Last week, shortly after the death of acclaimed editor (and occasional actor) James Lyons, a film industry insider texted me urging that indieWIRE devote editorial space to honor Jim. We waited a few days to figure out the best way to approach this passing and on Monday morning a leading independent producer emailed a group of us about Jim Lyons and we all came up with the idea of presenting an online memorial that would include the remembrances of some of Jim’s closest friends from the film community and a few photos. On the day of Jim’s memorial in Port Jefferson, NY, our hope is that it will be a place where other friends, as well as indieWIRE readers, can share their thoughts about James Lyons and his work.
Gathering the memorial pieces tonight was an overwhelming experience. Collectively the remembrances offer a striking portrait and reveal the depths of his impact on a generation of New York’s independent filmmakers. I found John Cameron Mitchell‘s tribute to Jim Lyons incredibly moving — at times even hard to read — and decided it should lead indieWIRE’s tribute. The other insightful and well-written salutes are also equally striking and insightful.
Like perhaps most iW readers, I know James best through his work in film. His is an incredible filmography that includes some of the very best films made in the modern era of American independent cinema, many of which are personal favorites. Condolences to Jim’s loved ones, family and friends.