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Monday, July 21, 2003  

Hollywood Rebel
Ever since Desperado I've been a big fan of filmmaker Robert Rodriguez. He makes films that are fun and irreverent. He breaks all the right rules. He, like so many of the filmmakers I look upto, started making 8mm movies when he was a kid in Austin, Texas. He eventually scraped some money together and shot a Spanish-language action movie, "El Mariachi," in Mexico. His goal was to get a straight-to-video deal with a Spanish language B movie distributor. Instead the film spread through Hollywood like SARS and soon every major studio wanted a piece. Rodriguez got an agent and a phat 3 pic deal. All this is told with a lot of humor in his autobio, "Rebel Without a Crew," which is a fantastic read.

Eight years after breaking into Hollywood Rodriguez got to make the film he had always wanted to make. 2001's "Spy Kids" was a bizarre hallucination of a film, but it caught on in a big way and was the birth of a highly successful franchise. Now he has done the impossible. He has made the sequel (the second sequel actually) for LESS money than the original. And he made it in 3D. And it was all shot on digital. You see Rodriguez is a digital-filmmaking evangelist. He thinks celluloid is dead, and Hollywood is just dragging its corpse around. I'm not sure that I entirely agree, but I DO believe in the power of digital, and hope to use the DV revolution to my advantage in the coming years.

posted by JMV | 7/21/2003 11:20:00 AM
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