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Saito and Sayles Talk ‘Honeydripper’

Saito and Sayles Talk 'Honeydripper'

There’s gonna be an Austin Film Society premiere screening of John Sayles’ latest film, Honeydripper. It will be next month, and it will be quite a party. Stay tuned to those details, as they become public. In the meantime, Sayles is promoting the December 28 New York and L.A. opening of the film with a little press. And that includes an interview with my college pal, Stephen Saito, for IFC News. From their chat:

IFC: How did you discover your lead, Gary Clark Jr.?

Sayles: That was really nice serendipity because when I finished [the script], I said, oh my God, we’re going to have to find an African-American kid very young who plays this kind of guitar really well. There’s just not that many kids playing that guitar any more. And when our friend Louis Black, who’s one of the editors of the Austin Chronicle, heard we were making this movie and said, “Well, he might be a little too young, but there’s this kid named Gary Clark who I’ve been seeing since he was 14 years old and he’s just phenomenal.” So we went down to SXSW a couple years ago and saw Gary at the Continental Club, I think the night that he turned 21, and we read him the next day and it was, “Oh my God, I think he can act too.” We thought it was going to take a year and it was the first person we found. Then it was almost two years before we made the movie because we just couldn’t raise the money for it. But all I left Gary with was, “you’re going to be playing live and I know it’s not part of your act now, but you might want to practice playing while you’re climbing on chairs or tables.”

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