Austin Film Festival's On Story

This week we’ll hear from David Kessler, writer & producer of the docu-drama Minamata starring Johnny Depp.

David Kessler began his career as a stand-up comedian in the early 2000s before quickly deciding to focus on writing. After penning a spec script for Will & Grace, he switched over to drama, and optioned the life rights and book titled Minamata, written by Aileen Mioko Smith and W. Eugene Smith. 

The film stars Johnny Depp as W. Eugene Smith, an American photographer who documented the effects of mercury poisoning on the citizens of Minamata, Kumamoto, Japan in the early 1970s.

The film went through various stages of development over many years before finally getting picked up by Johnny Depp’s production company.

I recently had the pleasure of speaking with David about the film’s journey to the big screen following it’s US release. 

Clips of Minamata courtesy of Minamata Film, LLC

Direct download: Writing_Minamata_with_David_Kessler.mp3
Category:Film and Television -- posted at: 12:00pm CDT