Wednesday, June 24, 2009

AFF Filmmaker Follow Up with Gary Lundgren

Gary Lundgren wrote and directed the short film "Wow and Flutter" in 2004. The film screened at more than thirty film festivals world-wide including Austin, AFI, Flickerfest and Gen Art. The film won Best Short Film at the Hampton’s International Film Festival and the Paste Rock ‘n Reel Fest. Recently, Mr. Lundgren wrote and directed the feature comedy "Calvin Marshall" which stars Alex Frost as a kid struggling to make his local junior college baseball team. The film will be released in 2010. Previously, Mr. Lundgren taught filmmaking and cinematography at Santa Barbara City College and the Santa Barbara Multimedia Academy. He also works as a screenwriter and has directed music videos and television. Mr. Lundgren resides in Santa Monica, CA with his wife, producer Anne Lundgren, and their daughter.

AFF talked with Gary about the background of "Wow and Flutter" and his upcoming film "Calvin Marshall".

AFF: Tell me about your film that screened at the festival.

Gary: Wow and Flutter is a 17 minute short film about a first crush that
played festivals in 2004-2005. The story follows David, a sheltered
high school freshman as he falls for an older girl and creates a mix
tape for her. It can currently be seen on

AFF: Was the films participation in festivals important for it’s

Gary: Screening at film festivals was our primary goal. Our three prints
stayed busy all year and played over thirty festivals. Highlights
were Austin, AFI, Gen Art and Hamptons where it won best short film.
It was amazing to see the film take on a life of its own with festival
audiences. This exposure was critical as it created a lot of momentum
for us.

AFF: It’s been said that Ethan Moskowitz was the last actor
auditioned for the part of David. How did you know he was the one?

Gary: Ethan was literally the last actor who read for David. We expected
to cast the part in Portland where we read over a hundred kids. Ethan
turned up a week later in Ashland. We were excited because he looked
the part and was the right age. He was also natural and confident
with a great presence. It was obvious he could carry the film when we
looked at the audition tape.

Ethan Moskowitz and Oliva Avila in "Wow and Flutter"

AFF: The movie is inspired by a personal story, but also your own love
for music. How did you go about choosing the music for the film? Was
there a balance between your own preferences and the needs of the

Gary: I'm a music junkie so it was critical that the tracks worked for
the story and also made a good soundtrack. I love introducing obscure
bands to people and I wanted this to be a facet of the movie. Most of
the songs were chosen before we began shooting.

AFF: How well does the story stay true to the personal story?

Gary: This was not autobiographical, although I had my share of mix tapes
and crushes in high school. Also, a friend of mine had a family with
a similar oppressive dynamic that I borrowed from. It's all pretty
much fiction though.

AFF: You have worked with your wife, Anne Lundgren, on several
projects. How does your close relationship outside of work affect
the work you do together?

Gary: Anne and I have been working together since film school in the
nineties so it's been a natural, fun part of our relationship. We've
never known anything different so it's comfortable and effective.
We've been lucky to also be working alongside producers Mark
Cunningham and Michael Matondi that make up our company Broken Sky

AFF: Is there an event at the Austin Film Festival that you
particularly enjoyed?

Gary: I have great memories of the Austin Film Festival and highly
recommend it. Austin is one of my favorite cities and the festival is
well run. The audiences were warm and friendly and the food and
parties were great. We met some people there in the film community
back in '04 festival that we're still in touch with.

Gary and Anne Lundgren at the 2004 festival

AFF: What are you working on now?

We just finished post on a feature called "Calvin Marshall" starring
Alex Frost, Michelle Lombardo and Steve Zahn. It's a bittersweet
comedy about Calvin's life long dream to play college baseball. It
has a similar tone/style as "Wow and Flutter" and also has a great
soundtrack. It's ultimately a story about overcoming disappointment.
We're excited to screen at festivals this fall and spearhead a
theatrical release in early 2010. Our website will
be up and running this summer.

Michelle Lombardo and Steve Zahn filming a scene for "Calvin Marshall"

Its not too late to enter your film!

Late post-mark deadline: July 3rd

Very late deadline: July 15th

Just one more you reason you should be at the Austin Film Festival & Conference in October...

This year's panel discussions will feature case studies of the writing and script-to-screen production process with the writers and creators for such films and shows as Twilight, "Lost", Valkyrie, Watchmen, The Secret Life of Bees, "Mad Men" and the HBO hit series "Entourage"

1 comment:

Bella @ Lil Daisies said...

I saw Wow and Flutter and really liked the ingenuity of it. I was impressed...I am looking forward to seeing Calvin Marshall.