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by Indiewire
April 15, 2013 4:43 PM
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Meet the 2013 Tribeca Filmmakers #39: Rob Meyer's Fresh Introduction to Birdwatching in Coming of Age Film, 'A Birder's Guide to Everything'

Rob Meyer

New York based filmmaker Rob Meyer grew up in Newton, Massachusetts with dreams of being a field scientist or wildlife filmmaker as a child. Before going to film school at NYU he worked on documentaries for PBS's NOVA and National Geographic. He made a short film called Aquarium in 2008 which was the inspiration and starting point for his feature,  "A Birder's Guide to Everything

."

What it's about:

Facing loss and searching for answers. More immediately, it's about teenage birders who go on a road trip to find a (possibly) extinct duck.

What else should audiences know?: "I grew up loving films like Goonies, Lucas, The Dark Crystal, and Stand by Me: the sort of coming-of-age films that seem rare now. I hope that Birder's has that same appeal to adults and kids alike -- a movie about teenagers that works at a universal level. It's also an ode to birding and the restorative power of nature."

On the challenges: "This is obvious, but getting an independent film made is incredibly challenging. And making one starring teens and about birding doesn't make things easier. It took a lot of persistence and luck to get this film off the ground but I was fortunate to have a core group who kept championing the project until it got made."

What he hopes Tribeca audiences will walk away with: "I'm hoping everyone who sees the film wants to go birding or will at least better understand why so many folks wake up early in the morning to look for something special. I also hope audiences let their guard down and allow themselves to be vulnerable and earnest, at least for a moment."

"A Birder's Guide to Everything"


Films that inspired him: "Certainly a lot of classic coming of age films inspired me, but also the films of Alexander Payne, Wes Anderson, and Tom McCarthy. Visually, I loved Tree of Life and studied the photography of Gregory Crewdson. I also watched the beautiful British film Kes during preproduction, which was the inspiration to have a kestrel at the start of the film."

What's next: "I'm working on a pilot script with my writing partner, Luke Matheny. It's sort of a Freaks and Geeks set in the early 90’s that deals with issues of race. I also have a few feature scripts I've been working on for a while now including a sci-fi psychothriller about a string quartet. And now that I've finally finished my feature I'm looking for a novel or story to adapt or a great script to direct."

Indiewire invited Tribeca Film Festival directors to tell us about their films, including what inspired them, the challenges they faced and what they're doing next. We'll be publishing their responses leading up to the 2013 festival.



Keep checking HERE every day up to the launch of the festival on April 17 for the latest profiles.

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