Interview: 'Chronicle' Director Josh Trank on Making Telekinesis Real
by Alex Billington
February 2, 2012
Meet Josh Trank. Get to know his name. You will be hearing it quite a bit in the near future. Not only is he the very talented filmmaker behind the superpowers found-footage film Chronicle, which I've seen and is awesome, but he's already being pursued for the new Fantastic Four movie, too. With Chronicle arriving in theaters this weekend, I met up with Josh on Skype for a video chat and interview/discussion on how he got here, how he made this movie, plus everything else in-between, with references to Blair Witch Project, Stand By Me, Akira and even Jaws. Josh is a big cinephile like all of us and it was great to talk with him.
Editor's Note: This is a video recorded on Skype of our interview. I thought it was perfectly fitting I speak with the director of a found-footage film over Skype and present it in this form. My video image occasionally moves and jumps back into the middle, this was a technical glitch and happens briefly, it doesn't affect the video or discussion otherwise. This was also split into two parts, as we talked for nearly 30 minutes, so the first half is his story of how he got started, the second half he talks about making Chronicle specifically:
I've been watching out for Josh ever since stumbling across his Star Wars short film Stabbing at Leia's (watch that online here) and got the feeling he was up to something unique and exciting when he partnered with Max Landis for Chronicle. This is his feature directorial debut and he talks about how the studio, Fox, was unsure of him as a first-time director when originally considering making the movie, but I think taking a "gamble" on him has certainly paid off. He made a truly outstanding movie in the end that no matter what has gained a lot of buzz and will definitely influence the found-footage genre in Hollywood moving forward.
Speaking of Chronicle, I love this movie. Everything he does with it, the way he pushes the found-footage genre, the way he throws out found-footage with a trick in the second half, how grounded and realistic it is, how awesome it is from a conceptual standpoint. He made a movie that many will enjoy and want to watch over and over again (I know that's how I feel). He references movies like Stand By Me because I think he really did perfectly capture a "moment in time" and hasn't made just another Hollywood flick that will be forgotten about months from now. Chronicle lands in theaters everywhere on February 3rd this weekend.