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Must-See Winter's Bone: Granik Digs Deep with Breakout Lawrence

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood June 3, 2010 at 6:48AM

Indie filmmaker Debra Granik did it once with the 2004 low-budget drama Down to the Bone, which showed what Vera Farmiga could do (she won best actress from the LA Film Critics). This January at Sundance, the director did it again, showcasing Jennifer Lawrence in a star-making role as a smart young teen fighting to save her family from falling off the edge in hard-bitten Ozark country. (The film won both the screenwriting and dramatic grand jury prize.)
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Thompson on Hollywood

Indie filmmaker Debra Granik did it once with the 2004 low-budget drama Down to the Bone, which showed what Vera Farmiga could do (she won best actress from the LA Film Critics). This January at Sundance, the director did it again, showcasing Jennifer Lawrence in a star-making role as a smart young teen fighting to save her family from falling off the edge in hard-bitten Ozark country. (The film won both the screenwriting and dramatic grand jury prize.)

Granik digs deep into the soul of her characters and the bleak rural location, mining color and flavor from non-professionals and local musicians. In our interview she talks about the method behind this taut suspense thriller, for which she takes advantage of the genre techniques inherent in Daniel Woodrell's crime novel to pull viewers into a narrative that is as naturalistic and believable as it is engrossing. Roadside Attractions opens the R-rated film on June 11 in L.A. and NY. I bet it's a hit.

Interview and clips are below.

Part 1


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Part 2


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Part 4


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This article is related to: Genres, Independents, Video, Interviews , Drama, Lionsgate/Roadside


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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.