Written by Luke Barnes
Hey Everyone! Recently I had the chance to chat with Ethan Cvitanic about his mockumentary film Hit Record, which follows a young women attempting to become the next huge, global pop star and in order to make that happen she agrees to be the subject of a documentary. In the interview we talk about the current ideas surrounding what makes a mockumentary, celebrity culture, and the price of fame. Enjoy!
Q: If you had to sum the film up in one word what would it be?
Q: What was the message you were trying to get across in the film? And why was it important to you?
A: Art is less about the outcome and more about the process. It’s difficult, it’s scary, but always fulfilling, so don’t be scared, just go for it! For a long time I wasn’t sure if I was qualified to become a screenwriter or make a movie, and then I just went for it and it was one of the best experiences of my life and I want others to go for it too.
Q: Who is your filmmaking inspiration?
A: I have so many, but I think Curtis Hanson is a big one. He’s done films in every genre and I really admire that adventurousness. LA Confidential is one of my favorite movies.
Q: If you could go back to the start of your filmmaking career and give your younger self some advice what would it be?
A: Be sure to storyboard before you start shooting (just to save time), but more importantly, don’t forget you’re making the movie for yourself. If it makes you laugh, cry, etc that’s the best you can do.
Q: Do you have any funny production stories?
A: There were a few close encounters with the cops, mainly when we were filming on top of a moving car, but we’re all actors so we could talk our way out of it 🙂
Q: How do you view the mockumentary genre?
A: Mockumentaries are best when they are pretty realistic. I don’t think many are anymore, but Blair Witch, Waiting For Guffman and a few others really nail that fine line. I hope they make a comeback because it’s my favorite genre.
Q: What comment does your film make on celebrity culture and do you view it favourably or negatively?
A: I think of celebrities as people who are more known for their personality than their art, and, instead of fighting it, just keep using that perception to make money. We can’t all be Adele or Meryl Streep so it exists for a reason, but I wish we could focus more on the music or the film that they’re in.
Q: What is the price of fame? and do you want to be famous yourself?
A: Fame means having less privacy and I love my privacy, so the obvious answer is no. But if I do become famous it would probably be really fun for about a week.
Q: What inspired you to make this film, what was your catalyst?
A: Shug and I both love mockumentaries and grew up in Oklahoma, so we wanted to make something that included our favorite places and people (most of the cast are our family). The catalyst for going for it was me finally raising $6K and having 6 weeks free over the summer, so I figured that’s not too much to lose in the grand scheme of life.
Q: If you were to win an award for this film who would you thank in your acceptance speech?
A: My three best friends – Shug, Alex and Michael.
You can watch Hit Record now, on Amazon Prime in the US and other online store fronts in you are elsewhere. As always my review is now on site now, so check that out too!