From the Vaults: David Gordon Green
Highlights of our coverage of the filmmaker since 2001
By Marjorie Baumgarten,
4:10PM, Fri. Aug. 16, 2013
David Gordon Green is one of the most industrious filmmakers in America. Since the release of his first feature, George Washington, in 2001, Green has directed eight more films, as well as producing and/or directing an impressive array of television projects. Prince Avalanche, his eighth film, opens today in Austin at the Violet Crown Cinema.
Filmed in the Bastrop area, Prince Avalanche finds inspiration in the burned acreage that was scorched so tragically in the wildfires of two summers ago. Using the charred landscape for its setting, the movie stars Paul Rudd and Emil Hirsch, with Rudd atypically taking more of a comic back seat and playing straight man to Hirsch's character. Green's ninth film, Joe, which was also filmed in the Austin area, is already in the can and will be debuting in upcoming weeks at the Venice and Toronto Film Festivals. Prince Avalanche is scheduled to open in more venues next Friday, and is also currently available for streaming via several VOD outlets. Dan Solomon talks with Green in "A 'Prince' Among Men" in our current issue.
At the Chronicle, we've reviewed all of Green's films and provide some links below. We've also interviewed the Richardson, Texas, native a few times, especially about his training at the North Carolina School of the Arts and some of the longtime collaborators he was introduced to there – among them directors Jeff Nichols (Mud) and Jody Hill (Observe and Report), actor Danny McBride (Eastbound & Down, on which Green served as a writer and producer), cinematographer Tim Orr, and several others. A few years ago, Green settled in Austin, and he seems to have become one of those filmmakers who can simultaneously straddle the worlds of Hollywood (Pineapple Express, The Sitter) and independent filmmaking.
Back when George Washington came out, Green was gaining a reputation for giving prickly interviews in which he spoke frankly about the shortcomings of other filmmakers. In particular, there was an interview he gave to Kimberley Jones in which he denigrated the talents of Kevin Smith by stating: "He kind of created a Special Olympics for film." You can read the rest of the 2001 interview in "Fighting Words."