Switchblade Sisters

Switchblade Sisters Episode 85: 'Night Tide' with 'Gas Food Lodging' Director Allison Anders

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Guests: 
Allison Anders

Night Tide

Allison Anders is an award-winning screenwriter, film and television director who was born in Kentucky and raised in LA. She attended film school at UCLA, where she co-directed the 1987 feature film Border Radio. Her first solo feature film, starring Fairuza Balk and Ione Skye, Gas Food Lodging premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 1992, and earned her Independent Spirit Award Nominations for Best Director and Best Screenplay. She went on to write and direct the feature films Mi vida loca, Grace of My Heart, and Sugar Town, as well as Things Behind the Sun, for which she won a Peabody award. She’s directed episodes of Sex and the City, Orange Is the New Black, Southland, Riverdale, Murder in the First and recently Sorry for Your Loss.

The movie that Allison has chosen to discuss is a deep cut, but a good one. It's the moody, horror, thriller Night Tide. Allison discusses her early fascination with the film and how it keeps re-emerging in her life. She elaborates on the beginning of her career, and how it really spawned from deeply stalking Wim Wenders. Allison talks at length about the move from independent features to directing television. And she has an amazing story of helping Harry Dean Stanton cultivate his character on Paris, Texas with a poem she wrote after having a catatonic episode.

If you haven't seen any of Allison's films, Gas Food Lodging is a great place to start.

And go watch Night Tide too, while you're at it.

With Katie Walsh and Allison Anders.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Sisters Episode 84: ‘3 Days of the Condor’ with the Incomparable Adrienne Barbeau

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Guests: 
Katie Walsh
Guests: 
Adrienne Barbeau

3 Days of the Condor

Adrienne Barbeau was born in Sacramento, California, and caught the showbiz bug while entertaining troops on Army bases in Southeast Asia as part of the San Jose Civic Light Opera. She moved to New York City in the 1960s and made her Broadway debut co-starring in Fiddler on the Roof with Bette Midler. She went on to star in more than 25 musicals and plays, originating the role of Rizzo in the Broadway production of Grease, for which she was nominated for a Tony. From 1972 to 1978, Adrienne starred in the sitcom Maude as Carol, the daughter of Bea Arthur’s character. She was nominated for a Golden Globe for that role. She also made appearances in numerous TV shows, movies of the week and game shows. In 1980 Adrienne starred in her first theatrical film, John Carpenter’s The Fog, as radio deejay Stevie Wayne. That film established her as a genre film star. She went on to star in sci fi and horror classics such as Escape from New York, Wes Craven’s Swamp Thing, and the Steven King adaptation Creep Show. She’s also starred in comedies like Canonball Run and Back to School and Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death. She’s never stopped working and we’re thrilled to have her on the show with guest host Katie Walsh.

Adrienne chose to talk about 3 Days of the Condor, based on the 1974 novel Six Days of the Condor by James Grady. Sidney Pollack directed the 1975 film, which was written by Lorenzo Semple Jr. and David Rayfiel.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch 3 Days of the Condor. For those of you with library cards, you can stream it for free on Kanopy.

With Katie Walsh and Adrienne Barbeau.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 83: ‘Shaun of the Dead’ with ‘Broad City’ writer and comedian Naomi Ekperigin

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Guests: 
Katie Walsh
Guests: 
Naomi Ekperigin

Shaun of the Dead

Naomi Ekperigin is a stand-up comedian, writer, actress, and podcaster (gotta be a multi-hyphenate these days!). She was born and raised in Harlem, New York, and studied Film and English at Wesleyan University, where she and guest host Katie Walsh made student films together, and she also started her comedy career, doing improv. After college, she toured with the National Theater for the Deaf, and started stand-up in New York in 2007. She has a half-hour stand up special on Comedy Central, and she’s also appeared on HBO’s Two Dope Queens, Late Night with Seth Meyers, Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell, Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and she has written for Broad City, Difficult People, Great News, and Mrs. Fletcher. You can find Naomi doing stand up around town in LA and New York, and she co-hosts the monthly standup show Couples Therapy in LA at the Virgil, the first Saturday of every month, with her fiance Andy Beckerman, and Couples Therapy is also a podcast, where she and Andy talk about relationships and play sets from their live show.

Naomi chose the 2004 ZomCom Shaun of the Dead, written by Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright, who also directed the film. She and Katie delve into what makes this “a perfect film”, analyzing the film’s use of visual jokes, pacing, and character development. Katie asks Naomi what the parallels are between the writing and humor on Shaun of the Dead and Broad City.

Plus, Ekperigin has given a lot of thought to how she would handle herself in a zombie apocalypse, and shares her thoughts on what weapons she’d carry, as well as the best clothing for survival.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch Shaun of the Dead

With Katie Walsh and Naomi Ekperigin.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 82: 'Unfaithful' with 'Being Frank' Director Miranda Bailey

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Guests: 
Miranda Bailey

Unfaithful

Miranda Bailey is a producer, actor and director. She’s produced over 20 films, among them the Oscar-nominated The Squid and the Whale, the Spirit Award-winning The Diary of a Teenage Girl, as well as James Gunn’s Super, the Sundance hit Swiss Army Man and the critically acclaimed Norman. Her directorial debut came in 2010 with the documentary Greenlit, a humorous piece examining the hypocrisy inherent in Hollywood’s green movement, which premiered at SXSW. Bailey’s directorial narrative feature debut Being Frank, an offbeat family dramedy premiered in the Spotlight Section at the 2018 SXSW Film Festival and 2018 Los Angeles Film Festival. The film stars Jim Gaffigan, Anna Gunn, Samantha Mathis and Logan Miller.

The movie that Miranda has chosen to discuss is the super sexy Unfaithful. She and April talk about the art of seduction in film, and Miranda relates some stories of directing sex scenes in her own movies. Miranda shares her experience working with Richard Gere and why she feels she could call him if she was being murdered. Plus the two dissect director Adrian Lyne's filmography of seductive thrillers, and why the most important scenes in his films frequently involve the toilet.

You can check out Being Frank in theaters this Father's Day.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch Unfaithful.

With April Wolfe and Miranda Bailey.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 81: 'E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial' with 'The Devil Wears Prada' writer and 'Crazy Ex-Girlfriend' Co-Creator/ Showrunner Aline Brosh McKenna

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Guests: 
Aline Brosh McKenna

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

Aline began her screenwriting career in 1999 with her first produced feature, the romantic comedy Three to Tango, starring Neve Campbell. That film established Aline as a go-to writer of realistic drama and romance. She followed that film up with 2004’s Laws of Attraction, starring Julianne Moore and Pierce Brosnan. But her best known work came with the film adaptation of the popular novel, The Devil Wears Prada, a modern classic, and features one of Meryl Streep’s signature roles as the imperious magazine editor, Miranda Priestly. In 2014, Aline added television to her resume when she co-created the critically acclaimed, Emmy award-winning comedy series, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, on which she served as head writer, showrunner, and executive producer. The series just finished airing its fourth and final season on the CW.

The movie that Aline has chosen to discuss is the wonderful Steven Spielberg film, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. She discusses how the film has become one of her favorites over the years, and one that she admires as a feat of technical storytelling. She dives into the process of working with actors to help change movie scripts on set, like working with Emily Blunt on The Devil Wears Prada to fully develop her character. She elaborates on showrunning Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and the insane schedule of producing a musical one hour sitcom. Aline also bemoans the lack of character-driven films that were so prevalent in the '70's, and how she frequently falls asleep during the final fights of Marvel films.

You can check out Crazy Ex-Girlfriend on Netflix now.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.

With April Wolfe and Aline Brosh McKenna.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 80: 'An American Werewolf in London' with 'American Psycho' and 'Charlie Says' Writer Guinevere Turner

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Guests: 
Guinevere Turner

An American Werewolf in London

Guinevere Turner is a writer, director and actor who has been working in film and TV since her 1994 debut feature Go Fish, which she wrote, produced and starred in. The film premiered at Sundance and then got picked up by Samuel Goldwyn. Next, Guinevere teamed up with director Mary Harron to write the adaptation of Bret Easton Ellis’ novel American Psycho, starring Christian Bale as a psychopathic finance guy who murders people for fun and to see how much he can get away with. Guinevere also worked with Harron writing The Notorious Bettie Page. She was a writer, story editor, and played a recurring character on Showtime’s The L Word. Her latest screenplay, Charlie Says, tells the story of the women who killed for Charles Manson as they serve out the first few years of their decades-long prison term. Charlie Says is directed by Mary Harron and is in theaters now.

The movie that Guinevere has chosen to discuss is An American Werewolf in London. She and April elaborate on just how groundbreaking this film was in terms of its combination of comedy and real horror. They, of course, dissect the famous werewolf transformation scene. Plus, Guinevere talks about her own process, and how her childhood spent in a cult inspired her newest film Charlie Says. She reveals that she hates it when actors change the dialogue from one of her screenplays, but conversely, as an actress she always asks if she can change lines. She discusses her dislike of tricking actors into performances. And she even touches upon working with Christian Bale on American Psycho and her decades long collaborative relationship with Mary Harron.

You can check out Charlie Says in theaters now.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch An American Werewolf in London.

With April Wolfe and Guinevere Turner.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 79: 'The Red Queen Kills Seven Times' with 'Body at Brighton Rock' Director Roxanne Benjamin

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Guests: 
Roxanne Benjamin

The Red Queen Kills Seven Times

Roxanne Benjamin is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker, who began her career in creative development, analyzing story for film festivals and production companies. In 2010, she moved up the ladder at a company called The Collective, where she went on to produce the well known anthology horror films V/H/S and V/H/S/2, which premiered at Sundance Midnights. Roxanne then helmed the short “Don’t Fall”, part of Magnolia Pictures’ all-women-helmed horror anthology, XX. She served double duty on the film, co-writing and producing the segment “The Birthday Party” for musician-turned-director Annie Clark aka St. Vincent. Body at Brighton Rock is her solo feature directorial debut. It tells the story of a young woman working the trails of a mountainous park, who finds a dead body in the middle of nowhere and is given orders to guard the scene, facing down all her worst fears. Roxanne is currently working on a remake of Night of the Comet for Orion Pictures.

The movie that Roxanne has chosen to discuss is a giallo classic - The Red Queen Kills Seven Times by Emilio Miraglia. She and April go over all the tenants of the Italian giallo genre - the murder, the fashion, the blood! Roxanne talks about how giallo has influenced the way she works on her own films, and particularly, how she crafts her kills on screen. Plus she goes into detail on the production of her newest film, Body at Brighton Rock, and the "1980's TV movie" look she was going for. She and April also dissect the unfortunate prevalence of rape in the horror genre, and how so often it's disturbingly used as a device to titillate.

You can check out Body at Brighton Rock streaming now.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch The Red Queen Kills Seven Times.

With April Wolfe and Roxanne Benjamin.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 78: 'Mulholland Drive' with 'Wild Nights with Emily' Director Madeleine Olnek

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Guests: 
Madeleine Olnek

Mulholland Drive

Madeleine Olnek is a New York City based playwright and filmmaker. She began her career with award-winning and widely screened comedy shorts. ​Countertransference ​(2009) and Hold Up ​(2006) were official selections of Sundance, while ​Make Room For Phyllis ​(2007) premiered at Sarasota. Olnek was also awarded best female short film director at Sundance in 2009 by LA’s Women In Film organization. Her debut feature, ​Codependent Lesbian Space Alien Seeks Same, told the story of three lesbian space aliens who come to Earth, and one of them falls in love with an earthling. It ​premiered at Sundance 2011 and is now translated into eleven languages. Her second feature, ​The Foxy Merkins,​ is a kind of buddy-comedy homage about two lesbian prostitutes. She is one of the authors of The Practical Handbook for The Actor (with a foreword by David Mamet), a widely used acting textbook. And now she’s back with her third feature, Wild Nights with Emily, a perhaps more truthful yet comic telling of the life of Emily Dickinson, starring Molly Shannon as the eponymous poet. Madeleine was awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship for the completion of the film, so it is a BIG DEAL.

The movie that Madeleine has chosen to discuss is one that she calls a "masterpiece." That would be David Lynch's Mulholland Drive. Madeleine likens the film to The Bible in that there are many interpretations that are applicable across generations. She discusses how she is personally connected to the film and how she felt that it truly mirrored her own life. Madeleine even dons David Lynch "our great poet of filmmaking" and explains why this film (and Inland Empire) are his greatest poems. She also discusses why she cast Molly Shannon in her newest film, Wild Nights with Emily. And how most literary adaptations do not properly portray the true words and feelings of a piece of literature. She ends the conversation with explaining why artists have the moral obligation to put humor in their work, and how making a straight drama is not a creative choice.

You can check out Wild Night with Emily in theaters now.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch Mulholland Drive.

With April Wolfe and Madeleine Olnek.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 77: 'The Peanut Butter Solution' with 'Pet Sematary' Actor and 'The Girlfriend Experience' Co-creator Amy Seimetz

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Guests: 
Amy Seimetz

The Peanut Butter Solution

Amy Seimetz started out writing, directing, and acting in short films and made her feature debut in a pair of films, Black Dragon Canyon and the indie cult hit Wristcutters: A Love Story. She appeared in films such as Gabi on the Roof in July, Tiny Furniture, You're Next, and The Myth of the American Sleepover before directing her own feature debut, Sun Don't Shine in 2012. Amy went on to co-create and executive produce the critically acclaimed Starz series The Girlfriend Experience. In 2018, Amy directed two episodes of the acclaimed FX series Atlanta and subsequently signed a first look television production development deal with the network. But yes, she continued acting throughout that time as well, and you’ve seen her in Upstream Color, Alien: Covenant, The Killing, Stranger Things, Wild Nights with Emily, and Pet Sematary.

But the movie that Amy chose to discuss has nothing to do with any of that! She's chosen The Peanut Butter Solution, a Canadian children's movie from the eighties that most people thought they dreamed up. April and Amy dissect the crazy plot and how something this unconventional could be made for children. Amy discusses working on her debut Sun Don't Shine, collaborating with Hiro Murai and Donald Glover on Atlanta, and being directed by Madeleine Olnek on Wild Nights with Emily. Plus, they ponder the lessons on creative freedom that can be learned from children's films and how it's sometimes best to not think logically.

You can check out Pet Sematary and Wild Nights with Emily in theaters now.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch The Peanut Butter Solution.

With April Wolfe and Amy Seimetz.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

Switchblade Sisters Episode 76: 'Alien' with 'Little Woods' Director Nia DaCosta

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Guests: 
Nia DaCosta

Alien

To quote the Tribeca Film Festival, director Nia DaCosta is “a name you’re gonna need to get familiar with.” Nia DaCosta was born and raised in New York City and attended NYU’s Tisch. She started her film career paying her dues in production, on the documentary series, Ke$ha: My Crazy Beautiful Life, while also writing and directing shorts. In 2015, she took an early draft of her script for a film called Little Woods to the Sundance Directors Lab. There, she hooked up with Tessa Thompson, who read the part of a woman named Ollie, who’s caught in a poverty trap in rural North Dakota and must decide whether she’ll re-enter a life of crime to help her pregnant sister. Tessa Thompson continued with the project, and Nia then cast Lily James to play her sister. The film premiered in 2018 at the Tribeca Film Festival. Shortly after that, it was announced that Nia would be directing the “spiritual sequel” to Candyman off a script penned by Jordan Peele and Win Rosenfeld, which will be released by MGM.

The movie Nia has chosen to discuss is 1979's Alien. To quote Nia, "it's a perfect film." She and April discuss the revolutionary character of Ripley, played by Sigourney Weaver, and how the world had never seen someone like her before. Nia talks about working and collaborating with Tessa Thompson on her character in Little Woods. She elaborates on directing the upcoming Candyman and what she learned from Jordan Peele. Plus, Nia tells April how Tessa Thompson is excellent at acting with her hands, or as Nia calls it - "hacting."

You should check out Little Woods in theaters on April 19.

If you haven't seen it yet, go watch Alien.

With April Wolfe and Nia DaCosta.

You can let us know what you think of Switchblade Sisters on Twitter or Facebook.

Or email us at switchbladesisters@maximumfun.org.

Produced by Casey O'Brien and Laura Swisher for MaximumFun.org.

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