Tag Archives: Interview

Zoo Review: The Real Mee – Part 3

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Benjamin Mee & Matt Damon (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

Benjamin Mee & Matt Damon (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

We thought it would be fun to look back on We Bought A Zoo through the eyes of Benjamin Mee. Ben took the time to provide some detailed and thoughtful answers on how the film came together from his perspective. Here’s the last part, enjoy!

What did you think about the film? Despite it being a fictional account, did it still hit home in a variety of ways?

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Mar 20, 2013

Zoo Review: The Real Mee – Part 2

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Milo and Ella Mee

Milo and Ella Mee

We thought it would be fun to look back on We Bought A Zoo through the eyes of Benjamin Mee. Ben took the time to provide some detailed and thoughtful answers on how the film came together from his perspective. Here’s Part 2:

I’m sure you don’t have a ton of time to watch films, but do you get a chance to take your children Milo and Ella to the theaters from time to time? If so, what are your favorite films or favorite type of films?

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Mar 18, 2013

Zoo Review: The Real Mee – Part 1

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Benjamin Mee and Cameron Crowe

Benjamin Mee and Cameron Crowe

We thought it would be fun to look back on We Bought A Zoo through the eyes of Benjamin Mee. Ben took the time to provide some detailed and thoughtful answers on how the film came together from his perspective. We will share a different question and answer over the next few days…

What was your reaction when you found out Cameron would be directing the film? Had you seen any of his previous films?

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Mar 13, 2013

Cameron On The Union

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Cameron chats about The Union in this video interview. Topics include the origin of the documentary, the magic of capturing Elton John and Leon Russell in the studio and much more. The Union will debut Thursday, February 2nd at 9pm (EST/PST) exclusively on HBO.

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Jan 30, 2012

Mark Kozelek Interview

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As part of the release of Mark Kozelek’s documentary Tour DVD, Cameron sat down for a chat with Mark. Topics include the new DVD, writing songs, interacting with fans on stage, Red House Painters, Almost Famous and much more. You can read the entire interview over at the Sun Kil Moon official site, but here’s a few choice snippets:

Cameron: Kris Kristofferson once said, “I write a sad song when I’m happy, because generally when I’m sad, I’m too sad to write a good song.” Where do you stand on the subject?

Mark: I’m the opposite. When I’m happy, the last thing that I want to do is shut myself away in a room and write. I generally write when I’m feeling down in an attempt to find some peace and contentment.

Cameron: You chose to film in black-and-white — what was the attraction to that?

Mark: That was Josh’s idea. We are both fans of black and white, and it helped a lot on the technical end of things.

Cameron: Are you finding that your older material feels fresh to you again when playing it in a classical style?

Mark: Yes. Nylon strings feel good on my fingers and sound better to my ears, so it makes me want to play the guitar longer and better. But yeah, something like ‘Katy Song’ or ‘Like The River’, I love playing them in the more formal, nylon string style.

Cameron: How do you go about selecting set lists for your shows? Does it depend on the city? The venue? How certain songs are feeling for you that day? Do the set lists change much from show to show, or do you have a similar set for most of a tour?

Mark: What usually happens is that I get on stage with a list of maybe thirty songs to choose from. But as the tour goes along, I add or subtract songs, depending on what I feel is working or not. Some songs are easy to remember, like ‘Carry Me Ohio’, but others, I have to sit down at sound check or in my hotel and re-learn. On one of those tours with Josh, that’s how we got the ‘Lucky Man’ hotel performance. I had completely forgotten it and was re-learning it in my hotel room one day. But seated and standing rooms are different. Sometimes I gauge my sets a little differently depending on the vibe of the crowd, and sometimes I tune my guitar a little lower if my voice is tired.

Cameron: Okay, last last question . . . are you ever going to act in another one of our movies? All our work was in the last century. Can we do some modern dramatic acting sometime soon?

Mark: Yes! I would love to. Give me a role and I’ll knock it out of the park. I promise.

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Aug 26, 2011

PJ20 Interview with Vanity Fair

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Cameron with Mike McCready

Cameron reunites with longtime friend and rock writer Lisa Robinson for an interview about Pearl Jam Twenty for the September issue of Vanity Fair. I’ve also included a scan of the interview below (courtesy of the amazing PJ site, Two Feet Thick).

Hot Tracks – Cameron Crowe’s New Documentary

Drugs, death and disaster are indigenous to rock ‘n’ roll. But according to Academy Award-winning filmmaker Cameron Crowe, director of the new documentary Pearl Jam Twenty, this band survived all the aforementioned dramas. The two-hour film, which opens in theaters this month and airs on PBS’s American Masters in October, was directed by Crowe from 3,000 hours of new interview material and archival footage. Both the film and forthcoming book, also called Pearl Jam Twenty (to be published by Simon & Schuster, with an introduction by Crowe), celebrate the band’s twentieth anniversary. Here, Crowe – director of such films as Singles, Jerry Maguire, Almost Famous, and the forthcoming We Bought A Zoo – talks to Lisa Robinson about “my little sketch of a rare American band that didn’t break up.”

Lisa Robinson: Why did you back to the band’s beginnings as Mother Love Bone with their first lead singer, Andrew Wood?

Cameron Crowe: I wanted to tell that story of lightning striking twice. Nobody believed there was going to be a future for those guys after Andy Wood died, and it’s kind of a rock miracle that Eddie [Vedder] – who was living in California at the time – sent in an audition tape.

L.R. What do you think Eddie brought to the band?

C.C. He brought promise, and also a challenge to their Seattle, set-in-their-ways community. Eddie, as a guy, wants to fit in, but he also wants to tilt against the windmills. That combination of push and pull really helped them. Andy was ready to play arenas with no guilt, and I think Eddie wanted to stay close to fans and build it slowly. He was both an insider and an outsider.

L.R. Do you think Eddie is the conscience of the band?

C.C. I do. And I think in a way Kurt Cobain was too – in that he kept [Pearl Jam] honest. Kurt was vocal and said, “Are we watching careerism here?” Of course, [with Nirvana] Kurt was his own careerist. But what ended up happening was that Pearl Jam actually swung the other way, and became more idiosyncratic than they would  have been if Kurt hadn’t been there [initally] saying Pearl Jam was more Guns N’ Roses than the Melvins.

L.R. But doesn’t every band that steps onstage want to be really big?

C.C. Of course. Now you can look back on it and see that they’re all dying for a spot on the big stage. But the Pearl Jam situation was helped by the fact that they were in Seattle – it wasn’t New York or L.A., it was around the corner. To me, that was the heart of Seattle – it was a pretty small community, and all these people played together. There’s not a lot of other stuff to do. The cliche is, because it rains a lot, you stay inside and you play music and you get high. And in the movie, [guitarist] Mike McCready especially is pretty up-front about this former drug problems.

L.R. Pearl Jam protested against Ticketmaster, claiming it was a monopoly. What was the long-term effect of that protest?

C.C. They were out there touring without any help from other bands, trying to find places in the middle of nowhere to play. No other bands would come out to the sticks and play like Pearl Jam was forced to, and that became the basis of a whole new layer of fans for them. When you go see them now, it’s a celebration of people who stuck it out with them. That’s why their shows have become such a communal thing.

L.R. How much control did you have over the film, and how did the band react when they saw it?

C.C. I had final cut, and when we showed the movie to the band, especially the part where Mike said it used to be Stone [Gossard]’s band and now it’s Ed’s, there was no oxygen in the room. They had talked about that stuff to us, but not to each other.

L.R. How do you feel about the finished film?

C.C. When we got to the final reel of the film, it was the greatest feeling to turn it up and watch [the band perform”Better Man”] live on a big stage with the music sounding right. I make movies to get that transcendent feeling from time to time, and if we got it right in P.J. Twenty, I’m the happiest guy in the world.

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Aug 15, 2011

Exclusive: Cameron On Music – PJ20, We Bought A Zoo & More

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I’m very excited to share a recent interview that I conducted with Cameron on all things music entitled “Music Matters”. We chatted about a variety of musical topics including Neil Young, Linda Ronstadt, Todd Rundgren, Led Zeppelin, the best guitarists he’s seen live and much more. Then the questions turned to the musical aspects of both Pearl Jam Twenty and We Bought A Zoo. Another in-depth interview will occur this Fall and cover more specifics around the films, but today’s interview is all about the music…

 

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Jul 19, 2011

Mark Kozelek: DVD + Cameron Interview On 8/16!

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Mark Kozelek will release a documentary DVD entitled On Tour. A Documentary on August 16th lensed by Joshua Stoddard. On the same day, the Sun Kil Moon site will post an written interview that Mark did with Cameron. So stay tuned for that. Here’s the details from Caldo Verde Records:

For 19 years, critically acclaimed singer-songwriter Mark Kozelek has toured solo and as front man of both Red House Painters and Sun Kil Moon. Until now, he has never given filmmakers access into his life on the road. Filmed during portions of Mark Kozelek’s European and North American tours of 2010 and 2011, this is a rare glimpse into Mark’s backstage areas and passenger seat travels. Shot in black and white, this dynamic film captures the fast paced travel of a singer on a solo-acoustic journey, giving viewers an inspirational look at its high points, and also a stark view of its mundane realities. Footage includes an intimate version of ‘Katy Song’ performed at Sant’Ambrogio Church in Bologna, a mesmerizing ‘Half Moon Bay’ performed in Switzerland, and a flamenco-flourished ‘Third and Seneca’ filmed in a Copenhagen hotel room. The film’s soundtrack includes album tracks, concert recordings, hotel room performances, and a score written and performed by Mark Kozelek.

TRACK LISTING:

  • Sam Wong Hotel
  • Ålesund
  • Void
  • Katy Song
  • Half Moon Bay
  • Australian Winter
  • Tonight In Bilbao
  • Lucky Man
  • Trailways
  • Four Fingered Fisherman
  • Like The River
  • Lost Verses
  • Blue Orchids
  • Third And Seneca
  • Carry Me Ohio
  • You Are My Sun
  • Natural Light
  • Moorestown
  • Heron Blue
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Jul 11, 2011

Mike Finger’s The Blue and the Black