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"Hesher" Has 22 Producers - OnMedea

"Hesher" Has 22 Producers

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At the upcoming Super Bowl in Miami, 22 players are absolutely necessary to play the game.  Apparently, 22 producers are absolutely necessary to make "Hesher" - an independent film premiering at the Sundance Film Festival (and just picked up for distribution by Newmarket) starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Natalie Portman.

There's a fixed joke in Hollywood that you can't throw a rock without hitting a screenwriter.  It seems, for those of us inclined to throw rocks, you can't throw a rock at Sundance without hitting an independent film producer

What happens if, by some chance, "Hesher" gets nominated for an Academy Award next year.  Only three producers are allowed on the ballot and actually receive the award.  What happens to the other 19 and what is the process for weeding it down to three?  Wouldn't that be a great reality show?

And "Hesher" is not an isolated case.  It appears to be a trend. 

Here are three films that were at the Sundance Film Festival and the number of Producers that were necessary to produce them.

hesher.jpgHesher (22 Producers - including "Executive" and "Co"-Producers)

  • Lucy Cooper
  • Matthew Weaver
  • Scott Prisand
  • Natalie Portman
  • Spencer Susser
  • Johnny Lin
  • Win Sheridan
  • Jonathan Weisgal
  • Wayne Chang
  • Aleen Keshishian
  • Annette Savitch
  • Scot Armstrong
  • Ravi Nandan
  • Aaron Dowing
  • Rob Ortiz
  • Scott Kluge
  • Jeff Davis
  • Jay Rifkin
  • Ari Ackerman
  • Jay Franks
  • Happy Walters
  • Gina Kirkpatrick

the_kids_are_all_right_image.jpgThe Kids Are All Right (starring Julianne Moore, Annette Bening and Mark Ruffalo - 13 Producers)

  • Gary Gilbert
  • Jeffrey Levy-Hinte
  • Celine Rattray
  • Jordan Horowitz
  • Daniela Taplin Lundberg
  • Steven Saxton
  • Ron Stein
  • Christy Cashman
  • Anne O'Shea
  • Riva Marker
  • Andrew Sawyer
  • Neil Katz
  • J. Todd Harris

the_romantics_holmes_wood.jpgThe Romantics (starring Katie Holmes and Josh Duhamel - 11 Producers)

  • Daniela Taplin Lundberg
  • Jennifer Todd
  • Suzanne Todd
  • Michael Benaroya
  • Taylor Kephart
  • Galt Niederhoffer
  • Katie Holmes
  • Riva Marker
  • Celine Rattray
  • Pamela Hirsch
  • Ron Stein

Look, I'm sure all these people played a vital role in their respective films' journey to the screen... or not (only those on the production really know what's going on here).  But a Producer credit used to be highly-coveted and very difficult to get - in most cases after years of paying dues and working up the cinematic ladder. 

Today, it seems, the credit is handed out like film festival swag.  Now, when I meet someone who says they are a producer on an independent film, I am inclined to say "Oh, really, what, did you deliver the food?"

jill_kennedy_small.jpgJill Kennedy - OnMedea

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Molly Glover said:

Do you think they all got paid? I thought independent films were low budget. Maybe they got credit instead of being paid.

Hollywood Producer said:

Most of those are a joke. Some of them are probably with the company that financed it and wanted to get their names on the movie. Probably others have ties to the actors in a manager or lawyer capacity. Others may have had rights to the script in previous years. It's really a joke the Producer credit thing. It needs to be fixed. There were probably 2 out of the 22 that did most of the work.

I agree with Hollywood Producer. Most of them probably belong in the "thank you" section and not given a Producer credit. Whenever I think of a Producer, I think of Dustin Hoffman's role in "Wag the Dog." He was hilarious in that!

Jill Kennedy said:

I agree, Marty, that they probably aren't producers and it is more of a gift - but they are given credit. I wonder if they are going to be willing to give it up if, for whatever reason, the producer's guild or the Academy gets in involved. We're talking about removing 19 producer credits off of a film. Granted, from what I hear, there is no way in hell this movie gets nominated for anything - but, wouldn't it be funny if it did?

1 of the credited 22 producers said:

Hell, yes, I delivered the food and it was fucking great. My credit is deserved!

1 of the Credited 22 Producers

About Jill Kennedy

Jill Kennedy - Blogger - OnMedea Jill Kennedy is an Ivy League MBA / refugee from Lehman Brothers.

Manka Bros. (and the Manka Business Channel) hired her (for a very low sum) to cover the world of media (not the world of Medea) in her own words without corporate interference.

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About Medea

Medea Medea was a real bitch from classical mythology - as most famously dramatized by Euripides.

She was a sorceress and wife of Jason, whom she assisted in obtaining the Golden Fleece. When Jason deserted her, she chopped up their children. One could say, Medea acted as rationally as a major media company.


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