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[UPDATED 2/20/18]

SAGindie returns once again this year as a sponsor of Film Independent’s annual DIRECTORS CLOSE-UP series in Los Angeles. The 2018 DCU takes place every Wednesday from February 7 – March 7. Attendees will get to hear filmmaking insight and behind-the-scenes tales from some of the most successful indie filmmakers of the last year. Series passes are sold out, but single night tickets are made available for each night of the five-week series.




Week 1 – February 7 – Lady Bird: Adolescence, Angst and Acting

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  • Greta Gerwig (writer/director, Lady Bird)
  • April Napier (costume designer, Lady Bird)
  • Jordan Rodrigues (actor, Lady Bird)
  • Marielle Scott (actor, Lady Bird)
  • Moderated by Jay Duplass (director, Jeff, Who Lives at Home)

“How dare you, Greta Gerwig, on your first shot, come out and make a goddamn masterpiece.” –Duplass
“I always say, none of it happened, but it’s all true. It rhymes with the truth, and that’s how it felt to me.” –Gerwig
“It didn’t feel like we were working, it felt like we were playing.” –Rodrigues
“Movies are just your poor attempt to capture life… You can never fully grasp it, that’s why it’s satisfyingly unsatisfying forever.” –Gerwig


Week 2 – February 14 – Storytellers: Writers and Directors

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  • Mike White (writer, Beatriz at Dinner; writer/director, Brad’s Status)
  • David Branson Smith (writer, Ingrid Goes West)
  • Moderated by Jennifer Cochis (director, LA Film Festival)

“The beauty of being a writer is you don’t need someone to ask you to do it, you just can do it.” –White
“I still feel like every time I get notes it’s a public shaming.” –White
“I set very specific, earnest goals for myself.” –Smith
“If I don’t have stuff written by 10am, the day’s over.” –White


Week 3 – February 21 – A Wrinkle in Time: Creating the Visual Language of a Film


  • Ava DuVernay (director, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Spencer Averick (editor, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Ramin Djawadi (composer, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • John Paul “JP” Jones (prop master, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Kimberly Kimble (lead hair stylist, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Richard McBride (visual effects supervisor, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Tobias Schliessler (director of photography, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Alison Taylor (location manager, A Wrinkle in Time)
  • Moderated by Robin Swicord (writer/director, Wakefield)

Week 4 – February 28 – The Independent Spirit: A Directors Roundtable


  • Sean Baker (co-writer/director, The Florida Project)
  • Josh & Benny Safdie (writer/directors, Good Time)
  • Chloé Zhao (writer/director, The Rider)

Week 5 – March 7 – Real Life vs. Reel Life


  • Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Faris (directors, Battle of the Sexes)
  • Anthony Hemingway (director, Unsolved)
  • Angela Robinson (director, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women)
  • Michael Showalter (director, The Big Sick)

Film Independent Directors Close-Up is sponsored by SAGindie, Directors Guild of America, Landmark Theatres, and DECENT.


If you’re interested in receiving invites to special events like this, sign up for the SAGindie email newsletter.

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