Tag Archives: Almost Famous

Meet the Crew: Jeff Wexler – Production Sound Mixer

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Jeff on the set of Elizabethtown. Picture courtesy of Jeff Wexler.

Jeff Wexler has been working in the film industry since he was an intern on Harold and Maude back in 1971.  His career spans more than four decades with such varied films as Foul Play, Being There, The Natural, Spaceballs, Independence Day, Fight Club and Mission Impossible III. We spoke on location working on his sixth film with Cameron, Aloha. 

Looking back on your 40 year career in the film industry, I read that you had no plans to follow in your dad’s footsteps (preeminent cinematographer Haskell Wexler). Tell us how working a summer job on Hal Ashby’s Harold and Maude changed your life?

I had been on sets with my father probably since about the age of two. I was very familiar with what goes on when making a movie but when I started to think about what I would do “when I grow up” it never crossed my mind that I would work on movies. I spent 5 years in college preparing to teach sociology at the college level. One summer I think my father felt that I had been in school long enough and needed a summer job. Of course he got me a job on a movie, working as a production assistant in the Art Department on Harold and Maude. I had known Hal Ashby from times spent going to dailies with my father, visiting the editing room (Hal was an Academy Award winning editor on several movies my father had shot), so I was quite comfortable on the set again, with people I knew. What I was not prepared for was how I felt, for the first time, being on a movie, not as a visitor but as a participant. I fell in love with the movies. When the movie wrapped I made the decision: teaching was out — I would pursue a career working on movies.

Describe to our readers the duties of a Sound Mixer?

I am a Production Sound Mixer and it is the responsibility, with my crew, for all the sound that is recorded during production. This is primarily dialog recording, but we also record sound effects, ambiences, music (sometimes live performances depending on the movie). Many others will work on the soundtrack for a movie in post production (i.e. sound designer, sound editorial, foley, music composer, re-recording mixer, etc.) but the production sound recordings are the primary and fundamental basis for the movie.

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Jun 15, 2015

Recap: IMDB Twitter Chat

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Here’s a recap of yesterday’s Twitter chat that Cameron did with IMDB. I’ve reformatted it to make it easier to read (one paragraph answers, no hashtags, etc.).

For some reason romantic comedies seem to be a lost genre. What makes Aloha unique?

Only a matter of time until some reinvents the genre and makes it fresh again. It always begins with the characters, and the twists that make it real and unique. A great romantic comedy always has aches, along with the laughs. “Silver Linings Playbook” was a great romantic comedy. The new movie “The Overnight” is excellent, as was “Skeleton Twins.” “Aloha” has a lot of elements, one being romantic comedy in the style of the movie “Ninotchka,” that was a favorite of Emma Stone’s too. 

How did you choose the cast?

Everything began with the great Emma Stone then we built from there. Emma was the catalyst. Bradley next. Then Rachel became available.   Krasinski, McBride, Bill Murray. One by one, a dream cast developed. Always such a thrill to have Alec Baldwin with us too. We had a great time on “Elizabethtown.”

Aloha looks like a collision of the past & the future for Bradley’s character. Is that accurate?

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May 15, 2015

Editing Untitled Hawaii: Emma Stone and Bradley Cooper Get Serious

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Editor Joe Hutshing, Gilcrest & Ng – Untitled Hawaii Editorial – March 28, 2014

Here’s the latest picture from Untitled Hawaii courtesy of Cameron. It’s editor Joe Hutshing hard at work on a scene with Bradley Cooper (Brain Gilcrest) and Emma Stone (Allison Ng). Joe has worked his magic previously on Jerry Maguire, Almost Famous and Vanilla Sky.

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May 13, 2014

Almost Famous – All the Various Titles Considered…

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In celebration of Empire magazine’s 300th issue, Cameron shared his original notes as he contemplated the many possible titles for Almost Famous. As you know, the movie was Untitled for quite awhile (and was Cameron’s original choice). Check out Cameron’s introduction and all the various alternative titles below:

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May 6, 2014

Meet the Crew: Neal Preston

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Neal Preston is one of rock’s most celebrated and iconic photographers. Neal’s relationship with Cameron nearly goes back to the beginning of his illustrious career. We chatted with Neal on location in Hawaii about his career, his new iBook Led Zeppelin: Sound and Fury and much more.

When did you first meet Cameron? I know you guys worked together at Circus magazine and Rolling Stone, but had you met earlier while he was writing for the San Diego Door or Creem?

You know, I actually don’t recall the very first time we met — but I know that around the time we met he was definitely writing for the San Diego Door. I remember my girlfriend Bobbi (who was a publicist with rock p.r. agency Gershman, Gibson and Stromberg) shoving a copy of the Door in front of me, virtually demanding that I “read this kid’s stuff!! He’s only 14 years old!!!!”

Yeah, he could write, but what was far more astounding to me was that he was a really good ping pong player.  There was a ping-pong table in the rec center where he lived.  I was 5 years older than him, yet he probably beat me 80-90% of the time.  I hated losing to him, more than he ever knew.  In fact I’m still upset about it.

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Apr 22, 2014

Almost Famous Revisited

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Cameron, Philip Seymour Hoffman & Patrick Fugit. Photo by Neal Preston.

Cameron, Philip Seymour Hoffman & Patrick Fugit. Photo by Neal Preston.

In celebration of a recent screening of Almost Famous at the Alamo Drafthouse, Cameron spoke to Todd Gilchrist of Bad Ass Digest about the film. Here’s the interview:

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Dec 17, 2013

Archives: How I Learned About Sex

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Gary Lewis and the Playboys

Cameron shares some personal stories on how he learned about sex for the October, 1975 issue of Rolling Stone. You’ll recognized a few of these anecdotes as they made their way into Almost Famous.

How I Learned About Sex

About What?

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Oct 21, 2013

Almost Famous with Pizza and Beer!

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More pizza and beer screenings at the Prince Charles Cinema in London, England. This time, you’ll have two chances to see Almost Famous on August 29th or September 5th. Get all the details and tickets over their official site. Thanks to longtime reader Ian, for the heads up.

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Aug 27, 2013


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