IMDb > My Kid Could Paint That (2007)
My Kid Could Paint That
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My Kid Could Paint That (2007) More at IMDbPro »

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My Kid Could Paint That -- A toddler's flair for abstract art makes her an  overnight celebrity--until a T.V. exposé points  an accusatory finger at her father.
My Kid Could Paint That -- A look at the work and surprising success of a four-year-old girl whose paintings have been compared to the likes of Picasso and has raked in hundreds of thousands of dollars.


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Release Date:
18 October 2007 (Australia) See more »
Inspiration or Manipulation? You Decide.
A look at the work and surprising success of a four-year-old girl whose paintings have been compared to the likes of Picasso and has raked in hundreds of thousands of dollars. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
1 win & 5 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Extremely Thought-Provoking (Plus My Two Cents) See more (27 total) »



Amir Bar-Lev ... Himself
Anthony Brunelli ... Himself
Elizabeth Cohen ... Herself
Jonathan Crosby ... (voice)
Ron Curtis Jr. ... (voice)
Michael Kimmelman ... Himself
Laura Olmstead ... Herself
Mark Olmstead ... Himself
Marla Olmstead ... Herself
Zane Olmstead ... Himself

Celeste Russi ... (voice)

Tara Sands ... (voice)
Stuart Simpson ... Himself
Jackie Wescott ... Herself

Directed by
Amir Bar-Lev 
Produced by
Amir Bar-Lev .... producer
John Battsek .... executive producer
Stephen Dunn .... co-producer
Richard Klein .... executive producer: BBC
Sara Nolan .... associate producer
Andrew Ruhemann .... co-executive producer
Original Music by
Rondo Brothers 
Cinematography by
Matt Boyd (director of photography)
Nelson Hume 
Bill Turnley 
Film Editing by
Michael Levine 
John W. Walter  (as John Walter)
Production Management
Christopher Kenneally .... post-production supervisor
Sound Department
Ryan Carroll .... sound recordist
Mark Garcia .... adr mixer
Marlena Grzaslewicz .... supervising sound editor: 701 Sound
Eric Offin .... sound re-recording mixer
Paul Sacco .... dolby sound consultant
Ira Spiegel .... sound effects editor: 701 Sound
Ryan Zappin .... sound
Camera and Electrical Department
Amir Bar-Lev .... additional camera operator
Bryan Donnell .... additional camera operator
Guy Fiorita .... additional camera operator
Jason Lelchuk .... additional camera operator
Rachel Libert .... additional camera operator
Jenna Rosher .... additional camera operator
Jenna Rosher .... camera operator
Laleh Soomekh .... additional camera operator
John W. Walter .... additional camera operator (as John Walter)
Dan Zappin .... additional camera operator
Animation Department
Anthony Kraus .... animator: Noisy Neighbor Productions
Stefan Nadelman .... animator: Tourist Pictures
Editorial Department
Anne Alvergue .... additional editor
Tricia Chiarenza .... color timer
Will Cox .... on-line editor: Final Frame
Penelope Falk .... additional editor
Liam Lawyer .... additional editor
Aaron Lubarsky .... additional editor
Sandy Patch .... assistant on-line editor
Gabriel Rhodes .... additional editor
Trevor Ristow .... additional editor
Music Department
Jeff Daniel .... music supervisor: Rock River Music
Mariusz Glabinski .... music editor
Jeff Booth Diamond Ring .... music licensing: Rock River Music (as Jeff Diamond)
Jeff Booth Diamond Ring .... music supervisor: Rock River Music (as Jeff Diamond)
Other crew
Jessica Berman Bogdan .... clearances (as Jessica Berman-Bogdan)
Jessica Berman Bogdan .... researcher (as Jessica Berman-Bogdan)
Paul Brennan .... legal services: Sloss Law Office
Peter Broderick .... consultant
Jonathan Crosby .... consultant
Carl Deal .... archival consultant
Winston Emano .... publicist
Craig A. Emanuel .... legal services: Loeb & Loeb (as Craig Emanuel)
David Fox .... legal services (as David Fox Esq.)
Steven Gravatt .... production intern
Jo Haslam .... production intern
Peter Jaszi .... legal services
Noah Kistler .... production intern
Julia Landau .... production intern
Melanie Vi Levy .... production intern (as Melanie Levy)
David Magdael .... publicist
Holly Cara Price .... clearances
Holly Cara Price .... researcher
Benjamin Rutkowski .... production intern
Steve C. Schechter .... legal services (as Steven C. Schechter)
Tina Shaerban .... production intern
Emi Takahara .... production intern
Stephen Trapp .... production intern
Anne Stulz .... publicist (uncredited)

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Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG-13 for language
82 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Michael Kimmelman:All writers, all storytellers, are imposing their own narrative on something. I mean, all art in some ways is a lie. It looks like a picture of something, but it isn't that thing, it's a representation of that thing... Your documentary is itself going to be a lie...See more »
Movie Connections:
Man With the Movie CameraSee more »


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40 out of 42 people found the following review useful.
Extremely Thought-Provoking (Plus My Two Cents), 5 March 2008
Author: ccthemovieman-1 from United States

This documentary is outstanding in its capacity to make the viewer think. I'm sorry there are so few reviews of this here at IMDb because I would truly be interested in reading what other people have to say about this film. This is one of those stories, almost like a mystery, where you are left deciding on your own questions like "was this the real deal or was/is this a sham?" and "did this little girl do the paintings all my herself or did her dad embellish them?"

In 2004, four-year-old Marla Olmstead of Binghamton, New York, took the art world by storm. After an article by a Binghamton reporter, the New York Times picked up on it and, before you knew it, the little kid was a big celebrity. Her pieces were being sold for big bucks with much bigger profits on the way. Then, 60 Minutes did an expose raising doubts about whether she was on her own in this artwork. She went from child star to fraud, but then climbed back. All of this - and more - is documented on film by another guy, Amir Bar-Lev, who spent thousands of hours inside the Olmstead house interviewing and photographing the family. They hoped and assumed he'd be on their side, vindicating their daughter and themselves.

For those who found this story fascinating, I cannot recommend enough that you also watch the 35-minute behind-the-scenes bonus feature on the DVD called "Back To Binghamton." It was done last year, a few years after all the controversy. If you didn't have enough opinions after watching the main feature, you will after watching this "extra." It is extremely enlightening.

As a fellow reviewer, "tkelly-20" did here, I am going to add my "two cents." In a nutshell, here's how I viewed these people.

THE REPORTER - The only totally honest and common-sense person, perhaps, in the whole story is Elizabeth Cohen. As she states, this is a story about adults, not the child artist. She regrets ever doing the story and beginning the whole mess. I don't blame her.

THE PARENTS- If ever I've seen a person guilty on looks and body language alone, it has to be Marla's father, "Mark," who comes across as very shifty and as believable as a used car salesman. This guy, who is still bitter over the fact he never got his glory as a pro quarterback in the NFL, apparently will gladly take fame through his daughter. There is enough "evidence" here that he "polished" her artwork. The only legitimate defense he has is that the kid - who is honest like all real youngsters - hasn't said her daddy finished some of the paintings. Then again, the filmmaker didn't have the nerve, or thought it was inappropriate, to ask her.

Marla's mother, meanwhile, comes across as more sincere and innocent.....but she isn't. I think she knows what's going on but, perhaps, is caught in the middle, covering for her husband trying to protect her daughter. The most telling thing about her was in the bonus feature when she quickly withdrew her hand when her husband was going to hold it. She wants nothing to do with this guy - that's obvious. This marriage looks like a business arrangement all the way with greed and lust for fame empowering both of these parents. The both say they don't like all this publicity but they keep allowing themselves and their two little kids to be filmed day and night! They obviously relish this limelight, and it's disgusting. (I hope I'm wrong about this. I want to believe this family.)

THE ART WORLD - Gullible, pretentious and extremely prideful - that describes most of the "art people" in here, particularly art dealer Tony Brunelli. He, and others, have a pride problem in that they don't want to admit the Olmstead family has duped them from the start. Only one artist that I recall, another lady from Binghamton, who was shown on the bonus feature, told it straight and direct that she didn't believe any of this was legit. The worst pompous ass was - no surprise - the local college professor, who literally sounded insane. The world of art, unfortunately, is filled with phonies who will foist anything on the public if they can make a buck. At the same time, they will look you in the eye and honestly tell you something is "art," like the neon sign in this movie that just has the words - "F--k" on it. That's "art," to these people. Sad that little Marla is exposed to this kind of thing.

THE PRODUCER & DIRECTOR - Like all of us, it's obvious Bar-Lev wanted to believe this family but the more he filmed and the more he interviewed, the more suspect this whole thing was, and at least he had the guts to tell the Olmstead parents his feelings at the end. They wanted a PR piece and now are upset at him. They shouldn't be; they should be grateful he didn't include a lot of things I saw in the out-takes, which really make them look like con men.

Overall, this is a very disturbing story and one which invites a lot of discussion. In that respect, Bar-Lev is to be congratulated for making a movie which has so much impact and room for debate.

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