Tag Archives: Frederick Wiseman


I know a lot about alienation… I think all women filmmakers are aware of it. It was the subject of a lot of the conversations I had with Maya Deren. We agreed that we were always going to present a united front to the world…

I would not have been able to make THE COOL WORLD had I not been living with Carl Lee at that time. It took Carl three months of going up to Harlem all the time, gathering kids, and bringing them down for us to interview… The “good” kids in school weren’t giving us believable readings… I finally persuaded Carl to try to get to the gangs, [and] it was very exciting because the “real” kids started improvising the script we had written right back to us.Shirley Clarke

As part of the UCLA Film and Television Archive series American Neorealism, Part One—1948–1984, Clarke’s THE COOL WORLD will screen at the Billy Wilder Theater, Hammer Museum this weekend on a double bill with Michael Roemer’s Nothing But a Man.

Frederick Wiseman produced THE COOL WORLD, and the jazz score is by Mal Waldron, with Dizzy Gillespie on the soundtrack.


Saturday, January 18, at 7:30 pm.

Billy Wilder Theater—Hammer Museum

10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles.

Shirley Clarke, The Cool World (1964). Film stills and (above) photographs of Clarke on set and with composer Mal Waldron. Images courtesy the filmmaker’s estate, the actors, the producers, and the distributors.


“I like to think I know what works for me… I’ve learned to be quite hard on the material… Editing is always a manic-depressive special—moments when you overestimate what you have and moments when you underestimate, but neither is usually true.” — Frederick Wiseman*

Wiseman—one of our greatest documentarians—will talk about his new film MONROVIA, INDIANA this week at the 56th New York Film Festival.

The following weekend Wiseman will join Richard Brody (author of Cinema is Everything: The Working Life of Jean-Luc Godard) in conversation at The New Yorker Festival.


Sunday, September 30, at noon.

Walter Reade Theater, 165 West 65th Street, New York City.

Monday, October 1, at 6:30 pm.

Howard Gilman Theater, 144 West 65th Street, New York City.



Monday, October 1, at 7 pm.

Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center Amphitheater, 144 West 65th Street, New York City.



Saturday, October 6, at 10 am.

SVA Theatre, 333 West 23rd Street, New York City.

*Paris Review interview

Frederick Wiseman. Photograph by Corbin Smith.


The 21st annual COLCOA FRENCH FILM FESTIVAL is here, presenting nine days of premieres at the Directors Guild Theater in Hollywood. Some highlights from the first few days of the fest:

L’OPÉRA—a documentary about the Paris Opera directed by Jean-Stéphane Bron, and a worthy complement to Frederick Wiseman’s La Danse (2009)—screens Tuesday evening, April 25 at 5 pm.

Later that night, rustic farceur Bruno Dumont screens his new satire SLACK BAY / MA LOUTE. Tuesday, April 25 at 7:30 pm.

Lambert Wilson, Audrey Tautou, and Pierre Niney headline L’ODYSSÉE, a biopic of adventurer and filmmaker Jacques Cousteau. Directed by Jérôme SalleL’ODYSSÉE screens on Wednesday night, April 26 at 8:30 pm. (Wilson will participate in a post-screening Q & A.)

Director Stéphane Brizé—known for contemporary dramas starring Vincent Lindon—takes on Guy de Maupassant in the trenchant period piece A WOMAN’S LIFE / UNE VIE, starring Judith Chemla, and screening Thursday evening, April 27 at 7:25 pm. (Brizé will attend.)

Also Thursday, Pierre Deladonchamps stars in A KID / LE FILS DE JEANan examination of paternity and identity directed by Philippe Lioret, who is in town for the festival.

POLINA—directed by Valérie Müller and choreographer Angelin Preljocaj—takes wing once its eponymous protagonist leaves the Bolshoi (and Moscow) for France. But the lessons learned at the dance academy in Aix are only the beginning of Polina’s European education.

Starring Mariinsky dancer Anastasia ShevtsovaNiels Schneider, dancer-choreographer Jérémie Bélingard, Preljocaj star Sergio Diaz, and Juliette Binoche (who has danced for Akram Khan), POLINA screens on Friday evening, April 28 at 5:45 pm.


Through May 2.

Directors Guild

7920 Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood.

From top:

Scene from L’Opéra.

Judith Chelma in Un vie.

Pierre Deladonchamps and Gabriel Arcand in Le fils de Jean.

Anastasia Shevtsova in Polina.

Audrey Tautou in L’Odyssey.