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Talking Movies

Matt Wolf: Hidden histories recreated

Matt Wolf is a rising star whose experimental documentaries have caught Tom Brook’s eye. He profiles the young filmmaker.

Matt Wolf is interested in hidden histories – he gets many of his ideas from archival research and his films have an experimental quality.

Wolf makes documentaries, but one of his strengths is fashioning people’s stories where little actual footage exists. He has filmed actors on Super 8 film and outdated VHS formats to bring characters to life where no archival material is to hand.

The film that put the young director on the map was Wild Combination, his 2008 portrait of New York musician Arthur Russell – a man with a multitude of talents. He was a somewhat obscure figure when he died in 1992 but his work later developed a significant following.

The American artist and writer Joe Brainard, who died in 1994, is the subject of another Matt Wolf  documentary called I Remember, which came out last year. It is a biography of Brainard which among other things looks at the power of creative friendship.

More up-and-coming film makers from Talking Movies:
Sally El Hosaini: New perspective
Neil Drumming: In his own words

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