Posts Tagged ‘Lance Bangs’

The Lazarus Effect

Published May 24, 2010 by Graham

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Lance Bangs and Spike have joined forces with the (RED) foundation to make The Lazarus Effect, a fascinating and emotional portrait of the AIDS crisis’ human impact in sub-Saharan Africa. Tracking a number of HIV-positive individuals’ journeys back from the edge of death as they receive Antiretroviral treatment, The Lazarus Effect offers an optimistic look at the effects of these medicines and the impact of organizations and individuals fighting to make them accessible.

“(RED), Spike and I went into this film wanting the people in it to tell their own stories,” says Lance. “Connie, Bwalya, Concillia and Paul represent people who now have a chance at a future when only seven years ago, a diagnosis of HIV for them would have been a death sentence. This film is a hopeful one, yet still a reminder that almost 4,000 people still die every day from AIDS in Africa, because not all people who need access to the treatment have it.”

The Lazarus Effect will be broadcast tonight on HBO at 9pm EST, in UK on Channel 4 at 11pm GMT, and globally on YouTube starting at 9:30pm EST.

Thor Drake x Lance Bangs

Published March 29, 2010 by Graham

Daredevil Thor Drake, the man responsible for some of the craziest mini-bike stunts in Jackass Number Two, is living the dream. What kid doesn’t want to grow up to do crazy tricks, weld together trampolines and bounce down the street? Thanks Lance, for allowing us to vicariously live like Thor– if only for a few minutes.

NYC: Spike and Lance at Barnes & Noble Tomorrow

Published March 1, 2010 by Graham

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Where the Wild Things Are isn’t the only rad movie hitting shelves tomorrow! Spike and Lance Bangs’ fascinating documentary delving deep into the personal world of Maurice Sendak, Tell Them Anything You Want, is getting a deluxe DVD release, thanks to those loving cinephiles at Oscilloscope Laboratories. The handsomely packaged disc is loaded with bonus features including an exclusive essay by Sendak’s good friend, Pulitzer-winner Tony Kushner, and a Sendakian birthday tribute with Meryl Streep, James Gandolfini and Catherine Keener.

To celebrate the release, the dynamic directorial duo are making an in-store appearance at Barnes & Nobles’ Union Square store for a conversation with McSweeney’s contributor and ineffable witticist John Hodgman.

The discussion will go down Tuesday, March 2nd at 7:00 PM. After the Q&A, Spike and Lance will sign copies of Tell Them Anything You Want and John Hodgman will sign copies of his own books. Barnes & Noble Union Square is located at 33 East 17th Street.

Where the Wild Things Are Video Giveaway!

Published February 26, 2010 by Graham

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The epic wait is finally over! Where the Wild Things Are is coming to Blu-Ray and DVD this Tuesday, March 2nd. The special features include a veritable bounty of videos from Spike and Lance Bangs revealing the exciting chaos of production from every angle, including all the pranks, mutinies and vampire attacks. Most excitingly, the Blu-Ray release includes a brilliant brand new 23-minute adaptation of Maurice Sendak’s Higglety Pigglety Pop!, directed by dream team Chris Lavis and Maciek Szczerbowski of Madame Tutli-Putli fame and starring the voices of Meryl Streep and Forrest Whitaker.

It’s been a wild ride on this humble blog. The movie Where the Wild Things Are started as a fleeting thought in Spike’s mind and went through years of preparation, imagination, re-imagination, shooting and editing before We Love You So sprouted up last spring, just when the film was blossoming from the quiet final stages of post-production to a roaring sea of buzz and promotion, followed by fan-fueled frenzy and trips abroad to foreign shores. Finally Where the Wild Things Are is a disc that you can hold in your hands and watch until your eyes fall out of your heads.

You, the dedicated readers of this blog, have shared the journey with us, and we want to express our appreciation by giving away copies of Where the Wild Things Are on DVD and Blu-Ray! All you have to do is write us an e-mail at email hidden; JavaScript is required telling us what you’ve loved most of all the lovely things on We Love You So. The lucky winners will be chosen at random on Monday!

Tell Them Anything You Want at IFC

Published February 23, 2010 by Molly

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Tell Them Anything You Want, the amazing-amazing documentary about Maurice Sendak by Spike and Lance Bangs, is playing at New York’s IFC Center this Wednesday at 8PM, followed by a Q&A with the two directors. If you missed it on the small-screen, now’s your chance to catch the film and lob a question or two at Lance and Spike!

All Tomorrow’s Parties on DVD

Published December 8, 2009 by Graham

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Remember summer camp? Remember how fun that was? Now imagine going back to camp as an adult, but instead of making shoddy arts and crafts, you get to watch a few dozen mind-blowing musical performances. That’s what All Tomorrow’s Parties is– a series of festivals often thrown at off-season summer camps in the British countryside, featuring some of the best musical talents in the world.

Just peruse Wikipedia’s list of lineups from the many events bearing the ATP moniker– it’s a veritable who’s who of rad artists in the 2000s, frequently featuring now-beloved bands before they’ve broken. Instead of safely selecting big name musicians though a committee of concert promoters, All Tomorrow’s Parties will invite artists like Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Thurston Moore, and Sleater-Kinney to curate their festivals. The result is an air of playful excitement that is impossible to replicate, at a festival with authentic enthusiasm for the artists it’s promoting.

Jonathan Caouette, the filmmaker who breathed new life into the documentary medium with 2003’s Tarnation, is behind All Tomorrow’s Parties, a documentary about the concerts that was just released on DVD. Using his razor-sharp editing skills, Caouette incorporates footage shot by fans, promoters, and the musicians themselves into a patchwork of pure experience that’s as exhilarating as it is intimate. Check out the trailer below:

Update: The awesomely prolific Lance Bangs writes in: young-lance

Just saw your write up, I shot for that film, that’s my young passport photo on the bottom of the cover! I assumed they were just going to use those in some credits section, didn’t know they were going to design such a cool cover out of them….

Isn’t he the spitting image of a young Paul McCartney? We love you, Lance!

What’s Your Favorite (Children’s) Scary Movie?

Published October 30, 2009 by Graham

Where do you draw the line between what’s an appropriate horror film for children and what’s “too scary”? Blanket statements can’t be taken seriously– every kid is different, after all. Maybe Maurice Sendak hit it on the head in the titular laissez-faire sentiment of Spike and Lance’s documentary: “You can tell them anything you want.” People are free to raise their kids however they see fit– and sheltering children from the macabre, gory, violent side of cinema is certainly an acceptable interpretation of parental protection. But let’s be real: your kids will probably jump at a chance to revel in an R-rated scarefest at their next sleepover. Wouldn’t you?

There are at least a handful of great horror films specifically geared towards a more family-friendly audience. The interdimensional mind trip of Disney’s Watcher in the Woods remains a classic of the genre. Lady in White is a less famous though equally bizarre kiddie fright flick that attempts to emulate Spielbergian grandiosity, sporting stunning visuals and a meandering plot that centers around one boy’s traumatic night locked inside a coat closet. Paperhouse is an atmospheric, psychological tale of terror staged within the tortured dreams of a highly imaginative British girl.

Then there are more mature horror films about kid heroes battling a world of terrifying adults, like The People Under the Stairs, Pan’s Labyrinth and Phantasm. Though the young actors starring in these movies would be barred from seeing them by the MPAA, they still operate within a world of childlike wonder. Yes, somehow these are still children’s horror films. Which horror movies for or about kids do you love?

Shawn Records: Owner of This World

Published October 29, 2009 by Graham

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Rad photographers were in no short supply behind the scenes of Where the Wild Things Are, but only one of them had the unique privilege of approaching the experience as both a wide-eyed documentarian and the father of the film’s nine-year-old star. Shawn Records is an artist who brilliance lies in capturing near-weightless moments of ephemeral beauty, casually illuminating banal absurdities, and unveiling the clandestine grace of seemingly ordinary juxtapositions. His gentle approach is especially refreshing when pitted against the coarse cacophony of an epic film production.

Spike summed up Shawn’s attitude perfectly– “Patient and observed”– when we posted a small set of Shawn’s photos in July. The amazing images from that post are included alongside dozens more from the set of Where the Wild Things Are in his brand new book, Owner of This World. Go order yourself a copy from inspiringly autonomous DIY publishing house Publication Studio, and then read on for an enlightening interview with Shawn Records!

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Using a list of adjectives, how would you describe the experience of working on Where The Wild Things Are?
Confusing, chaotic, humbling, fun, educational, inspirational, exhausting…

Were you a fan of the book growing up?
Not only was I a fan of the book, but when Max was born, we still had a copy of the book from my childhood, my own name scribbled in orange crayon inside. After Max started working on the film and we had that copy of the book out a lot, Sam, my younger son, ripped it apart and added some additional scribbles to it. It was perfect. We ended up using some of those pages to create a birthday scrapbook for Maurice Sendak with some photos of what he was missing on set.

Read the rest of this entry »

The Early Work of Max Records

Published October 20, 2009 by Graham

Max Records cut his acting teeth on a pair of alt-rock music videos. After dipping his toes in the water with the warm and fuzzy sing along of Cake’s “Guitar Man,” (directed by the lovely Cat Solen), Max’s second role, in a Death Cab for Cutie video, strongly foreshadowed the young thespian’s capability to take on meditative, emotionally challenging roles with a natural grace. Shot in a tin shed on a shoestring budget, Max manages to convey a sense of loneliness and loss in this wordless performance that echoes throughout the atmosphere of the entire video.

Director Aaron Stewart-Anh contributes to Giant Robot and has helmed videos for bands like The Decemberists, The Album Leaf, and Asobi Seksu. He shot the somber, Silent Running-esque “Stable Song” for Directions, an ambitious project in which the filmmaker enlisted 11 directors to create long-form videos based around each track on Death Cab for Cutie’s 2005 album, Plans. Contradicting the conventions of the music video medium, Stewart-Anh’s project permitted the directors an unusual amount of creative freedom—the songs became scores for a series of short stories and visual experiments, rather than products being marketed by throw-away visuals. Originally released in weekly installments through the band’s website, Directions was almost a prelude to the plethora of indie rock experiments in video that would soon be fostered by the explosion of YouTube.

Lance Bangs, who contributed to Directions in the form of a bizarre and hilarious first-person live concert video, asked Stewart-Anh if he knew any kids capable of playing Max, and the rest is history.

THE VAMPIRE ATTACK – Exclusive WTWTA Short Film

Published October 7, 2009 by Dallas