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Sundance '05 Interview: 'Love, Ludlow' Writer/Producer David L. Paterson

by Scott Weinberg

The "Love, Ludlow" Pitch: With a gleeful wink to a more innocent cinematic era and classic 1950s romantic comedies, Love, Ludlow invites us into a crisply constructed, smartly stylized universe that exists almost outside of time, filled with delightful anachronisms like typewriters, hair rollers, "gentlemen callers," and characters who say things like "he's a card." Within this constantly surprising and charming world lives Myra--a tough, straight-talking temp from Queens, played by the lovable, husky-voiced character actress, Alicia Goranson. At the office Myra takes no guff; but at home life is dominated by her eccentric, unstable younger brother, Ludlow, who occupies a fantasy world inside their tiny flat and depends on her for his every need. When Reggie, a sweetly nebbishy "suit" from work takes a shine to her, Myra slowly lets down her guard and cautiously attempts to carve out a life of her own. But a deeply threatened Ludlow throws up serious roadblocks, and she must tread a thorny path if she is to salvage happiness.

"It's a story about love and possibilities."

Will this be your first time at Sundance? If not, what else have you been to Park City with?
First time to Sundance - First film festival ever.

When you were 14 years old, if someone asked you what you wanted to be when you grew up, what would your answer have been?
An actor.

How did you get started in filmmaking?
Pure desperation. I had hoped somebody else would've made me famous by now, but nobody did, so I leveraged my life, adapted one of my plays, and shot it as a movie.

How have things changed for you since your film was accepted into the festival?
My wife has stopped talking to me and she confiscated the credit cards. Other than that, not much, yet.

When you were shooting the film, did you have Sundance (or film festivals in general) in mind?
Sundance was my Everest. I was hoping to make it to at least the base camp. (Passaic Film Festival in N.J.)

How did you get your film started? How did you go from script to finished product?
I adapted one of my plays, which started out as a three-person, single-set play. In the end the film had fifteen speaking roles, about fifty extras and twenty locations. (A sizable increase, both logistically and financially.)

What’s the one glaring lesson you learned while making this film?
Everybody breaks stuff. Very few actually admit to it.

When you were in pre-production, did you find yourself watching other great movies in preparation?
The Muppets take Manhattan, Xanadu and The Boy in the Plastic Bubble.

If a studio said ‘we love this, we love you, you can remake anything in our back catalogue for $40m’ – what film, if any, would you want to remake?
That's a tough one... I'd like a shot at Lifeboat, by Hitchcock.

Two parter – name an actor you'd KILL to work with, and then name an actor in your own film that you really think is destined for great things.
- Dustin Hoffman. Maybe not kill - but I definitely could hobble somebody for the chance.
- Alicia Goranson has many great performances ahead of her.

The festival circuit: what could be improved? What's been your favorite part of the ride?
1. Acknowledging the writers and producers if they are not the same as the director (i.e. passes and tickets should be split amongst them.)
2. Getting 4Imprint, Coors Light and Twinkies to sponsor me.

Have you ‘made it’ yet? If not, at what point will you be able to say ‘yes’?
- When I can stop hiding from VISA, Mastercard and American Express.
- When an agent will actually return a phone call.

A film is made by many people, including the director (of course), but you'll often see movies that open with a credit that says “a film by…” – Did you use that credit in your film? If so, defend yourself! If not, what do you think of those who do?
No. As you say, a film is made by many. If it was written by, directed by, and produced by the same individual than there's no question it is a film "by" that person. But if not, it's a bit pretentious to take all the credit.


Love, Ludlow, starring Alicia Goranson, David Eigenberg & Brendan Sexton III, will premiere January 27th, 2005 at the Sundance Film Festival. Click here for more information.

link directly to this feature at https://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/feature.php?feature=1295
originally posted: 01/11/05 16:57:29
last updated: 01/15/05 11:07:04
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