Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Filmmaker Mark Birnbaum Remembers Screenwriter Gretchen Dyer

From the art & seek blog - full transcript link below:
They were joined at the hip, Gretchen and Julia. They started The Potlatch, which you may know as a ceremonial exchange of gifts observed by Pacific Coast Native Americans. But here they brought writers and actors and filmmakers together to exchange their gifts. They organized table reads of new screenplays. Writers heard their lines read out loud for the first time in front of an audience. The atmosphere at those evenings was electric. You could feel the momentum of the independent film movement. They brought a community together, they changed the culture of Dallas. That community has hung together in some form or fashion ever since and last month it won from the Texas Legislature three bills establishing an incentive program that finally puts us on an equal footing with neighboring states to draw film production back to Texas. Gretchen helped kick that into gear.

Gretch and Julia may have been joined at the hip but they were far from identical. Gretchen was forthright and direct, Julia maybe more tranquilo, sympathetic. It took lots of guts and heart to make the film they wanted to make. Theirs was a family act. Their careers might have taken different turns individually, but they chose to stay together. They and their brother fought and worked and created together, and it was an inspiration for those of us who got to watch.

Filmmaker Mark Birnbaum Remembers Screenwriter Gretchen Dyer

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