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Down and Dirty Pictures

Down and Dirty Pictures

Miramax, Sundance, and the Rise of Independent Film

Down and Dirty Pictures chronicles the rise of independent filmmakers and of the twin engines -- the Sundance Film Festival and Miramax Films -- that have powered them. As he did in his acclaimed Easy Riders, Raging Bulls, Peter Biskind profiles the people who took the independent movement from obscurity to the Oscars, most notably Sundance founder Robert Redford and Harvey Weinstein, who with his brother, Bob, made Miramax an indie powerhouse.
Today Sundance is the most important film festival this side of Cannes, and Miramax has become an industry giant. Likewise, the directors who emerged from the independent movement, such as Quentin Tarantino, Steven Soderbergh, and David O. Russell, are now among the best-known directors in Hollywood. Not to mention the actors who emerged with them, like Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Ethan Hawke, and Uma Thurman.
Candid, penetrating, and controversial, Down and Dirty Pictures is a must-read for anyone interested in the film world and where it's headed.
Choose a format:
  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 560 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780684862583 | 
  • January 2005
List Price $19.99

Read an Excerpt

Introduction: The Story Till Now

"In the late '60s and early '70s, the studios didn't know how to market films for the youth culture, and they turned to new young filmmakers to figure it out for them. The exact same thing happened across the '90s, and when this generation came of age, it put out very original, distinctive, mature work. They revitalized American films after a decade of it being pretty fuckin' flat. It was the first real American New Wave since the late '60s."

-- Edward Norton

On a crisp November morning in 1979, Robert Redford, one of the 1970s brightest stars, inaugurated a three-day conference of... see more

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About the Author

Peter Biskind
Photograph by Elizabeth Hess

Peter Biskind

Peter Biskind is the author of five previous books, including Easy Riders, Raging Bulls: How the Sex-Drugs-and-Rock 'n' Roll Generation Saved Hollywood. He is a contributor to Vanity Fair and was formerly the executive editor of Premiere magazine. He lives with his family in Columbia County, New York.

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