Beasts of the Southern Wild
 

Guest Conductor Quvenzhané Wallis at Celebrate Brooklyn!

celebratebklyn2_byRyanMuir
We’ll never forget that night, under a canopy of Brooklyn trees, when Dan Romer and Benh Zeitlin recreated their original score for Beasts of the Southern Wild live for an audience of 6,000. The Wordless Music Orchestra and Louis Michot of the Lost Bayou Ramblers performed along with them while the film glowed bright on the biggest outdoor screen in the city.

celebratebklyn3_byRyanMuir

And then there was this surprise visit from a special guest conductor…

celebratebklyn1_byRyanMuir

Photos by Ryan Muir for Celebrate Brooklyn.

Beasts of the Southern Wild with Live Score at Celebrate Brooklyn! and MASS MoCA

When it all goes quiet behind your eyes, what do you hear? Is by any chance… the original score from Beasts of the Southern Wild?

Beasts of the Southern Wild and Wordless Music

We hope you’ll open your eyes and ears on August 10th or 11th (please note new Brooklyn date) for these never-before-seen events. Co-composer Dan Romer and director and co-composer Benh Zeitlin will perform their original score to accompany a screening of the film, backed by the rich sounds of our new friends Wordless Music, providing a full orchestra. Part movie screening, part concert, these shows are unforgettable, and unlikely to occur again.

Once There Was a Hushpuppy

August 10th, MASS MoCA in North Adams Massachusetts
8:30pm
$15 advance / $19 day of
Facebook Event 

August 11th, Celebrate Brooklyn in Prospect Park
8:00pm (doors at 7pm)
FREE
With the fiery Balkan-via-Brooklyn brass funk of Slavic Soul Party.
Facebook Event

For a mere hint of what’s in store, give a watch/listen to this live performance of “Once There Was a Hushpuppy” from earlier this year at Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

This video from The Creator’s Project takes an intimate look at the making of the score with Romer and Zeitlin.

Planning a picnic or pre-party? Download our Bathtub recipe book here.

And light up the sky with your own non-flammable fireworks (aka glow sticks) like this one via Instagrammer @prettylightsnsb.

Glow Sticks by @prettylightsnsb

Blogger Linda Leinen on Beasts and Serendipity

In a stroke of pure serendipity (okay, Google alerts) we came across Linda Leinen’s thoughtful post on how watching Beasts of the Southern Wild inspired her to embark on a personal exploration of her own family’s journey.

Blogger Linda Leinen

Blogger Linda Leinen

She shares tales of her great great grandpa David Crowley, who rode out part of his Civil War military service in our home state of Louisiana, and the mysterious discovery of her family crest.

serendipcrest

Crowley Family Crest

“It bears a certain resemblance to an auroch, which raises some questions,” she writes. “Could that be Grandpa David standing nose to nose with Hushpuppy in The Bathtub? Did Confederate forces experience the Union Army as beasts from the North? Have I found the explanation for my inordinate fondness for hushpuppies?”

Read her whole piece here.

 

 

 

 

 

Remembering the Beasts Exhibit at CAC NOLA

This past weekend marked the close of the Beasts of the Southern Wild Exhibit “Beyond the Beasts” at the Contemporary Arts Center in New Orleans. The exhibit opened March 8th and was designed to illuminate the creative process, and the artists behind the making of the film.

In this video, posted recently by The Times-Picayune, Director Benh Zeitlin explains.

Over on Facebook, we’ve got an album of images from the exhibit — some found by searching Instagram, like the one below, and a few posted by the gang at Court 13 — (who have recently begun Instagramming at handle @court13films) that offer a glimpse of the exhibit.

If you have any photos to contribute and we’re missing yours, please email us at [email protected].

by @trevytoe on Instagram

by @trevytoe on Instagram

Music of the Beasts

Film Forward Discussion Guides

At the beginning of the year, Beasts of the Southern Wild was selected to participate the Sundance Institute’s Film Forward program.

FILM FORWARD is an international touring program designed to enhance greater cultural understanding, collaboration and dialogue around the globe by engaging audiences through the exhibition of films, workshops and conversations with filmmakers.”

Through the program, we’ve been able to share the film with audiences around the world in Jordan, Mexico, Puerto Rico and more. Part of Film Forward’s initiative is not only to share films with global audiences but also to encourage dialogue and conversation.

Our friends at Film Forward were kind enough to share their discussion guides with the entire Beasts family. Feel free to use these resources as a guideline in your film group, classroom, church or wherever Beasts is talked about. The PDF’s are available for download below:

Film Forward Discussion Guide – Basic discussion questions to kick start conversation about the themes within the film

Film Forward Activation Activities – Generated for classrooms but applicable to anyone, these activation activities help trigger discussion about how the film and its themes relate to viewers on a personal level

 

 

A Dialogue About Race in Beasts of the Southern Wild

Race

Jarvis DeBerry, an editorial writer and columnist at The Times-Picayune in News Orleans, dissects a criticism he has heard about the portrayal of race in Beats of the Southern Wild, and shares his reaction to it

Of course, when your characters are black and celebrate their attachment to nature, when the title of your movie contains the words “beasts” and “wild,” you leave yourself open to accusations of racism, to claims that you see black people as primitive, if not altogether savage. And when your characters ignore the evacuation order that precedes an approaching storm, you might stand accused of romanticizing people who don’t have the sense to come in out of the rain.

As a rural Southerner who has never felt completely at peace in the city and as a New Orleanian who stayed during Hurricane Katrina and interviewed others who did the same, I find both criticisms problematic. Urbanization has been black Americans’ most recent trend, but it is not our historical norm. Thinking of ourselves exclusively as city dwellers helps us forget one of the greatest crimes committed against us: the systematic separation of black folks from their land.

Read the full article at Colorlines.com.

Celebrate Brooklyn! presents BOTSW OST LIVE!

The music of Beasts lives on thanks to our friends at Celebrate Brooklyn! They’ve invited co-composers Benh Zeitlin, Dan Romer and the Wordless Music Orchestra to perform the Beasts score LIVE against a music-less edit of the film.

It’s all happening this summer, August, 8th at the Prospect Park Bandshell and is free to all. We’re hoping to press more copies of the vinyl in time for the event, so stay tuned for more info!

Until then, please join, invite and share our Facebook Event here.

And to hold you over, check out this live performance of “Once There Was A Hushpuppy”!

James Beard Q&A with Josh Penn: Food & Beasts

James Beard

 

The James Beard Foundation interviewed producer Josh Penn about the role of food in Beasts of the Southern Wild and within film in general.

JP: So much of the culture in the Louisiana bayou is about food, and more specifically, living off the water. It’s intertwined with everything, it defines the community, and is something that we really wanted to capture. Our first day of shooting was actually the day of the BP oil spill. Most people in the area live off the water in some way or another, and the spill threatened their entire lifestyle—because whether or not it’s your livelihood, it’s still the source of what you eat. It’s what’s all around you. It really underscored how food is interwoven into every aspect of life there. And the approach to food and how it should be eaten would obviously be different if we were telling a story about another community. I’m sure they eat crabs pretty differently on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

Read the full interview here.

 

 

 

The Creators Project on Beasts

The Creators Project produced a series of in depth videos on Beasts of the Southern Wild including featurettes on the Aurochs, cinematography and soundtrack. While you can find them posted throughout our blog, we thought it would be nice to view them all on one page/post. Enjoy!

MAKING OF BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD PART I

MAKING OF BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD PART II

SCORING OF BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD

MEET THE STAR OF BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD

THE CINEMATOGRAPHY BEHIND BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD

 

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