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The MovieMaker Sundance Survey 2017: The Scoop on 19 Films Playing Park City at the 33rd Festival

The MovieMaker Sundance Survey 2017: The Scoop on 19 Films Playing Park City at the 33rd Festival


Ingrid Goes West (U.S. Dramatic Competition)

Who: Matt Spicer, director and co-writer

Logline: A mentally unstable young woman becomes obsessed with a social media “influencer” and moves to L.A. to try and befriend her in real life.

The length of the shoot was: five weeks.

Our crew size was: about 50 people.

Our camera, lenses and lighting package were: Alexa Mini, Panavision C-Series anamorphic lenses.

The first spark of an idea for this movie came when: I was at lunch with my co-writer Dave. We were talking about our mutual obsession with Instagram and how great it is but also how it allows us to indulge our own worst instincts.

Matt Spicer

My favorite scene (or shot) in the film is: the shot of Aubrey Plaza licking O’Shea’s face.

An audience watching my film probably won’t know that: Aubrey’s body is inhabited by a 1,000-year-old demon and I promised her my eternal soul in order to direct this film.

An influence or reference on this film was: The Talented Mr. Ripley.

The most interesting, weirdest or most difficult location we shot at was: an abandoned house somewhere in Hollywood that was supposed to double as the interior for Ingrid’s Joshua Tree house. On the day of the shoot, we discovered that someone had broken in the night before and used the toilet on set, which wasn’t actually connected to any plumbing. We had to call in a cleaning crew and lost three hours of shooting time. The whole place smelled like bleach afterwards, so we all had to wear protective masks. In emoji terms, it will forever be known as the ??.

The greatest flash of inspiration or brilliance we had making this film was: casting O’Shea as Dan Pinto.

The biggest lesson I learned making this movie was: you have to cast the crew as well, not just the actors.

A darling I had to kill along the way was: an improvised scene between Aubrey and Lizzie doing coke in the bathroom of Pappy and Harriet’s with a bunch of random locals from Joshua Tree. It was really funny but ultimately unnecessary, so we had to let it go.

I need to give a special shout-out to: my girlfriend, Sarah, for being the best audience.

When I heard we got into Sundance I: called my mom.

I’m most excited about seeing the film City of Ghosts this year.

My favorite moviemaker of all time is: Stanley Kubrick.

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    Martin M

    January 19, 2017 at 2:50 pm

    After reading a couple articles in this new issue, I am becoming convinced I should allocate some of my budget for VFX! I am writing and directing a film about a cyber relationship between a man and a woman across two different galaxies, though one is unsure which lives on Earth, and I’m struggling with transitional scenes across the Milky Way.

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