AUSTIN FILM FESTIVAL'S ON STORY PODCAST

This week, The Leftovers show-runner Damon Lindelof discusses his HBO show on the eve of its final season and we examine psychological thrillers with the writers behind American Horror Story, Redeye, Shut In and more.

 

Film and television writer and producer Damon Lindelof is best known as the co-creator of the ABC series Lost, and as the co-writer behind the films Star Trek- Into Darkness and Prometheus. Damon Lindelof also co-created HBO’s The Leftovers with novelist Tom Perrotta. The third and final season of The Leftovers premieres this month on HBO. We caught up with Damon Lindelof by phone last month. Clips in this half of our show copyright Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. We open with a clip from season 2 of the show. A quick word about this episode, some of the themes discussed may not be appropriate for younger audiences.

 

James Wong is a writer-executive producer of American Horror Story. He’s also known for having created the Final Destination franchise and for his work as a writer, director and producer on The X-Files.

 

Christina Hodson is the former development executive-turned screenwriter behind the recent horror-thriller Shut In, starring Naomi Watts as well as the erotic thriller Unforgettable. Her current projects include a reboot of The Fugitive and a coming film in The Transformers franchise.

 

Carl Ellsworth is a screenwriter whose credits include Disturbia, and the reboots of The Last House on the Left and Red Dawn. His television work includes episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Xena: Warrior Princess. Carl’s upcoming projects include a Gremlins reboot for Warner Bros. and producers Chris Columbus and Steven Spielberg.

Direct download: THE_LEFTOVERS_AND_PSYCH_THRILLERS.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 2:23pm CDT

On this episode of Austin Film Festival's On Story and Public Radio International, Fargo and Legion show-runner Noah Hawley describes the creation of his hit FX series based on the Coen brothers beloved film of the same name, and Better Call Saul co-creator Peter Gould brings Breaking Bad shady lawyer Saul Goodman to life. 

 

Noah Hawley is the show-runner for the FX series Fargo, which is based on the Coen brothers film of the same name and the X-Men spinoff series, Legion. He was a writer and producer on the series Bones, and created the shows, The Unusuals, and My Generation. Fargo has won numerous awards including a Peabody, three Emmy Awards and two Golden Globes, one for best mini-series, and the other for best actor in a miniseries for Billy Bob Thornton. Fargo comes back with its third season on April 19th.  This season stars Ewan McGregor, Carrie Coon, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, David Thewlis and Jim Gaffigan.

 

Peter Gould is the co-creator of AMC’s Breaking Bad spinoff Better Call Saul. Gould was a writer, producer and occasional director on Breaking Bad for the show’s five-season run. Better Call Saul focuses on the character of Jimmy McGill played by actor Bob Odenkirk. The show is set in 2002, six years before the character’s appearance on Breaking Bad as the shady attorney Saul Goodman. The third season of Better Call Saul premieres on April 10th.

Direct download: FARGO_AND_BETTER_CALL_SAUL.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 2:53pm CDT

This week, actor, screenwriter and author Jason Segel discusses his career from Freaks and Geeks to Forgetting Sarah Marshall to The Muppets and beyond.

 

 

Actor-screenwriter-author Jason Segel got his start on the cult comedy series Freaks and Geeks. Since then, he’s gone on to play memorable and endearing comedic roles in film and on television. He wrote and starred in Forgetting Sarah Marshall along side Mila Kunis, Kristin Bell and Russell Brand, as well as 2011’s The Muppets. He went back to television in 2005, playing Marshall Eriksen on the CBS series How I Met Your Mother for nine seasons, and his other films include Knocked Up, This is 40, The End of the Tour and the upcoming Neflix feature, The Discovery. Journalist Matthew Odam spoke with Jason Segel at the 23rd Austin Film Festival in 2016. Clips in this episode copyright Universal City Studios Productions LLLP.

Direct download: JASON_SEGEL.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 1:09pm CDT

This week, Friends co-creator Marta Kauffman discusses her work on that show, HBO’s Dream On and her latest series, Grace and Frankie. Later, we hear from How I Met Your Mother co-creator, Carter Bays.

 

Emmy and Golden Globe-winning writer, producer and show-runner Marta Kauffman got her big break in the early 1990’s when she and her then-writing partner David Crane created the first HBO original comedy, Dream On. The two went on to create the prime-time network comedy institution, Friends. During its 10-year run (1994-2004), Friends landed 63 Emmy nominations, winning Outstanding Comedy Series in 2002. One of Marta Kauffman’s latest projects is the critically acclaimed Netflix original comedy, Grace and Frankie. The series features a dream-team ensemble top-lined by veteran actors Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston in a story about two nemeses whose husbands announce they are in love with each other and plan to get married – bringing the women together in a strange and often hilarious twist of fate. Barbara Morgan spoke with Marta Kauffman in 2016 at the 23rd Austin Film Festival where we honored Marta Kauffman with AFF’s Outstanding Television Writer Award. Clips in this half of our program copyright Warner Bros. Television, Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions and Skydance Productions, LLC.

 

Emmy and Golden Globe-winning writer, producer and show-runner Marta Kauffman got her big break in the early 1990’s when she and her then-writing partner David Crane created the first HBO original comedy, Dream On. The two went on to create the prime-time network comedy institution, Friends. During its 10-year run (1994-2004), Friends landed 63 Emmy nominations, winning Outstanding Comedy Series in 2002. One of Marta Kauffman’s latest projects is the critically acclaimed Netflix original comedy, Grace and Frankie. The series features a dream-team ensemble top-lined by veteran actors Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston in a story about two nemeses whose husbands announce they are in love with each other and plan to get married – bringing the women together in a strange and often hilarious twist of fate. Barbara Morgan spoke with Marta Kauffman in 2016 at the 23rd Austin Film Festival where we honored Marta Kauffman with AFF’s Outstanding Television Writer Award. Clips in this half of our program copyright Warner Bros. Television, Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions and Skydance Productions, LLC.

 

Carter Bays is best known, with his writing partner Craig Thomas, as the co-creator and show-runner of the CBS sitcom How I Met Your Mother. The series stars Josh Radnor, Jason Segel, Cobie Smulders, Neil Patrick Harris, Alyson Hannigan and Cristin Milioti.

How I Met Your Mother was nominated for 28 Emmy awards in its nine-season run. In that time, the show took home nine Emmys, two Golden Globes and a total of 72 award nominations total. How I Met Your Mother concluded in 2014 with a total of 208 episodes. Literary agent Becka Oliver spoke with Carter Bays in 2016 at the 23rd Austin Film Festival.

Direct download: Friends_and_How_I_Met_Your_Mother_adjusted.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 3:38pm CDT

It is a truth widely acknowledged that no one goes into theatre to strike it rich as a playwright. As the creative landscape continues to grow within film, television, and new media, there are now more avenues for playwrights to truly make the world their stage. Join Austin Film Festival, the Writers Guild of America, East, and the Dramatists Guild of America for a conversation featuring playwrights who have turned their passion for the stage into a valuable currency in other mediums.

This episode features:
Beau Willimon – Creator/Executive Producer, House of Cards
Warren Leight – Executive Producer, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit
Adam Rapp – Co-executive Producer, Vinyl
Tracey Scott Wilson – Co-producer/writer, The Americans
Moderator: Howard Sherman

Direct download: PLAYWRIGHTS_IN_THE_WRITERS_ROOM.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 2:53pm CDT

This week, comic genius Paula Pell on life from the writers room to the film set as she discusses her work on Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock, Bridesmaids, The Heat, Sisters and more.

 

Paula Pell got her start in the writers room at Saturday Night Live in 1995 and wrote for that show for twenty years. She was a writer-producer on 30 Rock where she played Pete Hornberger’s wife, Paula, and her numerous cameo appearances include Tammy Zero, the mother of Parks and Rec character Ron Swanson as well as performances in the 2015 Oscar-winning Birdman and Anchorman 2. She’s also voiced several animated characters from “Dream Director” in the Pixar film Inside Out to Barbara on Nick Kroll’s Big Mouth. Her film writing credits include additional writing on Bridesmaids, This is 40 and The Heat, as well as the screenplay for the Tina Fey and Amy Poehler comedy Sisters. Paula Pell’s recent web series Hudson Valley Ballers is streaming now on You Tube.

Direct download: SNL_VETERAN_PAULA_PELL_adjusted.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 11:47am CDT

In honor of women’s history month, this week’s On Story features Callie Khouri, (Thelma and Louise, Nashville) Michelle Ashford, (Masters of Sex) and Caroline Thompson (Edward Scissorhands) discuss their illustrious careers in film and television.

 

Filmmaker Callie Khouri won the Academy Award in 1992 for her first screenplay, Thelma & Louise. The film, starring Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis in the title roles, was directed by Ridley Scott and included performances by Harvey Keitel, Michael Madsen and Brad Pitt in one of his earliest appearances on the big screen. Thelma & Louise was once considered controversial for its feminist overtones, but has since achieved classic status even inspiring songs by Tori Amos (Me and a Gun) and Argentinean Fito Paez (Dos Dias En La Vida) as well as countless parodies of it’s final scene on television and even video games. Callie Khouri’s other films include Something To Talk About, Divine Secrets of the Ya-YA Sisterhood and the series, Nashville.

 

Screenwriter Michelle Ashford is best known for her work on the 2010 miniseries, The Pacific. Her current series, Masters Of Sex is based on Thomas Maier’s biography of legendary sex researchers Dr William Masters and Virginia Johnson. The Showtime drama set in the 1950’s and 60’s stars Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan, and has been renewed for a fourth season to air in later in 2016.

 

Novelist, screenwriter, film director, and producer Caroline Thompson is credited with the screenplays for films Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and The Addams Family as well as adaptations of The Secret Garden and Black Beauty, which she also directed. Caroline Thompson’s other credits include the films Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey, and Snow White: The Fairest of Them All.

Direct download: KHOURI_ASHFORD_THOMPSON_adjusted.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 11:54am CDT

This week, Herschel Weingrod, the writer behind Brewster’s Millions, Kindergarten Cop and Twins, discusses his Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd classic, Trading Places. Later, the filmmaker behind Private Benjamin, Father of the Bride and The Parent Trap, Nancy Meyers.

Screenwriter Herschel Weingrod whose credits include the screenplays for the films, Brewster’s Millions, starring Richard Pryor and John Candy, the highly quotable Kindergarten Cop starring none other than Arnold Schwarzenegger, Twins with Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito and Trading Places.

Nancy Meyers is a trailblazing writer-director who has created a body of work focusing largely on the female experience beginning with the 1980 comedy Private Benjamin starring Goldie Hawn, all the way to her most recent film, The Intern, starring Robert DeNiro and Anne Hathaway. She wrote and directed The Parent Trap starring Lindsay Lohan, Something’s Gotta Give with Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton and wrote, directed and produced The Holiday, starring Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Jude Law and Jack Black. Her other credits include the unforgettable films, Baby Boom, Father of the Bride and What Women Want.

Direct download: CLASSIC_80S_COMEDY_adjusted.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 2:44pm CDT

This week’s On Story, two critically and culturally acclaimed African-American directors: John Singleton and Charles Burnett. First, Singleton discusses his career and the creation of his first film, Boyz n the Hood (1991), which earned him the Best Director nomination at the Academy Awards®, making him the first African American nominee in that category that same year. Later, Charles Burnett highlights details of his career development in narrative and documentary filmmaking, with his seminal film Killer of Sheep (1978), a definitive representation of the African American cultural experience.  

John Singleton made his filmmaking debut in 1991 as the writer-director of the groundbreaking urban drama Boys N The Hood, which he wrote and directed. The film earned him Academy Award® Nominations for Best Original Screenplay and Best Director, the latter of which made him the youngest person as well as the first African-American to enjoy that distinction. Singleton’s other films include Poetic Justice starring Janet Jackson and Tupac Shakur, Four Brothers with Mark Wahlberg, Tyrese Gibson and Andre Benjamin and Rosewood starring John Voight, Ving Rhames and Don Cheadle.

Charles Burnett’s most notable works include the films Killer of Sheep, My Brother’s Wedding and To Sleep With Anger. Killer of Sheep was Charles Burnett’s master’s thesis at UCLA and was included among the first 50 films entered in the National Film Registry for its historical importance by the Library of Congress in 1990. Charles Burnett has received numerous awards for his contribution to American cinema including a Guggenheim Fellowship and Howard University’s Paul Robeson Award.

Direct download: SINGLETON_BURNETT_REFEED_adjusted.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 8:26am CDT

On Story Episode 1707: Issa Rae from Awkward Black Girl to HBO’s Insecure

This week, web series creator-turned cable TV sensation Issa Rae on her journey from YouTube to HBO, her desire for diversity on television and her hit series Insecure. We'll also hear from comedy empresario Larry Wilmore on his work developing Insecure with Issa Ray and his perspective on diverse new voices in comedy.

With her own unique flare and infectious sense of humor, Issa Rae’s content has garnered over 25 million views and close to 200,000 subscribers on YouTube. In addition to making the Forbes 30 Under 30 list twice and winning awards for her web series “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl,” Issa Rae has worked on web content for Pharrell Williams, Tracey Edmonds and numerous others. She developed a TV series with Shonda Rhimes for ABC and most recently she developed the hit series, “Insecure” for HBO. Rae is also the New York Times Best Selling author of, “The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl”.

Larry Wilmore started his career as an actor and stand-up comedian before writing and producing on the early nineties classic television shows In Living Color, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and The Jamie Foxx Show . He co-created The PJ’s with Eddie Murphy, The Bernie Mac Show and was consulting producer and guest star on the American version of The Office. Most recently, Wilmore was the host of Comedy Central’s The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore. We caught up with him by phone to discuss his work with Issa Rae and other new voices in comedy.

Direct download: ISSA_RAE_AND_LARRY_WILMORE_adjusted.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 10:52am CDT