Taika Waititi is the writer, director and star of "Boy," which premiered at this year's Sundance Film Festival. James Rolleston is his pre-teen co-star. The film, based on Waititi's Oscar-nominated short, is a funny and affecting coming-of-age story set in a rural New Zealand village.
Rolleston plays "Boy," a young Maori boy who lives with his grandmother. When she heads off to a funeral in the city, he's put in charge of the house, and is shocked when his father, played by Waititi, comes home from jail. Boy and his father struggle to connect, as the father struggles with the responsibilities of adulthood. Rolleston and Waititi both offer vibrant and hilarious performances.
Waititi previously directed "Eagle vs. Shark," which starred his former comedy partner Jemaine Clement of Flight of the Conchords. "Boy" is based upon his Oscar-nominated short "Two Cars, One Night." Waititi famously feigned sleep when his nomination was read at the Academy Awards.
The Sound of Young America was in Park City, Utah for the Sundance Film Festival this year, and we took the opportunity to talk to the hottest film directors, actors, and creatives. Here’s our first part in that series, in which we talk to actor Kevin Kline.
Kevin Kline is one of America's greatest actors. He's one of the few to have won an Oscar for a comic role (his amazing turn in "A Fish Called Wanda"), and he's been acclaimed for his work in everything from contemporary drama to Shakespeare to light opera. We spoke with him at Sundance after the release of "The Extra Man”, a film adaptation of a Jonathan Ames novel. Kline stars as Henry, an eccentric older gentleman who makes his living as a social escort to New York’s high society widows.
Aziz Ansari is a comedian and actor. He's a regular on Parks and Recreation, and a member of the comedy group Human Giant. He's also been in films like Observe & Report and Funny People. His new standup special, "Intimate Moments for a Sensual Evening," premiers Sunday, January 17th on Comedy Central. It's released on CD and DVD shortly thereafter.
A) Elvis always brings the insight.
B) Werner Herzog is one of the greatest New Sincericists of our time.
C) This interview is the most fun you'll have between now and New Year's.
D) Below: Werner Herzog gets shot by an air rifle.
Donald Glover is an actor, writer and comedian. He left a writing job on NBC's 30 Rock to take an acting gig on Community. His sketch comedy group, Derrick Comedy, just released their first feature film, Mystery Team. He also performs standup comedy - his first Comedy Central special premiers in March.
Mark Duplass is an actor and filmmaker. He stars in the F/X comedy The League, and with his brother Jay has made several films including Baghead and The Puffy Chair (in which Mark also starred). Their new film, Cyrus, stars John C. Reilly, Jonah Hill, Catherine Keener and Marisa Tomei, and premiers at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. The League's season finale airs Thursday, December 10th on F/X, and the full series can be viewed on Hulu.
I'm prepping for an interview with the very talented Mark Duplass, who in addition to making films like The Puffy Chair with his brother Jay is in the ensemble cast of the FX series The League, which also features our pals Paul Scheer and Nick Kroll. Mark said this short, which he shot with his brother after a disastrous attempt at a feature film, was the first thing they ever did that they actually liked. I like it, too.
UPDATED: I'm sorry to say the video of "This Is John" is no longer available online.
The BBC is reporting that the new film by humor God Chris Morris, (who created the amazing series The Day Today and Brass Eye in the 1990s with help from past TSOYA guests Graham Linehan and Armando Iannucci) has been shortlisted for competition in the world cinema portion of the Sundance Film Festival.
Which, I guess, means it's done and going to come out. Which I didn't know. And is awesome.
It centers on four British would-be terrorists in a terrorist training camp.
Which, again, is awesome.
A few months ago, filmmaker Gary Hustwit was on The Sound of Young America to talk about his documentary Objectified. At the time, he was touring with the film - if you missed the tour because of scheduling or geography, you can now catch the film on the PBS series Independent Lens, starting tonight.
Most PBS stations carry Independent Lens, to find out when yours does, use this handy tool.