Ashby Update: Adam Mckay on Being There

We are treating each of Hal’s films of the 1970s as case studies where contemporary directors break them down and act as a guide for those sections. Because the ultimate film geeks are film directors themselves- we thought this added layer would give a voice to Ashby’s influence on current filmmaking. It was so cool to catch up with Adam McKay and talk about Being There. In case you’re not a film nerd, McKay is the hilarious mind behind Anchorman, The Other Guys, and Step Brothers to highlight a few hits in his very prolific career.


He broke down his appreciation for Being There on a meta-level by examining celebrity worship, media obsession, and chance. By using a present-day lens to dissect how virtually unknown people can oftentimes rise to positions of power simply by mirroring the actions of those around them- he drew super insightful impressions of Chauncy Gardiner’s rise to power and fame.

As a veteran comedian and comic writer/director, his insights on Peter Sellers performance and comic timing are fascinating. McKay sees the humor and meditative qualities of the film, but also the darker undercurrent of the plausibility of this scenario actually happening- and how Jerzy Kosinski informed the darker side of the narrative. Although what’s interesting about the film Being There is that we also got to talk to the person who actually wrote the screenplay. Stay tuned for more on that.

YEAH! weddings reel

Have you ever seen the Perfect Storm by Wolfgang Peterson? It’s a super dramatic movie about three hurricanes crashing into each other and making Mark Wahlberg, John C. Reilly, and George Clooney really scared and then die. (SPOILER!) Anyway sorry, the reason we bring it up is that it’s a metaphor for this hype company we have called YEAH! Weddings. The basic deal with it is that if you book three or more of our services (photography, DJ, video, smilebooth) together, we give you a huge discount.

Here’s the thing. We like working together. And if you’ll let us do that, we’ll hook you up with an amazing discount. Does that make sense? You’re making our jobs more fun us, so we’re down to make things more affordable.

Not only is it more fun; it’s better. When we work together, our creativity feeds off each other, and the whole becomes greater than the sum of the parts. As you can probably tell… we’re not really into tradition. We have a reputation for making you dance, going WAY out of our way for breathtaking photography, loading your venue with furniture that both your grandpa and your niece will appreciate, printing photos that you’ll hide from your Mom, and making you cry every anniversary because you’ll get to revisit a fantastic day.

Check out this reel from the videography branch. We try and keep it fresh even though we’re all really a bunch of romantic saps. Our clients become our friends, so don’t be surprised if we invite you over for a drink and a movie. Maybe a weird nineties flick about a storm with George Clooney… with storms.

Look At Me Now – London Future & Djemba Djemba

On Shark Pig’s very first corporate job – back when I shot by myself and edited on an old broken lap top – I called this kid and begged him to write me a “safe” score for these silly little internal corporate videos. We were both just trying to get our careers off the ground. Since then Djemba Djemba has signed on as a producer for Mad Decent, and has had the chance to collaborate with a veritable who’s who of new artists like London Future. So to be able to direct this music video for him now – after all that – feels pretty hype. Check it out:

I don’t know if it’s because I’ve directed one too many cute videos lately, but I like how dark and bizarre we got to go. I definitely had some Ed Wood type feelings on set. As with anything, any success is due to the cast and crew involved. I’m lucky to be in such good company.

Cast: Brian McGuire, Eliza Roberts , Steven Flores, Christina Bullard, Kevin Cannon

Director: Brian Morrow
Producer: Jonathan Lynch
Cinematographer: Jonathon Narducci
SFX Makeup: Hugo Villasenor
Production Designer: Adam Henderson
Stylist: Brianna Hanson
Gaffer: Nik Smith

Ashby Update: Father John Misty covers Trouble for “Once I Was”

I’m flipping. I know that’s we always write in blogs. This is a promotional space. It’s a place for exciting news and what not. But I’m having a hard time expressing how I actually feel when I listen to Father John Misty’s haunting, gorgeous version of “Trouble” that he made for our upcoming documentary Once I Was. I’ll try and explain why I think it’s so cool. There’s a few reasons. First of all because I had his album “Fear Fun” on repeat in my car especially that song “Nancy from Now On” while I subjected any and all passengers to my off key singing. It’s a great record if you haven’t checked it out. Secondly because Cat Steven’s original version of Trouble is the score during the ending of Harold and Maude. It’s the perfect use of music in film. It still blows me away. If you want to hear our music supervisor Thomas Golubic talk about Ashby’s use of music in film check out this.

And please please please take a moment to check out the song, written up here on Aquarium Drunkard. I think that’s what makes it so cool to me…the combination of artists all of whom I really look up to. And that somehow I get to be involved with them through this film. I’m flipping.

Individual Medley: Behind the Scenes