SFF RETURNING ALUM SPOTLIGHT: Exclusive Interview with SEE GIRL RUN director Nate Meyer!
|Robin Tunney & John Hamilton|
SFF is delighted to welcome back director Nate Meyer. His first feature, Pretty in the Face, played SFF in 2007 and won our Independent Vision Jury Prize. Nate also shared our critics award for Independent Vision with Craig Zobel for Great World of Sound. This year he brings us See Girl Run, which you can run out and see on Thursday, April 19th at 6:15pm or Sunday, April 22nd at 1:30pm. The film stars Robin Tunney (The Craft, The Mentalist), Adam Scott (Party Down, Parks and Recreation), Jeremy Strong (The Messenger, Robot and Frank) and one of my personal favorites, the always amazing William Sadler (Die Hard 2, Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey, The Mist).
See Girl Run tells the story of Emmie (Tunney), a woman who leaves her comfortable married life behind to find out what might have been with her High School sweetheart (Scott). It's a romantic journey of discovery set against a lovingly shot in southern Maine. I had the great pleasure of chatting with the director recently about his experiences.
INSIDER: How did the production come together? I see that David Gordon Green (who also produced this year’s Compliance) is one of your executive producers. Was he an early mentor on the project?
NATE MEYER: David Gordon Green (Pineapple Express, Eastbound & Down) and I have been good friends since our first year of film school together. One of the things I appreciate about him is that although he has made a name for himself with certain kinds of films, he actually has wide ranging tastes. See Girl Run is in many ways quite different from the movies he has directed yet he immediately responded to the screenplay and understands my filmmaking vision so he offered to help me get it made any way he could. Soon after reading it, he became an Executive Producer and has been an essential part of the process from the initial casting through where we are with it today.
INSIDER: You have a wonderful cast. Please tell us about your experiences with these fine actors.
|Director Nate Meyer|
NATE MEYER: The entire cast is quite remarkable and filled with actors I have long admired. Robin Tunney and Adam Scott are both examples of true pros who have done a ton of films and have a plethora of opportunities so it was an honor to have them as part of the team. I could mention Jeremy Strong, Josh Hamilton, Marylouise Burke and others but I'll share a quick story about Bill (William) Sadler. In casting, we read a couple dozen men for the role, many of whom are quite well known. The script selection was a key monologue near the end of the film. It's pretty wordy and specific and every single actor struggled with it in the auditions.
At one point, one of my producers commented that I might need to re-write it. I was always open to this as an absolute last resort but I felt the right actor could make it work and it might take more direction than the time I had for adjustments in casting. Ultimately, we couldn't settle on an actor for the role but at the insistence of our terrific casting director, Jessica Kelly, I had a phone call with Bill about the film and he said that the monologue was the reason he wanted to do the movie. I never saw him do it until the night we shot the scene and when it was over, it was clear that he made it work and it felt just right. Every day I worked with Bill he brought a curiosity and enthusiasm to his craft that was inspiring to everyone, especially coming from such a seasoned veteran.
INSIDER: What challenges did you face during the making of the film? What are some of your favorite memories from the making of See Girl Run?
NATE MEYER: About 85% of the film takes place in Maine. I had lived there from 2004-2006 in order to make my first low budget feature film Pretty in the Face. We shot the Brooklyn portion first for about a week. Everything about production in NYC is a pain, especially when you don't have tons of money and resources. Getting great crews to work for less money, securing affordable locations, parking for equipment trucks, everything! And non-film people are jaded because they are used to film production and often think of it as just an impediment in their day. And I don't blame them.
So once we arrived up in Maine for the bulk of our shoot, it was a real breath of fresh air. The community, which I had grown to love years ago, was unbelievably excited to have us and accommodated the production in many ways. They really worked their way into the fabric of our filmmaking and are key to the finished film itself. And because of the fact that the heart of the movie is really in Maine, there was an implicit coalescence between the unique environment and the rich, genuine story we were creating. There's just something about Maine that is unlike any other part of the country and I feel lucky to have had a chance to capture some of it.
THE INSIDER: Thanks, Nate!
Here is a look at Nate and his star Robin Tunney speaking about the film from SXSW. Enjoy!
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