This film a remarkable insight into Hollywood and film making. No glitz, glamour or incessant sales-pitch spin here. Just long hours and endless struggles with the studio system. The film follows director Stephan Elliot during the making of EYE OF THE BEHOLDER (A fairly successful film that was generally considered to be mediocre at best; and I should add that I haven't seen it at the time of this post). After the massive world wide success of THE ADVENTURES OF PRISCILLA: QUEEN OF THE DESERT, Elliot's follow up, WELCOME TO WOOP WOOP, practically got him thrown out of the business. EYE had to be a success. With the casting coup of Ewan McGregor and Ashley Judd, both on the cusp of superstardom, as leads in a psycho-sexual thriller there was little chance it would fail. But strangely the studio doesn't seem to care. In fact, as this film tells it, every obstacle to its release is put up.
This documentary shows us the movie business unadorned; the endless drafting, the constant lying and stroking of egos, the fact that a budget of 30mil only gives you about 8mil to work with after everyone down the line has skimmed a little. Watch as Stephan's vision and adaptation of the book are butchered, his set pieces are cut, the money dries up and the finished product (after many re-cuts) is left on the shelf for eighteen months and all but forgotten. This film is offputting but would make great preparation for anyone wanting to enter the business and anyone who ever dreamt of making movies.
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