Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Hackers Now Reportedly Say Sony Can Release 'The Interview,' But With Changes Hackers Now Reportedly Say Sony Can Release 'The Interview,' But With Changes George Clooney Pushes For VOD Release Of 'The Interview,' Calls Out Hollywood For Lack Of Courage George Clooney Pushes For VOD Release Of 'The Interview,' Calls Out Hollywood For Lack Of Courage Watch: Sony Releases "In Franco And Rogen We Trust" Promo For 'The Interview' Watch: Sony Releases "In Franco And Rogen We Trust" Promo For 'The Interview' Watch: The Style Of Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Terrence Malick & More Recreated With Stock Footage Watch: The Style Of Wes Anderson, Quentin Tarantino, David Fincher, Terrence Malick & More Recreated With Stock Footage Surprising Full Cast Revealed For Jason Reitman's Live Read Of 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back' Surprising Full Cast Revealed For Jason Reitman's Live Read Of 'Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back' Sony Officially Yanks 'The Interview' From Release Following Hacker Threats Sony Officially Yanks 'The Interview' From Release Following Hacker Threats The 21 Best Performances Of 2014 The 21 Best Performances Of 2014 The 12 Best Shots Of 2014 The 12 Best Shots Of 2014 Baffling First Official Synopsis For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' Unveiled Baffling First Official Synopsis For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' Unveiled Rumor: 'Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Will Address Fan Complaints From 'Man Of Steel' Rumor: 'Batman v. Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Will Address Fan Complaints From 'Man Of Steel' Watch: Christian Bale Goes On A Hedonistic Journey In First Trailer For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' Watch: Christian Bale Goes On A Hedonistic Journey In First Trailer For Terrence Malick's 'Knight Of Cups' The 20 Best Movie Posters Of 2014 The 20 Best Movie Posters Of 2014 Recap: 'The Newsroom' Series Finale, Season 3, Episode 6 'What Kind Of Day Has It Been' Recap: 'The Newsroom' Series Finale, Season 3, Episode 6 'What Kind Of Day Has It Been' More Leaks Reveal Reported Plans Around ‘Star Wars’ Episodes 8 & 9 More Leaks Reveal Reported Plans Around ‘Star Wars’ Episodes 8 & 9 Sony Leaks Reveal ‘Aquaman’ Director, ‘X-Men’/’Fantastic Four’ Crossover Plans & More Sony Leaks Reveal ‘Aquaman’ Director, ‘X-Men’/’Fantastic Four’ Crossover Plans & More Review: Assassination Comedy ‘The Interview’ Starring Seth Rogen, James Franco, And Lizzy Caplan Review: Assassination Comedy ‘The Interview’ Starring Seth Rogen, James Franco, And Lizzy Caplan The 20 Best Films Of 2014 The 20 Best Films Of 2014 Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki

Interview: Barry Levinson Talks Going The Horror Route With Eco-Thriller 'The Bay'

Photo of Drew Taylor By Drew Taylor | The Playlist October 31, 2012 at 4:18PM

This weekend, Barry Levinson's disgustingly gelatinous eco-horror tale, "The Bay," will be unleashed in theaters and on iTunes. A cutting, inventive found-footage tale of a Fourth of July weekend that goes horribly wrong, we saw it at the New York Film Festival (where it was part of their inaugural crop of midnight movies) and pretty much loved it. The movie is all the more surprising for coming from the gentle, humanist creator of "Diner" and "Tin Men." We caught up with Levinson at this year's New York Comic Con and talked about what brought him to the found-footage horror genre, where film is headed, and what he thought of that gushing Vanity Fair piece on "Diner" from a few months ago.
0
The Bay Barry Levinson

This weekend, Barry Levinson's disgustingly gelatinous eco-horror tale, "The Bay," will be unleashed in theaters and on iTunes. A cutting, inventive found-footage tale of a Fourth of July weekend that goes horribly wrong, we saw it at the New York Film Festival (where it was part of their inaugural crop of midnight movies) and pretty much loved it. The movie is all the more surprising for coming from the gentle, humanist creator of "Diner" and "Tin Men." We caught up with Levinson at this year's New York Comic Con and talked about what brought him to the found-footage horror genre, where film is headed, and what he thought of that gushing Vanity Fair piece on "Diner" from a few months ago.

Kether Donohue, The Bay

Initially, the project started as a straight documentary about the Chesapeake Bay, a body of water that, the film points out, is now 40% dead. (Yikes.) Levinson realized that there was already a documentary on the subject, though, and feeling that he couldn't "necessarily improve upon it," changed course. "What stayed with me was all of these frightening facts," Levinson explained. "So I thought, well, storytelling, that's what I do, why not bring that into it…" He said that this line of thinking got him into a "sci-fi/sci-fact/eco-horror" thing that reminded him of the movies that played up timely social and political fears. "It's not unlike in the fifties, the scare of atomic energy unleashed," Levinson said. "You apply factual stuff to other things and create a piece of entertainment."

Levinson said that he wasn't looking to do a genre movie ("It didn't jump out at me") and even the found-footage aesthetic wasn't something that readily presented itself. Instead, it was born out of Levinson's desire to tell the most human version of the story, which is unsurprising given his oeuvre. "I was thinking about – this is the first time in history that in the midst of all this big stuff going on, you can find all of the small human behavior that was taking place," Levinson said. "So you can hear telephone conversations, people that were texting, people that were doing all these things – and we can find the small moments, which never would have been done before, against this catastrophic backdrop."

Capturing those moments, though, required a fair amount of research. Levinson said that the movie used "21 types of cameras, all of them consumer grade." He explained, "I didn't want to shoot with all these high-end cameras and have to degrade it later. We did all the tests earlier – what's the Google camera going to look like, what's the iPhone camera going to look like? Which was rather interesting to see the capabilities of those cameras." Levinson added, "I had a lot of fun in that."

This article is related to: Barry Levinson, The Bay


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates