October 11, 2010

PODCAST: Roger and Julie Corman

Roger and Julie Corman at Fantastic Fest '10

Even if you've never touched a movie camera, you probably have an idea just how idealistic and laborious a task it is to make an independent film today, let alone trying to get it distributed, exhibited or pretty much seen by anyone who didn't hold a boom or finance the damn thing. So it's baffling why, in an economy staying cozy in its slump, more indie hopefuls aren't modeling their methods after those of low-budget filmmaking titan Roger Corman.

Sometimes collaborating with his wife Julie (the former Chair of NYU's Graduate Film Department), Corman has milked exploitation thrills in just about every genre imaginable. He helped launch the early careers of Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, John Sayles, Peter Bogdanovich, Robert Towne, Jonathan Demme, Joe Dante, Robert De Niro and countless more. A sample of his discipline: In 1965, he made Monte Hellman stretch his budget for one western (The Shooting) to afford another, shot one week later in the same Utah desert. That second, equally groovy oater was Ride in the Whirlwind, co-written by and starring Jack Nicholson, another graduate of the Corman Film School. There's a reason the Academy gave this 84-year-old gentleman an honorary Oscar earlier this year.

Last month in Austin, Fantastic Fest also honored Roger and Julie Corman with a Lifetime Achievement Award, supplemented by screenings of his 1963 directorial landmark X: The Man With X-Ray Eyes, and the couple's newly produced SyFy exclusive movie Sharktopus:

Eric Roberts plays a research scientist who, with his talented daughter (Sara Malakul Lane), develops a secret military weapon—a hybrid shark/octopus that can be controlled by electrical implants. But when the controls break down, the monster goes on a killing rampage at the resort beaches of Mexico.

At the Highball, the Cormans spoke with me about Sharktopus' point of view, how X: The Man With the X-Ray Eyes looks (har, har) many decades later, competing with major studio distributors in the post-Internet Age, and the late Dennis Hopper—another raw young talent guided by Mr. Corman once upon a time.

To listen to the podcast, click here. (13:40)

Podcast Music
INTRO: Bauhaus: "The Man With the X-Ray Eyes"
OUTRO: The Cure: "I'm a Cult Hero"

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Posted by ahillis at October 11, 2010 7:00 AM


Thanks for the two podcasts; FWIW, this one didn't show up on itunes. Is there a reason for that?

Posted by: Hrebml at October 23, 2010 2:55 PM

Apologies, was just a glitch on our part. That podcast should appear on the iTunes feed shortly tonight. Thanks and thanks for listening!
CP of GC

Posted by: Craig P at October 23, 2010 5:32 PM
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