Tuesday, May 15, 2012

PTA Joins Robert Downey Sr. In Conversation For The Criterion Collection

Sometimes when it rains, it pours. After quite an eventful morning that saw Mr. FortyFPS and myself awake at 3:20am to decipher the cryptic email from Paul, we've been passed another little jewel. According to a post on The Criterion Collection Facebook page, PTA shot a series of videos with Robert Downey Sr. which they'll be unveiling in the coming weeks.

For those of you who don't know Robert Downey Sr. is (yes, Jr.'s father and also) the writer and director of a some truly bizarre and wonderful films including the satire "Putney Swope" which has long been a favorite of PTA's. (Fun fact: Buck Swope from "Boogie Nights" was named as a nod to the film!) Paul said the film showed him “you could be really punk rock in a movie. You could do anything. It didn’t have to make sense. As long as it was funny or funny to the guy who was making it, it would come across as exciting.” This video series is presumably to help promote Criterion's upcoming 5 film set of Downey's work entitled Up All Night with Robert Downey Sr. We'll keep our eyes peeled for those videos and post them here as they arrive as I'm sure our eagle-eyed readers will be the first to let us know. (Thanks @HybridVigorFilm!)  

Update 5/17: You can now watch the first video below:


Update 5/16:
  During a completely unrelated
Downey Sr. interview with the Projection Booth podcast (about the 38 minute mark), the subject of PTA came up when he was asked about filmmakers who have been influenced by his work. "Well, Paul I've known a long time," Downey Sr. said. "I knew him before he made a feature. In fact, he's going to do the interview with me for the [Criterion] box set. Yeah, he's a good guy. I've seen 90 minutes of his new movie ["The Master"] too, it's great." Looks like PTA is continuing to show the unfinished film to his close circle of friends as you'll remember Emily Watson had seen 30 minutes back in December. This also means the film is probably running quite a bit over 90 minutes as it seems unlikely everything but the final few minutes would've been screened. (For reference TWBB: 158 min, PDL: 95 min, MAG: 189 min, BOOGIE: 156 min, H8: 102 min.)

Continuing his kind words about Paul he said, "He's an interesting character. He's actually the West Coast Marty Scorsese in a way, he knows every film that was ever shot. He's one of those guys...In fact he asked me if he could use the firecracker scene [from "Putney Swope"] in "Boogie Nights," I said 'Of course.' I like that film." Also of interest is that a few years ago Paul had apparently been talking to Downey about potentially writing something based on events from his life. "He was interested in my teenage years when I was in and out of prison and the army. And I think he thought at one time that that kinda stuff might be interesting. He's heard a lot of stories from me. I remember talking about that. He's talked about it other times but he's got a lot of thoughts on his mind, he's always thinking." You can listen to the entire thing over at The Projection Booth. (via xixax).

Oh and for those of you who are curious we posted this (slightly better looking) blow-up of that 65mm frame to Twitter where you can just make out The Master dancing into the next room while bystanders clap for him. To the side is a piano & a woman playing an upright bass. Much more to come.

Stay tuned to Twitter and Facebook for the latest news and updates.


  1. yes CJ u are the fucking man

  2. thanks for the shoutout
    -guy who tweeted you about this

  3. damn paul looks old. he actually looks like kevin mcnelly :D

    fantastic two news in one day though.

  4. I'd say his lookin more like Ghoulardi himself ;)

  5. was this in paul's office or Downey's?

  6. Probably in the Criterion offices.

  7. Thanks for the shout out to The Projection Booth!

  8. I hope the camera guy manages to stay out of the shot in the next installment. What was that about?

  9. when will the other clips be available?