Ten Minute Film School E29: Emily Bett Rickards et al on Funny Story

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Concurrent with Sundance, and arguably in 2018, more true to its independent film roots is the Slamdance Film Festival headquartered just up the hill on Main Street in Park City. One of the Slamdance features I most enjoyed was Funny Story, whose comedy is more situational and awkward than bust-a-gut hilarious. And that’s a good thing. It’s the story of a family, different from what you might expect, but one that very much shares the joys and sorrows that we all do. It’s a film that puts an audience through difficult circumstances with the hope, but no conclusive assurance that things will turn out ok. 

So much of what I love about independent scripted features, I love about Funny Story: compelling acting from a small, but talented cast, efficient budgetary and location scouting choices that enhance the cinematography, and a smart script that cuts to the heart of the human condition, equally adept at subtle humor and searing pain. 

We sat down with writer/director Michael Gallagher and cast members Jana Winternitz, Emily Bett Rickards, and Matthew Glave to talk about their experiences making the film, their aspirations for it, and Glave’s tremendous singing voice.

Click above for the interview. 

Gordon Hight is a writer, photographer, filmmaker, and fly fishing guide living in Teton Valley, Idaho. You can follow him on Instagram or on his website .