Thursday, 6 December, 2012
The insightful, fun, and sometimes deadly serious documentary Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry (艾未未：道歉你妹; title in Taiwan 艾未未：草泥馬) has been Oscar shortlisted from 126 films down to 15, coming out ahead of films like “The Central Park Five” by the legendary Ken Burns et al, and “Head Games” by Steve James (director of the amazing Hoop Dreams).
Alison Klayman, director of Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, was very nice and cool to do her first post-Oscar-shortlist video interview with me on the day after she came back from a Bangkok film festival trip. Here is my video interview with Alison.
Video interview with Oscar Shortlisted Alison Klayman, director of Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry
Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry trailer (Official selection Sundance 2012 Film Festival)
I just noticed on the back wall in the following film still, the pictures are the concept drawings that lead to the Remembering (2009), an installation for the Façade of the House of German Art.
Alison and I talked about the middle finger salute in the interview. To me, it is a show of defiance to the powerful, be it the one-party ruled Chinese government or any other governments or powerful institutions.
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Thursday, 16 February, 2012
Excellent series of four film talks (video) with Werner Herzog, Alison Klayman, Angelina Jolie, Keanu Reeves at Berlin International Film Festival 2012. Some of these talks have funny moments and all of them are deeply insight. The interviews with Angelina Jolie and Keanu Reeves are NOT your typical Hollywood 30 seconds red carpet highlights. All of these film talks are great for people who love interviews! Enjoy.
*** My takes of these four talks **
* Werner is one of the best doc filmmakers in the world. Very insightful talk. On Death Row reviewed by Hollywood Reporter and IndieWire.
* Alison‘s talk adds a lot of the context and behind the scene stories. Great talk again. Here are some reviews.
* Angelina‘s chat with the interviewer (also a film director herself) is amazingly insightful to watch. For those that can only see Angelina as a sexy and attractive star, you are in for a pleasant surprise. Reviews from UK Guardian and Hollywood Reporter.
* Keanu and the film director’s chat with interviewer is very insightful and fun to watch. Here is Hollywood Reporter’s review of the documentary Side by Side.
Monday, 23 January, 2012
* LA Times (great review), “Sundance 2012: Ai Weiwei screening becomes a political event”
“In one of the film’s numerous scenes of defiance, Ai describes his motivation for his art and his statements. “If you don’t publicize it, it’s like it never happened,” he said.”
* Chicago Tribune, “Another side of Ai Weiwei shown in Sundance film”
* New York Times, Alison Klayman (with video), “Ai Weiwei: The Evolution of a Dissident”
* Reuters, “Another side of Ai Weiwei shown in Sundance film”
* WSJ, “Ten Hot Sundance Documentaries to Watch”
* Salt Lake Tribune, “Sundance review: “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry”
Jan 29, 2012 update: THR, “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry: Sundance Film Review”
Variety review, “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry”
Wired.com, “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry Documents Artist’s Social Media Dissent”
Feb 14, 2012 update: The Guardian, “Berlin 2012: Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry – review”
Here is an Ai Weiwei quote I love,
“Q: Do you ever examine yourself to say, why is that you are so fearless compared to other people?
Ai WeiWei Answer: I was so fearful, that’s not fearless. I am more fearful than other people, may be, then I act more brave because I know the danger is really there. If you don’t act, the dangers become stronger.” – Ai WeiWeiin PBS Frontline video “Who is afraid of Ai Weiwei?” (time code: ~17:25)
Monday, 16 May, 2011
Alison Klayman, documentary filmmaker of “Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry”appears on The Colbert Report TONIGHT (May 16th, 2011)! Watch it.
THR has a good report of Alison’s appearance, “Ai Weiwei Documentary Maker to Appear on ‘The Colbert Report’“.
“Citing the artist’s wife, the Associated Press reported Monday that Ai appeared healthy but tense during his first meeting with family since he was detained more than a month ago.
Ai’s wife Lu Qing told the AP she was allowed to meet with her husband at an unknown location for around 20 minutes Sunday afternoon and that he seemed conflicted and upset, although insisted he was healthy and his physical needs were being met.”