Episode 14: Dirty Looks On Location – Bradford Nordeen, Bret Berg and Joe Rubin

 

I have spent almost all of July so far traveling around Los Angeles cradled in the bosom of a magical series of film screenings, happenings and events called Dirty Looks On Location.

Avant garde cinema and dancing at a Latinx drag bar near my house that I have passed by for 20+ years and always meant to go to but never did…until this month- oh hai, Plaza!  I finally made it to the adult theater that used to be The Pussycat on Santa Monica blvd, became the Tomkat and is now Studs (or Pussycat/Studs, TBH). I made friends at Silver Lake leather bar, The Eagle LA, as we watched an incredible Fred Halsted retrospective.

The day this is released, I think I’m going to Queer Karaoke in the valley at what used to be Moonshadows. GIRL, I’VE BEEN BUSY. The calendar might start to open up again in August…after I get some rest from July!!

I took a chance to talk with Dirty Looks founder Bradford Nordeen and two of the curators, Bret Berg and Joe Rubin. We had a great time (even if it was terribly hot in my living room). If you listen closely, my cat Wallach came in a few times expressing his severe disappointment that he couldn’t go to the Pussycat.

Links, pix & bios for these mindblowing guests below the podcast link as usual!

 

Bradford Nordeen is a curator and writer based in Los Angeles. The founder of Dirty Looks, Nordeen served as the Platinum Programmer for Outfest Los Angeles from 2013 – 2017 and guest curator for The Broad Museum’s inaugural public programs (2015 – 2017). He has organized exhibitions for Participant Inc, ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives, Rhode Island School of Design, Atelie397 (São Paulo), House of Vans, and the ICA Los Angeles, in addition to curating series and screenings for The Museum of Modern Art, The Kitchen, SFMOMA, The Hammer Museum, ICA Boston, the Film Society at Lincoln Center, Kurimanzutto, Judson Memorial Church and New York Live Arts. His publications include Check Your Vernacular (2014), Dirty Looks at MoMA (2013), Fever Pitch (2008), as well as editing the annual Dirty Looks Volume series.

As theatrical sales director for the Austin, TX-based American Genre Film Archive, Bret Berg works with movie theaters across the globe to bring forgotten / restored genre and arthouse classics back onto the big screen. And, as education director of The Voyager Institute, Bret collaborates with a wide variety of artists / thinkers on Voyager’s monthly free-admission lecture series about movies and music. Previous curatorial residencies include KXLU 88.9fm Los Angeles, Alamo Drafthouse, Cinefile Video and The Cinefamily.

If you are in the LA area, I highly recommend making a trip to check out Bret’s Voyager Institute work. For more on that, go here: https://www.facebook.com/voyagerla/

Joe Rubin is a film archivist, historian, and co-founder of the film distribution company, Vinegar Syndrome. His work has primarily focused on the restoration and preservation of US produced exploitation and hardcore feature films made between the 1960s and 1980s. He most recently contributed a chapter on preservation methods in ‘pornographic’ films to the collection Porno Chic & the Sex Wars, published by University of Massachusetts Press.

As many of you may be aware, Vinegar Syndrome is one of the best boutique DVD/Blu labels around and Joe is amazingly talented. Check their stuff out too.

Episode 13: Outfest Legacy Project Managers of Past & Present- Brendan Lucas, Taylor Morales & Alice Royer

Pride Month has been AMAZING.

To say that my guests have blown my mind would be an understatement.

If you haven’t gotten a chance to check out the episodes with Anne Kelly, Magnus Berg,  or T.J. Tallie, I highly recommend that you do so. I am terribly proud of the fact that I was able to document these incredible people who are making such a difference in our landscape and are such immense figures as far as the idea of Pride is concerned. I am personally proud to know them and call them friends and colleagues but I am inspired by their continued power and brilliance in a world and professional landscape that does not always welcome queerness.

Which leads me to this week and the Outfest Legacy Project. As a 2-time UCLA grad school alumna, one of the things that I love about that school is the preservation work they do on LGBTQ+ materials with Outfest. While I was in archiving school there, I really wanted to intern with them but that never happened. So next best thing: I go to the festival every year, I have volunteered with them and for the grand finale of Pride Month on Archivist’s Alley, I am welcoming three amazing colleagues on to speak about the Legacy Project, Outfest, their work and the film festival coming up in July.

I know I say this about every episode, but really- it’s a GREAT EPISODE. Check it out! Brendan, Taylor & Alice RULE!!!! Bios and pix below the episode link, as usual.

Bios:

Taylor Morales is the Production Art Librarian at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science’s Margaret Herrick Library where she manages and catalogs the Academy’s unique collection of production design drawings, costume design drawings, storyboards, and other artwork related to the motion picture industry. Taylor previously managed the Outfest UCLA Legacy Project for LGBT Film Preservation where she contributed to the restoration of her favorite film Desert Hearts (1985) in addition to preserving and screening many other archival queer films. She is now a proud member of the Legacy Project Advisory Council.

Here is a link to buy the Desert Hearts DVD and Bluray via Criterion:

https://www.criterion.com/films/29139-desert-hearts

Brendan Lucas attended UC Santa Barbara and the Moving Image Archive Studies Program at UCLA. He is currently the Legacy Project Manager for the Outfest UCLA Legacy Project, a joint effort between Outfest and the UCLA Film and Television Archive, where he supports the collection, documentation, preservation and exhibition of LGBTQ moving images. For the past 5 years, Brendan has worked at Deluxe Audio Services (formerly Chace Audio) where he has coordinated and written about audio restoration projects for film and television.
Born and raised in Northern California, he currently lives in Los Angeles, where he is always either interested in–or going to–events in and around his adoptive hometown.
Outfest LGBT Film Festival (July 12-22, 2018)
Outfest UCLA Legacy Project
Legacy Screening Series at the Billy Wilder Theater in Westwood (year-round)
Alice Royer is a film and media scholar, archivist, and programmer living in Los Angeles. She has very nearly completed her PhD in Cinema & Media Studies at UCLA, where she also earned an MA in Moving Image Archive Studies. Previously, Alice oversaw the Outfest UCLA Legacy Project as Legacy Project Manager from 2014-2016, during which time she was selected to serve on the Teddy Award Jury at the 2016 Berlin International Film Festival. She has been a longtime Assistant Programmer for Outfest, and has screened films for AFI FEST, and the Los Angeles Film Festival. And also she has a dog named Walter, whom she probably anthropomorphizes too much.
The following is a short featurette on the preservation of the 1919 silent film that she mentions having worked on during her tenure as Project Manager, Different From The Others (1919).

Episode 7: Millie De Chirico- Comin’ Up With That Weird Stuff! Exhibition as access, women in programming spaces, & the joy of TCMFF

This week is TCMFF, which in laymen’s terms means Turner Classic Movie Film Fest.

IT’S THE HAPPIEST TIME OF THE YEAR. LIKE FOR REELZ.

Well, at least it’s my happiest time. It’s what I affectionately call “Classic Film Summer Camp.” Even if it doesn’t happen during the summer time.

So in order to celebrate this wonderful and exciting event, I got one of the women that I love and admire in a massive way to be on this week’s episode.

Her name is Millie De Chirico and she continues to be one of the most amazing and dynamic forces at TCM.

This is her bio:

Millie De Chirico is 14-year member of the programming department at Turner Classic Movies. She co-created TCM Underground, the channel’s late night cult movie franchise and now lends her programming expertise to FilmStruck, the new streaming service created by TCM and the Criterion Collection. In her spare time she co-hosts a podcast with comedian April Richardson called Sordid Details (sordidpodcast.com).

TCM Underground, if you are not aware, is a masterpiece and an accomplishment unto itself, let alone the gazillions of other things that Millie does daily.

One of the big myths in the film world is that “the ladies” can’t stomach grindhouse films or that we just don’t like that sexploitation/exploitation morally messy media. It goes without saying that there is a certain unspoken idea that most fans of the genre would not be queer or POC either. But we exist. Millie’s dedication to TCM Underground and her passion for this landscape is important on many levels. If you listen to our conversation we discuss this.  This has led to her programming the midnight movies at the TCMFF which is nothing but brilliant.

I CANNOT WAIT FOR THIS YEAR’S FESTIVAL!

We talk about a lot of things in this episode. One of the things that we get super Real Deal about is the state of film exhibition and the theater scene. The last few years has seen some upheaval but it’s gotten a little quiet.  Like everyone thinks what happened at Cinefamily, Fantastic Fest, etc, was a one-off and that we can all go forward as things were, la la la la.
But we (being marginalized folx) weren’t happy before the Dude-programmer-pocalpyse and we certainly aren’t pleased now. And the situation is pretty easy to fix. Really. It is. We talk about that here too.

I’m not gonna lie: this is a GREAT EPISODE. But it was great because Millie is a damn ROCKSTAR. 

So here’s the million dollar answer, of course. You want to know what Millie’s top pics for TCMFF are and (maybe) mine. So, look below! They do not disappoint. And if you’re going to TCMFF, hope to see you there. Say hello!

Millie De Chirico’s 2018 TCMFF Recommendations

WORLD’S GREATEST SINNER (1962, d. Timothy Carey, 82m, Digital) (duh!)
A STAR IS BORN (1937, d. William A. Wellman, 35mm) on nitrate
FINISHING SCHOOL (1934, d. George Nichols, Jr. and Wanda Tuchock, 35 mm)**Preserved by the Library of Congress.
OUTRAGE (1950, d. Ida Lupino, 35mm) Ida!
WILL SUCCESS SPOIL ROCK HUNTER (1957, d. Frank Tashlin, Digital) Jayne!

My list is a little different. These are some of the films that I will probably end up going to. But these are also ones that I am VERY EXCITED ABOUT!!

In no particular order….

FINISHING SCHOOL (1934, d. George Nichols, Jr. and Wanda Tuchock, 35 mm) **Preserved by the Library of Congress.
WORLD’S GREATEST SINNER (1962, d. Timothy Carey, 82m, Digital)
STAGE DOOR (1937, d. Gregory La Cava, 35mm) nitrate & has a Bill Morrison short called The Letter playing before it!!!! YES!!
HATFUL OF RAIN (1957, d. Fred Zinnemann, Digital)
A LETTER TO THREE WIVES (1949, d. Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Digital)
WHEN YOU READ THIS LETTER (1953, d. Jean-Pierre Melville, Digital)
Panel Discussion- Through a Lens of Color: Black Representation in Film featuring: Gil Robertson IV, of the African American Film Critics Association, Professor Jacqueline Stewart, filmmaker Mario Van Peebles and moderated by Donald Bogle.
GIRLS ABOUT TOWN (1931, d. George Cukor, 35mm)
Hollywood Home Movies: Treasures from the Academy Archive
The Academy Film Archive shares gems from its collection with specially-selected home movies from Hollywood’s Golden Age, Presented by Randy Haberkamp, Managing Director of Preservation and Foundation Programs for AMPAS, and Lynne Kirste, Special Collections Curator at the Archive.
WOMAN OF THE YEAR (1942, d. George Stevens, Digital)