Are you a fan of Woody Allen and Whit Stillman? If so then I definitely recommend checking out writer-director Michelle Morgan’s debut feature L.A. Times when it eventually gets released. The film premiered at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and it’s a contemporary look at love and life among three thirtysomething people living in Los Angeles. Morgan plays an aspiring writer with an opinion of almost everyone, Jorma Taccone plays the creator of a Game of Thrones type series and Morgan’s boyfriend, and Dree Hemingway is Morgan’s romantically troubled best friend. While this is Morgan’s first time directing a feature, she uses a lot of wide shots and long takes to allow the scenes to play out naturally and isn’t afraid to play someone that will get under people’s skin. Like I said, if you’re a fan of Woody Allen and Whit Stillman you’ll enjoy this film.
Shortly after attending the world premiere I sat down with Michelle Morgan, Jorma Taccone and Dree Hemingway for a really fun interview. Unlike some conversations that feel like people are hitting their talking points, what’s great about this interview is everyone says exactly what they’re thinking and they don’t hold back at all. They talked about what the film is about, the use of long takes and wide shots, if it was tough to get the film financed, who she trusts for honest feedback, if the script changed on set, memorable moments from filming, and a lot more. In addition, towards the end of the interview, you can also watch them play a game I call “Get to Know Your Sundance Attendee,” which asks tough questions like drink of choice, how long can you go without looking at your phone, what’s the last TV show you’ve watched that you want to recommend, what do you collect, favorite websites, and a lot more.
Check out what they had to say in the video above and below is exactly what we talked about and the synopsis. Finally, a huge thank you to everyone at Plexus, The Future Party and editor Jonathan Mathew for helping to make these interviews happen.
Michelle Morgan, Jorma Taccone and Dree Hemingway:
- The lack of Wi-Fi on Main Street and who is responsible.
- What’s L.A. Times about and how it’s not related to the newspaper.
- How she was inspired by Woody Allen and Whit Stillman to tell a story in L.A.
- How she uses a lot of long takes and wide shots.
- How did the script change on set and what did the actors ant to bring to their characters that might not have been on the page?
- How tough was it to get the film financed?
- How long did it take to write the first draft?
- Who did she trust for honest feedback when she finished the film?
- Texting friends to watch the interview…
- Memorable moments from filming L.A. Times.
- They play “Get to Know Your Sundance Attendee”
Here’s the L.A. Times synopsis:
Annette (Michelle Morgan) and Elliot (Jorma Taccone) are a mostly happy, moderately neurotic LA couple. Maybe Annette doesn’t enjoy game nights or taco stands as much as Elliot does, but no relationship is perfect, right? Rather than embracing their differences, Annette can only compare their relationship to their happy couple friends. This cannot be endorsed by Annette’s beautiful but romantically troubled best friend, Baker (Dree Hemingway), who is very well-versed on the bleakness of the LA dating scene. Taking its cues from classic mid-20th Century comedies with a stylish and contemporary spin, L.A. TIMES is an irreverent tale of life and the search for elusive love in the 21st Century.