of THE KARATE KID (1984) and the OCEAN’S trilogy (2001/2004/2007), directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring George Clooney, Matt Damon and Brad Pitt. His future projects include a film about the life of notoriously flamboyant pianist Liberace, starring Michael Douglas and Matt Damon and a planned Hugh Hefner biopic, written by Peter Morgan (Frost/Nixon, The Last King of Scotland.)
Born in France and raised in the United States, Frank Darabont became involved in filmmaking at the age of 20, making his feature length directorial debut withTV movie, BURIED ALIVE (1990).
Darabont is arguably best known as director of prison drama THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION (1994), starring Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman, and based on a short story by Stephen King. The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards including Best Film and for Darabont’s Adapted Screenplay.
Darabont’s relationship with King’s work continued with adaptations of his novel THE GREEN MILE (1999), which he scripted, directed and produced, and his novella THE MIST (2007).
He was also the executive producer of the first series of zombie drama series THE WALKING DEAD (2010), for which he directed the pilot episode, and L.A. NOIR (2013), a new series for TNT.
Frank Darabont will talk about his work as an author, director and producer; the topics interest him and how he chooses his projects. We want to know what fascinates him about writing, about cinema, TV and films in general.