From Indie Films to Directing a Hollywood Icon with Adam Rifkin
Today’s guest is Adam Rifkin. Adam Rifkin is a Writer/Director whose eclectic career ranges from family comedies to thought-provoking indies to cult classics.
Most recently, Rifkin Wrote and Directed THE LAST MOVIE STAR, a poignant drama starring screen legend, Burt Reynolds, Ariel Winter and Chevy Chase. The critically acclaimed film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival where it was bought by A24 and is set to be released in March 3o, 2018 in theaters, all streaming platforms and DIRECTV.
Rifkin also Directed DIRECTOR’S CUT, a wild and twisted meta-thriller penned by iconic illusionist and comedian, Penn Jillette of Penn & Teller. DIRECTOR’S CUT was the opening night film of the 2016 Slamdance Film Festival and will be released by Epic Pictures under their new, DREAD CENTRAL PRESENTS, horror banner.
Additionally, Rifkin Directed GIUSEPPE MAKES A MOVIE, an outrageous yet touching documentary about trailer park filmmaker Giuseppe Andrews and the misfit family of homeless people he’s assembled to perform in all of his bizarre yet heartfelt movies. GIUSEPPE MAKES A MOVIE currently holds a coveted 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Previously, Rifkin Wrote and Directed the award-winning film LOOK, a controversial drama that takes us into the foreboding world of surveillance and explores the conceit that the average American is captured on camera at least 300 times a day. Adam also Executive Produced, Wrote and Directed LOOK: The Series for Showtime. The stand-alone 11 episode limited series enjoyed the highest ratings in its time slot in Showtime’s history.
Rifkin earned cult status when his film THE DARK BACKWARD, an oddball fairytale about a stand-up comic who grows a 3rd arm, starring Bill Paxton, Wayne Newton, Judd Nelson, Rob Lowe, James Caan and Lara Flynn Blyle, was named one of the top ten films of the year by The New York Post. He would then be immortalized as the Director responsible for New Line Cinema’s DETROIT ROCK CITY, a bona fide cult classic about 4 teens in 1978 who go on an Arthurian quest for KISS tickets. DETROIT ROCK CITY continues to speak to and inspire generations of rock fans around the world.
An A-list screenwriter, Rifkin has a penchant for family fare. He wrote UNDERDOG for Walt Disney Studios, a tent pole comedy based on the iconic 1960’s cartoon show, ZOOM, starring Tim Allen and two hits for DreamWorks, MOUSEHUNT, and SMALL SOLDIERS. His next foray into family entertainment will be PEEPS, a Lego Movie-esque animated feature he’ll write and produce based on the icon PEEPS candies.
We discuss how he jumped from screenwriter to director, how to handle a problematic actor on set and what it was like directing an icon.
Enjoy my conversation with Adam Rifkin.
LINKS AND RESOURCES MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
- BlackBox – Make Passive Income From Your Footage
- Studio Unknown Audio Post – Mention the IFH podcast, and you’ll receive 50% off one day of ADR
- Filmmaker in a Box – Learn How to Make an Indie Film – 18 Hours+ of Lessons
- Martin Scorsese Film Directing Masterclass
- Ron Howard Film Directing Masterclass
- Judd Apatow Comedy Writing/Directing Masterclass
- Aaron Sorkin Screenwriting Master Class
- FreeFilmBook.com (Download Your FREE Filmmaking Audio Book)
- IFH MASTERS CIRCLE – Filmmaking Community
- IFH’s Online Film School
- Six Secrets to get into Film Festivals for FREE!
BONUS: Filmmaking Resources
- Martin Scorsese’s Film Directing MasterClass
- Ron Howard’s Film Directing MasterClass
- Filmmaking Hacks: Filmmaking Master Course
- Directing Actors Film Workshop
- USC Film School’s ONLY Online Course: Directing the Actor
- Film Lighting MasterClass
- Recording Sound for Indie Film
- The Art of Micro-Budget Filmmaking
- Cinematography MasterClass
- Film Festival Hacks: Submit Like a Pro
- Self-Distributing Your Film Online
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