Indiewire invited AFI FEST directors to tell us about their films, including what inspired them and the challenges they faced. The festival runs until November 13.
Joel Potrykus’s 2012 film “Ape” (also shown at AFI) was widely referred to as a return to 90s “slacker” films. His new film “Buzzard” has a similar love of nostalgia; it features a Nintendo power glove, tricked out with edge weapons. For all the retro moments though, “Buzzard” is unmistakably 2014. The film tells the story of Marty (Joshua Burge), a temp in a mortgage company, who has a building anger for the powerful corporation he works under; beginning with small schemes and building to something more violent. There’s some autobiography to the film; Potrykus, like Marty, once worked as a temp for a mortgage company. Here is the filmmaker giving a quick round-up of the film:
Biggest challenge in completing this project?
“Trying to sneak around with a camera and not tip the public that we were secretly shooting a movie.”
Did you crowdfund?
What camera did you shoot on?
“Canon 5d mkIII. Zeiss prime lenses.”
Advice for first-time filmmakers?
“Don’t be afraid to steal from others. Some of the most popular scenes in my films are lifted straight from other directors. Just make it your own.” Did you go to film school?
“Yes. But that’s classified.”
What films have inspired you?
“‘Alan Clarke’s ‘Made in Britain’, Lindsay Anderson’s ‘O Lucky Man!’, Martin Scorsese’s ‘Taxi Driver’, Vincent Gallo’s ‘Buffalo ’66’, Rick Alverson’s ‘The Comedy’, Luis Bunuel’s ‘The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeois’, Jim Jarmusch’s ‘Down by Law’, and most notably, James Nguyen’s ‘Birdemic’.”