Like a Palindrome the world turns in on itself, unchanged and unchanging. Director Todd Solondz still lives alone in the same place he did 10 years before “Welcome to the Dollhouse” stormed Sundance in 1995.
Born in 1959 in Newark, N.J, Solondz studied at NYU Film School and made several short films, one of which turned studio heads at 20th Century Fox.
The upside: a 3 picture deal.
The downside: FEAR, ANXIETY and DEPRESSION, his awful first film.
Solondz soon retreated back to New York for a job teaching English to Russian immigrants. (Inspired Happiness: Joy’s hair is yanked at the Language Annex.)
His second stab as auteur with “Welcome to the Dollhouse” wowed ‘em followed by the multi star-power success of “Happiness”, but he then suffered the worst director’s humiliation- Storytelling was censored. (Imagine your own kinky scene in place of the sweaty blue-box onscreen.)
Damn that Diva Dawn. On-top of the film’s rating not being what he intended, the “Storytelling” script was hastily/reluctantly rewritten when that fuckin’ Weiner, Heather Matarazzo, refused to reprise her dorky throne. And after considerable begging, Matarazzo would also not participate in Palindromes, leaving Mark Weiner to go it alone. Cue the funeral.
My interview- My surprise.
I was reluctant to meet Todd Solondz, thinking he would be quiet, creepy and guarded. Not at all. Dressed in melon pants, yellow shirt and light blue sweater, Solondz darted across the room to greet me with a big smile and howdy-do handshake.
He is the friendliest Easter egg I ever met.
Festival audiences at the ’04 Venice Intl Film Festival, Toronto and Telluride have been squirming in their seats in response to “Palindromes” that both prods and provokes.
Get the interview in part two of SOLONDZIAN CRUELTY – NO SUCH THING>>>