Friday, February 17, 2012

Selling Sex at 70: An Interview with “Meet the Fokkens” co-directors Gabriëlle Provaas and Rob Schröder

As the world’s largest doc fest the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam is jam-packed with nonfiction gems from around the globe. Yet one of my most delightful and surprising finds at the 24th edition this past November was a small film from the heart of the host city itself. “Meet the Fokkens” is a nuanced portrait and loving celebration of 70-year-old twins Martine and Louise Fokken, two vivacious ladies of the night who’ve been selling sex in Amsterdam’s infamous red light district since 1961 (though Louise, suffering from arthritis, is now retired). Prior to the latest “Meet the Fokkens” screening at February’s Berlinale, I spoke with the doc’s Dutch co-directors, who gave me the scoop on many-splendored things, including Martine’s green fingers, corruption in the red light district, and the history of older professionals in the oldest profession in the world.

To read my interview visit Global Comment.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Kirsten Sheridan and The Factory: Assembling Ireland’s Actors

Talk to Kirsten Sheridan, director of “August Rush” and her latest “Dollhouse” (premiering in the Panorama section of the 2012 Berlinale) about The Factory, the collective she co-founded with fellow filmmakers John Carney (“Once”) and Lance Daly (“Kisses”), and it soon becomes apparent that Ireland’s recent financial woes have done little to dampen Dublin’s DIY spirit. If anything the collapse has, ironically, helped artists, Sheridan theorizes, by making their outsized dreams affordable. Indeed, in a thriving economy just meeting the rent on a space big enough to house everything from production studios, to a fully equipped camera department and editing facilities, to a digital cinema and a recording studio, would leave no time for these Factory friends to actually collectively create.

To read the rest visit Filmmaker magazine.