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About PressPlay

by Matthew Seitz
July 1, 2011 12:19 PM
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Greetings and salutations, readers, and welcome to PressPlay.

This new site will be a gathering place for critics, filmmakers and critic-filmmakers, highlighting video essays on film and TV, and publishing provocative, personal writing about popular culture.

I'm Matt Zoller Seitz, the site's founder and publisher. My partner in crime is Ken Cancelosi, a writer, photographer and filmmaker who's been one of my best friends for over 20 years; Ken will be the managing editor and air traffic controller for the site, so if you have any questions, suggestions or pitches, you should contact him at

We have some terrific people contributing to the site, including Jim Emerson (Scanners), Kim Morgan (Sunset Gun), Kevin B. Lee (Fandor), Steven Boone (Capital New York), Sarah D. Bunting (TomatoNation), Aaron Aradillas (Moving Image Source, Ian Grey (The Grey Indexes), Steven Santos (The Fine Cut), Craig D. Lindsey (Uncle Crizzle), Simon Abrams (Extended Cut), Serena Bramble (Brief Encounters of the Cinematic Kind), and many more intrepid souls who hopefully will join this ongoing saga of opinionated voyeurism and movie love as it unfolds.

Although we will run reviews, thinkpieces, profiles and other traditional, text-only pieces, the site will be anchored by original video essays created specifically for PressPlay, by its contributors. From time to time, we may also feature some of our contributors' earlier work, made before they joined PressPlay. I hope this site will be an archive as well as a magazine. The major reason I started PressPlay is because so many of my peers are doing interesting work in this form, yet it's scattered all over the Internet -- at YouTube, Vimeo,, Veoh and other third-party sites, and at publications such as Moving Image Source, Fandor, The L Magazine, and Roger Ebert's website, where the honorable Mr. Emerson debuts his own short video pieces.

PressPlay, then, will serve as a nexus point for this type of criticism. At some point in the future we hope to build an auxiliary site that will archive video essays by everyone associated with PressPlay, as well as by non-affiliated filmmakers creating notable work in the format. But that's a ways off, so hang tight.

In the meantime, here are our inaugural pieces: an action-packed video essay about the problematic legacy of James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgment Day, by Steven Santos, and a Steven Boone column reviewing Transformers: Dark of the Moon in context of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

Thanks for reading, and watching.

Much love,
June 28, 2011

McCabe & Mrs. Miller: A Video Essay from Steven Santos on Vimeo.

Mad Men Season 4: The Ladies and the Boxes from Jim Emerson on Vimeo.

Diary on David Holzman Part 1: The Sons and Daughters of David from Kevin Lee on Vimeo.

Notes for a David Lynch adaptation of Moonwalk from Steven Boone on Vimeo.

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  • Clarence Ewing | June 30, 2011 5:56 AMReply

    Congratulations and best of luck to you all in this new venture, Matt! I'm so glad I came across it, and I'm looking forward to reading and seeing what you do here.

  • Josh K-sky | June 29, 2011 8:36 AMReply

    I will cry happy tears if you can find some way to assemble all of the video on one Roku channel or similarly tv-portable location.

  • John Levy | June 29, 2011 4:45 AMReply

    This site is an awesome surprise! And so far everything is top shelf-awesome!

    Excellent 'McCabe & Mrs. Miller' essay by Santos!

  • Adam Zanzie | June 29, 2011 1:29 AMReply

    Aweosome. Congrats on a successful site launch, Matt! I'll stay in touch.

  • Anthony N | June 29, 2011 1:03 AMReply

    So excited about this!!

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