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IndieWire Honors Video: Bill Hader Says That the Loss of FilmStruck ‘Was Like a Family Member Died’

Deep in production on the latest batch of episodes, the writer/director/star is still trying to make time to fill his brain with other things.

Bill Hader

Michael Buckner/Variety/REX/Shutterstock

On November 1, the 2018 IndieWire Honors ceremony celebrated eight filmmakers and actors for their achievement in creative independence. We’re showcasing their work with new interviews conducted right before they accepted their awards at the event.

Bill Hader’s last few weeks have brought a flurry of emotions. Deep into production on “Barry” Season 2, the recent announcement that FilmStruck would be shuttering seemed to bring out a lot of sympathy from the actor’s inner circle.

“That was a big kick in the balls. It was like a family member died. I got so many texts from people who were like ‘Dude, I’m so sorry,’” Hader told IndieWire. “It was like someone made a website just for me. And then WarnerMedia went, ‘Oh wait, this is just for Bill.’”

Discussing how the site helped his evolving film knowledge arsenal, Hader talked about picking up inspiration from films like the Billy Wilder classic “Ace in the Hole” and the 1935 Peter Lorre horror feature “Mad Love.”

“Sometimes, old movies have great coverage,” Hader said, noting that some of the best-looking films will only use three camera setups in a scene. “You only need that to tell a good story. You don’t need to cover it with 50 cameras. Paula Huidobro, the DP on ‘Barry,’ we talk about that a lot.”

Read More: Henry Winkler on Bill Hader: The ‘Barry’ Star Is ‘Wound Tight, Completely Open’ and ‘Instantly Funny’

Even while trying to deliver a worthy follow-up to one of the biggest critical TV hits of the year, Bill Hader still says he knows the value of taking a break every once in a while.

“You have to pull yourself out of it a bit or you can go crazy,” Hader told IndieWire. “You have to go macro a bit and just go watch something or go hang out with some friends or come to an award show or whatever to get your mind off of it.”

Before he accepted his Performance Award at this year’s IndieWire Honors, Hader explained that shooting on the first five episodes of “Barry” Season 2 is largely wrapped and that he’s deep into Episode 8, on which he’ll be the credited writer.

Reiterating what he’s said previously about “Barry” Season 2 being “somehow darker” than a bleak opening season, Hader stressed the importance of being willing to move outside any pre-conceived notions of where the character had been going before.

“Sometimes he’s really frustrating,” Hader said. “When I first started writing it, you would outline everything and try to pre-plan stuff. I’m learning you need to have structure, but you should let go of a lot and see where the character takes you.”

Watch the full interview with IndieWire Executive Editor Michael Schneider below:

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