In the hot lazy days of a Mississippi summer two star-crossed lovers, a recently released ex-con (Chris Zylka) and an aspiring stripper (Riley Keough), become trapped in a downward spiral of crime and obsessive love, as they try to ditch their small town lives. [Synopsis Courtesy of Tribeca]
What’s your film about in 140 characters or less?
“Dixieland” is about a kid who gets out of jail, meets a beautiful girl who is in trouble and decides to help her the only way he knows how.
Now what’s it REALLY about?
The fabric of the movie is stitched together with interviews of real people from Pearl and Jackson, Mississippi. To me they are beautiful, funny, and heartbreaking. The movie is also very much about them.
Tell us briefly about yourself.
I grew up in Franklin, TN and this movie has been percolating in my mind since I was in college at Middle Tennessee State University.
Biggest challenge in completing this film?
The process of locking picture and letting go of it has been especially difficult.
What do you want the Tribeca audience to take away from your film?
For people to walk away from it and feel like they just experienced something, or were reminded of someone or some moment in their past. I did my best to capture Mississippi in the summertime.
Any films inspire you?
Too many to list but the ones that seem obvious to me are “Gummo,” “Badlands,” “The Killing Of A Chinese Bookie” and “My Own Private Idaho.” They all have an honesty and a poetry to them.
I’m writing a script that I’d like to shoot next year.
What cameras did you shoot on?
Arri Alexa with Panavision Ultra Speeds.
Did you crowdfund? If so, via what platform. If not, why?
No. We were able to fund the movie with the participation of a few extremely supportive and patient investors.
Did you go to film school? If so, which one?
No, but I learned a great deal working for several generous directors including David O. Russell and Bennett Miller.