“The sexy Howl brings 1950s poetry to life” – Lawrence Ferber interviews Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman

“The sexy Howl brings 1950s poetry to life” – Watermarks Lawrence Ferber interviews Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman.(directors of the recently-released Howl movie)

Lawrence Ferber writes – “One of the year’s most buzzed-about gay titles is Howl, in which award-winning documentary filmmakers Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman (Paragraph 175, The Celluloid Closet) bring “Beat Generation” poet Allen Ginsberg’s landmark 1955 poem to life… Employing a triptych structure and superb name cast, the directors weave several strands together: scenes from Ginsberg’s youthful years (and relationships with fellow Beats Jack Kerouac and Peter Orlovsky), recreations of the 1957 obscenity trial against the published poem (utilizing actual court transcripts), and a gorgeously animated interpretation of “Howl” designed by erstwhile Ginsberg collaborator Eric Drooker..”

[Jeffrey Friedman and Rob Epstein]

Rob Epstein: There were people who told us point blank you’re setting out to do the impossible. It can’t be done. And they may still feel that way after seeing the film but I guess that was the challenge that most excited us. To figure out ways to make this into cinema.

Jeffrey Friedman: The Ginsberg estate asked us to make a movie about this poem, and every development, as it metamorphosed from a documentary into the hybrid it became, they were completely supportive of and gave us great encouragement. And the fact Allen had collaborated with Eric Drooker as an illustrator said to us he was open to other people giving visual interpretation to his work.

Read the interview with Ferber in its entirety – here 

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