Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Steve Carell Redefined His Career By Surprising Everyone in 'Foxcatcher' Steve Carell Redefined His Career By Surprising Everyone in 'Foxcatcher' Watch: Ellar Coltrane on the 'Brutal' Experience of Watching 'Boyhood' After Living It Watch: Ellar Coltrane on the 'Brutal' Experience of Watching 'Boyhood' After Living It Mortem Tyldum Explains Why Alan Turing Was the Right Subject For His First English-Language Film Mortem Tyldum Explains Why Alan Turing Was the Right Subject For His First English-Language Film Why Richard Linklater’s ‘Boyhood’ is a Great, Unexpected Awards Season Frontrunner Why Richard Linklater’s ‘Boyhood’ is a Great, Unexpected Awards Season Frontrunner Watch: Patricia Arquette on Stripping Away Ego to Get to the Heart of 'Boyhood' 
Watch: Patricia Arquette on Stripping Away Ego to Get to the Heart of 'Boyhood' 'Whiplash' Breakout Miles Teller Has Officially Arrived 'Whiplash' Breakout Miles Teller Has Officially Arrived Michael Keaton Dug Deep to Deliver the Best Performance of His Career in 'Birdman' Michael Keaton Dug Deep to Deliver the Best Performance of His Career in 'Birdman' Mark Ruffalo Explains Why Dave Schultz Was One of the Most Complex Characters He's Ever Played Mark Ruffalo Explains Why Dave Schultz Was One of the Most Complex Characters He's Ever Played Keira Knightley on 'The Imitation Game' and Why Awards Matter Keira Knightley on 'The Imitation Game' and Why Awards Matter Katherine Waterston On the Good and Bad of Working With Paul Thomas Anderson Katherine Waterston On the Good and Bad of Working With Paul Thomas Anderson Emma Stone Proved She Can Do It All in 2014 Emma Stone Proved She Can Do It All in 2014 Jon Stewart is Off to a Strong Start with Directorial Debut 'Rosewater' Jon Stewart is Off to a Strong Start with Directorial Debut 'Rosewater' Awards Spotlight: Don't Be Surprised When J.K. Simmons Takes Home Oscar Awards Spotlight: Don't Be Surprised When J.K. Simmons Takes Home Oscar Jessica Chastain Proved She's a Total Chameleon in 2014 Jessica Chastain Proved She's a Total Chameleon in 2014 Laura Poitras on 'CITIZENFOUR,' The Most Dangerous Work She's Ever Done Laura Poitras on 'CITIZENFOUR,' The Most Dangerous Work She's Ever Done Jake Gyllenhaal On Doing Very Bad Things in 'Nightcrawler' Jake Gyllenhaal On Doing Very Bad Things in 'Nightcrawler' Channing Tatum Explains Why It Took Him Eight Years to Have the ‘Balls’ for ‘Foxcatcher’ Channing Tatum Explains Why It Took Him Eight Years to Have the ‘Balls’ for ‘Foxcatcher’ Ethan Hawke Didn't Know That Richard Linklater Would Bring 'Boyhood' Home So Well Ethan Hawke Didn't Know That Richard Linklater Would Bring 'Boyhood' Home So Well Jack O'Connell Explains What It’s Like to Work For Angelina Jolie Jack O'Connell Explains What It’s Like to Work For Angelina Jolie 'Red Army' Director Gabe Polsky Reveals the Story of Soviet Hockey 'Red Army' Director Gabe Polsky Reveals the Story of Soviet Hockey How Felicity Jones is Getting Noticed This Awards Season How Felicity Jones is Getting Noticed This Awards Season Edward Norton Goes Full-Blown For Alejandro González Iñárritu in 'Birdman' Edward Norton Goes Full-Blown For Alejandro González Iñárritu in 'Birdman' How Eddie Redmayne Transformed His Body and Mind to Become Stephen Hawking How Eddie Redmayne Transformed His Body and Mind to Become Stephen Hawking Oscar Isaac Explains How 'A Most Violent Year' Fits With His Other Roles Oscar Isaac Explains How 'A Most Violent Year' Fits With His Other Roles Timothy Spall Almost Went Mad to Play 'Mr. Turner' For Mike Leigh Timothy Spall Almost Went Mad to Play 'Mr. Turner' For Mike Leigh 'Gone Girl' Composer Atticus Ross: How to Write a Score Without Seeing the Film 'Gone Girl' Composer Atticus Ross: How to Write a Score Without Seeing the Film How to Play James Brown, By Chadwick Boseman: Study the Man, Listen to Drake How to Play James Brown, By Chadwick Boseman: Study the Man, Listen to Drake Chris Rock on Why Making 'Top Five' Was a No-Brainer Chris Rock on Why Making 'Top Five' Was a No-Brainer Steve James and Chaz Ebert Tackled 'Life Itself' Steve James and Chaz Ebert Tackled 'Life Itself' Bennett Miller Explains Why He Had to Make 'Foxcatcher' Bennett Miller Explains Why He Had to Make 'Foxcatcher' How Do You Roll Six Movies Into One? 'Wild Tales' Director Damian Szifron Explains How Do You Roll Six Movies Into One? 'Wild Tales' Director Damian Szifron Explains How Rosario Dawson Stole the Show From Chris Rock in 'Top Five' How Rosario Dawson Stole the Show From Chris Rock in 'Top Five' Alan Hicks: From Drummer-Surfer to Oscar-Shortlist Filmmaker Alan Hicks: From Drummer-Surfer to Oscar-Shortlist Filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu: 'Birdman' Could Have Been 'so wrong' Alejandro González Iñárritu: 'Birdman' Could Have Been 'so wrong' Amir Bar-Lev Likes to Make People a Little Uncomfortable Amir Bar-Lev Likes to Make People a Little Uncomfortable

In Their Own Words: Filmmakers Doug Pray And Steve Helvey Of "Hype!", Part I

By Indiewire | Indiewire December 20, 1996 at 2:00AM

In Their Own Words: Filmmakers Doug Pray And Steve Helvey Of "Hype!", part I
0

In Their Own Words: Filmmakers Doug Pray And Steve Helvey Of "Hype!", part I

by Eugene Hernandez



At the 1996 Sundance Film Festival, parked in a high profile spot at the base of Main Street, was a full size bus decorated with a sign that read simply -- "Hype!" Contrary to the first impression of some, the vehicle was not a statement on the state of the festival, but was actually an ingenious promotion for a festival film. The "Hype!" bus, sponsored by Sub-Pop records, contained a museum of artifacts and memorabilia from the Seattle music scene of the late-1980's and early 1990's. Like the film, it allowed the viewer the opportunity to inspect the much-hyped "grunge" scene from a fresh, informed perspective. Doug Pray's film, produced by Steve Helvey, explores the roots of the northwest rock scene, and details its explosion into a cultural phenomenon.


On a recent trip to New York City, Pray and Helvey shared their thoughts on their film,
Sundance, indie-distribution, and their thoughts on the future of exhibition.

Doug Pray: [The film] was Steve's idea, it was that simple. I had just graduated from UCLA and as we all know, your thesis film does not a job get you. He really wanted to make a feature film -- it just caught my attention...


Steve Helvey: The reason Doug never would have thought of making a movie about the Seattle rock scene -- even though he was up there -- is because he was so fully acquainted with the cynicism regarding the media up there. I saw his videos [for Northwest bands including Gas Huffer], and I asked him about the idea. I realized that there had to be a story below what we were seeing [in the media coverage of the Seattle music scene]. When [Doug] said to me that there was no way that [Seattleites] would ever let us make this movie because they were so cynical, that's when I new there was a great story, "Why are they so upset?" -- that captivated me.

Helvey: We faced a very clear decision at the beginning of this film as to what kind of film we wanted to make and we knew we could go super low budget -- one video camera, mic in the back of the room...typical rock film -- and that would have been one legitimate way to go. There are films that have done that and they're really cool. But the other way to go, that we ultimately
decided on...we wanted the performances to be as clear as possible. in other words we wanted the
filmmaking style...

Helvey: ...this should probably come from you [looking to Pray].

Pray: No, that's all right, go ahead. Talk about the decision to shoot with three cameras...

Helvey: So we decided to shoot with three [film] cameras. We decided we wanted to make a
film that would warrant theatrical release, that was an initial decision -- which meant it had to
look good and it had to sound great. And we started thinking about the audience for the film...
One core audience would be people who love the bands and love music, so we thought if they go into
the theater we want them to see these bands and we want them to hear great music, and we want them
to come out thinking 'WOW that movie rocked!' We wanted them to have a kind of emotional response
to the music, like you get in a club...to do that we knew it would be expensive.

Pray: Stylistically it was never about making a punk rock film, it was about making a film
about bands that are that way. If your filming a band that's just wild and intense...instead of
applying a style of filmmaking that's like that, it was the opposite...lets get out of the way...in
a way the techniques used in "Hype!" are very conservative. It's a really conservative film in the
sense that its really straight ahead, its close-ups, wide shots, not a lot of trick camera anything...
for the most part its really straight ahead. I told the camera guys -- look no MTV, no style, I want
this to be straight ahead and honest.

Helvey: In that respect we followed classic documentary discipline. We wanted to capture
what was actually happening in as honest and pure a form as we could. We wanted people to leave
talking about the music, not the camera movements.


To read the rest of this article, click here.

This article is related to: Interviews, Video: In Their Own Words






Check out Indiewire on LockerDome on LockerDome



Awards Season Spotlight

Contender Conversations

Indiewire celebrates the best and brightest from Independent film, Hollywood, and foreign cinema.

More