At this time last year, we weren't sure if we were even going to get into a film festival. Wow. Of course, what has happened in only ten months with Septien, especially in this current climate, could never have been predicted: Sundance Film Festival world premiere, purchase by IFC Films, a very solid subsequent festival run, a limited theatrical release, and, perhaps most shockingly, a return on our investment? All of this for a film that was made as a reaction against those sorts of goals. We simply wanted to make a statement by listening to nobody but ourselves and rolling the dice with a pure act of creative expression. Perhaps the sincerity of our mission is to be credited for the film's success. Who knows. I'm just proud that I got off my ass and teamed up with such smart, talented, cool people to bring such a strange idea to life.
Now, thanks to MPI Home Video, the train reaches its final destination, as the Septien DVD is unleashed upon the world today (sorry, no Blu-ray). I'm really proud of this release. A special thank you goes out to IFC Films' Michael Winton, who played middle-man and finessed the situation so that we ended up with a cover that wasn't a bad photoshop jumble of screen grabs. Thanks to the powers-that-be at MPI for allowing this to happen!
As for the DVD itself, there are a handful of extras that should keep you entertained. My favorite is Onur Tukel's 15-minute making of documentary, Land of Bad Ideas, which captures the freewheeling spirit of our production incredibly well. Also, for you Robert Longstreet fans, there is a 2-minute "Ezra Gonzo Reel" that must be seen to be believed. Another great inclusion is a slideshow featuring the 60-plus pieces of artwork Onur made for the film (seriously, sit back and chew on that for an hour or a weekend). I'm personally not a fan of audio commentaries—life is too short—but we provided two: one featuring the Rawlings Brothers (myself, Onur, Robert), and one by the Nashville Production team (producers Brooke Bernard and Ryan Zacarias and 1st AD Drew Bourdet). If you get through either/both of those, you deserve some sort of medal.
One of the driving ideas behind the making of this film was that it would hopefully have a long, timeless shelf life. I like to joke that Septien isn't ahead of its time, nor is it behind its time. It's just kinda around its time. It will be interesting to see how it plays out in the coming months and years. For now, it feels great to simply put the film out into the world and let it land where it lands.