Bart Simpson from Canada (yes, he's heard the jokes) was a co-producer of the original BANANAS!* movie and hence became a subject of BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!*. And as a co-producer of THE CORPORATION, he's familiar with the nature of the beast. Here's his account of a unique Sundance experience.
After getting stuck at the Seattle airport for 27 hours (not something I recommend; they really don’t know how to deal with snow), any change of scenery was welcome. So you can imagine the joy I felt at finally landing in Salt Lake City and meeting a nice resident who offered to drive me and my new airport buddy David (co-director of the excellent 5 Broken Cameras) straight to the theatre where BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* was set to have its North American premiere at Sundance.
I’ve said a lot about the luck in having a bad haircut show up on a gigantic screen in front of a packed theatre, so I won’t go into that here.
What I am happy to say is that BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* is a great film, one I’m very proud to have been a part of. Fredrik, Jesper, Benjamin, and Margarete have assembled an accurate and telling portrait of our struggle to release a film that certain a big company doesn't want you to see.
It’s a bit strange to see a part of your life on-screen; a lot has changed for me since 2009 and isolating what belongs where in one’s memory can be a challenge.
So to see an intense time period projected third-hand from your recollections to a gigantic screen, by itself and away from all the rest of daily life that was happening at the same time – other projects, getting groceries, family business, et cetera – was pretty insightful.
I won’t ruin the film for any of you who haven’t seen it yet, but if you want a great story that is ultimately about how we make media in today’s globalized culture – I hope you go see it.
The BIG BOYS GONE BANANAS!* crew at Sundance. Bart Simpson is second from the right.