Whatever happened to Whit Stillman?

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IMDB still lists no forthcoming films. Suzy or someone will know, surely?

N. (nickdastoor), Saturday, 30 November 2002 14:17 (11 years ago) Permalink

Well you're right. I do know him and he's taken some time off to write and may even do so for me in an anthology I keep wanting to put together.

suzy (suzy), Saturday, 30 November 2002 17:55 (11 years ago) Permalink

isnt it obvious - he's starring in the new musical CHICAGO!

damn Mr Jamison, all i want to do is DAAAAAAAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNCEEEEE!!

doom-e, Saturday, 30 November 2002 17:57 (11 years ago) Permalink

Doomie check your inbox in five.

suzy (suzy), Saturday, 30 November 2002 18:18 (11 years ago) Permalink

nada, suzy!

doom-e, Saturday, 30 November 2002 18:25 (11 years ago) Permalink

Check it now, apologies, it took longer than it should because it's an advice thing.

suzy (suzy), Saturday, 30 November 2002 18:26 (11 years ago) Permalink

I interviewed him a long time ago and he said he wanted to do a historical drama in a manner drawn from his great admiration of Steven Spielberg. Is this still true, Suzy?

nabisco (nabisco), Saturday, 30 November 2002 18:33 (11 years ago) Permalink

i sent a rambling rant back....i'm interested in how you see it.

doom-e, Saturday, 30 November 2002 18:34 (11 years ago) Permalink

basically suzy, i think you would have to have clear solid answers to the questions i provided before you could go further or otherwise it would be no worse or better than the other!

doom-e, Saturday, 30 November 2002 18:49 (11 years ago) Permalink

He took over Page Six for a week. He revealed that the 'J' in 'J Hoberman' stands for Jim. He did a novelization of The Last Days of Disco also.

James Blount (James Blount), Saturday, 30 November 2002 21:54 (11 years ago) Permalink

I hope his next film is better than Last Days.

I heard he had an upcoming project working with Noah Baumbach of Kicking and Screaming fame.

polyphonic (polyphonic), Saturday, 30 November 2002 22:01 (11 years ago) Permalink

Last Days Of Disco is brilliant, you silly man.

Whit Stillman is the world's most indie film maker.

DV (dirtyvicar), Saturday, 30 November 2002 22:48 (11 years ago) Permalink

I found Last Days Of Disco a bit of a disappointment after the first two. It seemed to be rather clunkily directed, or edited or something.

N. (nickdastoor), Sunday, 1 December 2002 01:04 (11 years ago) Permalink

I found Last Days Of Disco a bit of a disappointment after the first two. It seemed to be rather clunkily directed, or edited or something.

Yeah. Me too.

I don't see why Whit Stillman is the world's most indie film maker.

polyphonic (polyphonic), Sunday, 1 December 2002 01:23 (11 years ago) Permalink

I didn't know he was. Is there an award?

N. (nickdastoor), Sunday, 1 December 2002 01:28 (11 years ago) Permalink

This thread reminded me that I need to use the put-down phrase "Bible-dancing goody-goody" more often.

Ernest P. (ernestp), Sunday, 1 December 2002 05:42 (11 years ago) Permalink

I don't see why Whit Stillman is the world's most indie film maker.

the characters in his films are very indie.

DV (dirtyvicar), Sunday, 1 December 2002 17:02 (11 years ago) Permalink


James Blount (James Blount), Sunday, 1 December 2002 22:58 (11 years ago) Permalink

7 months pass...
Nabisco: I hear he wanted to make a film based on the same historical character that was the basis for Patriot with Mel Gibson, and was chagrined when that film preempted him.

Supposedly he's independent wealthy so has no need to work on films unless he really wants to.

I decided this coming weekend I will watch all of his films. I wonder if I'll like "Last Days of Disco" as much as when I first saw it...

amateurist (amateurist), Thursday, 3 July 2003 04:20 (11 years ago) Permalink

I used to like what's-it-called, his first movie a lot, at least up till the last act. Barcelona for its flaws I also thought had a lot of charm. But I thought Last Days of Disco was a real dud, poorly written, a wasted premise.

I heard he was making a reggae movie (!) next.

s1utsky (slutsky), Thursday, 3 July 2003 05:02 (11 years ago) Permalink

World's most independently wealthy indie filmmaker, perhaps?

Girolamo Savonarola, Thursday, 3 July 2003 05:10 (11 years ago) Permalink

Whit Stillman

A writer/director whose light, urbane sensibility launched him to the forefront of the American independent filmmaking movement of the '90s, Whit Stillman was born in New York City in 1952. The son of a member of John F. Kennedy's Presidential administration and an impoverished debutante, he was raised in the upstate New York area of Cornwall, and later attended Harvard University, where he wrote humor pieces for the college daily. Upon graduating in 1973, Stillman relocated to Manhattan and began working as a journalist. While in Spain in 1980 for his wedding, he met a group of film producers and attempted to convince them that he could sell their movies to Spanish-language cable television stations in the U.S. The producers ultimately agreed, and Stillman spent the next several years as an international sales agent for Spanish filmmakers including Fernando Trueba and Fernando Colomo. He also occasionally appeared in motion pictures, including Trueba's 1982 work Sal Gorda and Colomo's 1984 effort La Linea del Cielo. Upon returning to the U.S. in 1984, Stillman began working at an illustration agency. Over the course of the next four years, he spent much of his free time agonizing over the screenplay of Metropolitan, his debut film as a director. To finance the film, Stillman sold his Manhattan apartment for 50,000 dollars, securing the other 175,000 dollars necessary to complete the project from friends and relatives.

gygax! (gygax!), Thursday, 3 July 2003 05:48 (11 years ago) Permalink

I went to high school with the guy who played the DA character in Last Days of Disco. Or assistant DA or whatever it was. He was a grade below me, but we shared a couple of classes. I didn't really care for that film though.

Mr. Diamond (diamond), Thursday, 3 July 2003 05:59 (11 years ago) Permalink

this guy's movies are like my all-time guilty pleasure.

James Blount (James Blount), Thursday, 3 July 2003 07:49 (11 years ago) Permalink

why guilty?

(i admit no guilt w/r/t movies.)

amateurist (amateurist), Thursday, 3 July 2003 07:52 (11 years ago) Permalink

well, they just cater to my every whim SO well. and they're really not that far removed from Friends (which I like also, though I've never developed crushes on any of the characters). total comfort food.

James Blount (James Blount), Thursday, 3 July 2003 07:58 (11 years ago) Permalink

i feel no guilt, i think his grasp of dialogue is so insanely rich and as much as you may dislike his characters in real life (which I'm thinking is what Blount is hinting at), you learn so much about them after hearing just precious few lines from them.

gygax! (gygax!), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:07 (11 years ago) Permalink

yeah, I should have noted that insanely well written dialogue will hook me everytime (and I'm not quite sure what it says about me that I'd have no problem liking these characters in real life, except that if you're attractive and witty I'll let you get away with anything.)

James Blount (James Blount), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:11 (11 years ago) Permalink

As much as I recall being charmed by the dude's movies, I find I really have very little re-collection of them beyond a couple of scenes. Especially Disco, which is the one I've seen most recently--I wish I could say I found it a little more memorable.

s1utsky (slutsky), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:41 (11 years ago) Permalink

Anyone remember that hatched job on Stillman and Hartley from Suck.com? That was the worst bit of film criticism I think I've ever read. Although Stillman is not nearly in Hartley's league as a filmmaker, that article made me prepared to defend him to the death.

amateurist (amateurist), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:44 (11 years ago) Permalink


amateurist (amateurist), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:44 (11 years ago) Permalink

i assume the line above that said he's working with noah baumbach isn't based on much fact? if it is, that's so cool!

colette (a2lette), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:54 (11 years ago) Permalink

I think Wes Anderson & Noah Baumbach are working together right now.

s1utsky (slutsky), Thursday, 3 July 2003 14:56 (11 years ago) Permalink

Metropolitan has one of my favorite exchanges ever (thank you, IMDB):

Jane Clark: Why should we believe you over Rick? We know you're a hypocrite. We know your "Polly Perkins" story was a fabrication---
Nick Smith: A composite.
Jane Clark: ---that you're completely impossible and out of control, with some sort of drug problem and a fixation on what you consider Rick Von Sloneker's wickedness. You're a snob, a sexist, totally obnoxious and tiresome. And lately you've gotten just weird. Why should we believe anything you say?
Nick Smith: I'm not "tiresome."

Ernest P. (ernestp), Friday, 4 July 2003 06:14 (11 years ago) Permalink

Nick Smith is the best. Particularly fond of his 'why does everyone beat on the middle classes' and 'don't give me all that sensitive underneath crap, if a geniunely shy and sensitive guy wallked in you wouldn't give him the time of day' rants. Chris Eigeman's character in Barcelona has some even better lines. He's great.

N. (nickdastoor), Friday, 4 July 2003 07:06 (11 years ago) Permalink

Spanish Woman: You can't say Americans are not more violent than other people.
Fred: No.
Spanish Woman: All those people killed in shootings in America?
Fred: Oh, shootings, yes. But that doesn't mean Americans are more violent than other people. We're just better shots.

Fred: They're calling us pigs. That's meant to hurt!

Montserrat: I think you are too sensitive.
Fred: Oh great, now we're too sensitive.
Fred: I think it's well-known that anti-Americanism has its roots in sexual impotence, at least in Europe.

Fred: Maybe you can clarify something for me. Since I've been, you know, waiting for the fleet to show up, I've read a lot, and -
Ted: Really?
Fred: And one of the things that keeps popping up is this about "subtext." Plays, novels, songs - they all have a "subtext," which I take to mean a hidden message or import of some kind. So subtext we know. But what do you call the message or meaning that's right there on the surface, completely open and obvious? They never talk about that. What do you call what's above the subtext?
Ted: The text.
Fred: OK, that's right, but they never talk about that.

Seeing Barcelona again is suddenly urgent and in a very real sense, key.

N. (nickdastoor), Friday, 4 July 2003 07:17 (11 years ago) Permalink

7 months pass...
Just watched Barcelona and Metropolitan in the last week or so, and I don't really get all the ambivalence on here. Thought both were fantastic, particularly Barcelona, with some hilarious dialogue and evocative character relationships. I'm curious to see Last Days of Disco in the near future.

NA (Nick A.), Sunday, 15 February 2004 17:36 (10 years ago) Permalink

2 years pass...
Metropolitan has been re-issued on DVD in the US by Criterion. But I want Barcelona!

Alba (Alba), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:02 (8 years ago) Permalink

i know for a fact that my brother-in-law andy has been reading the various drafts of the screenplay that whit has been working on. i have to remember to ask him what it is about. andy edited the last days of disco. he also edited the last movie by lodge kerrigan, another odd bird with 3 films to his name.

scott seward (scott seward), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:38 (8 years ago) Permalink

Is it the Jane Austen one?

Alba (Alba), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:42 (8 years ago) Permalink

I'll have to ask him! He has mentioned that Whit has been sending the screenplay to him in various drafts, but I always forget to ask him what it is all about.

scott seward (scott seward), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:46 (8 years ago) Permalink

I referenced Metropolitan and Stillman last week in conversation - seeing this thread now, I realize that I do talk about his films at least a few times a year - am spurred to mention them sort of out of the blue it seems. But I always forget his name and sometimes even the names of his films as well as their, er, plot, yet I don't forget their tone, pacing, characters or particular images.

This probably means I should see all the films again, and kind of want to, but I recall them kind of depressing me while watching, and they seem too long because of that, which makes me always reject the idea. It's a conundrum. Maybe if he just made 25 minute shorts? A specialty-channel tv show? Dear Whit, that would be good.

rrrobyn (rrrobyn), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:47 (8 years ago) Permalink

Anyway - this is good news. Thanks, scott.

Alba (Alba), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:48 (8 years ago) Permalink

haha - "Anyway" ...
I also think it's good to have this news, yes.

rrrobyn (rrrobyn), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 14:53 (8 years ago) Permalink

Metropolitan is the Jane Austen one! Loosely based on Mansfield Park, including discussion of it between Audrey and Tom (who prefers literary criticism to novels.)

I feel kind of guilty for how much I enjoy Stillman movies, too, but I think Metropolitan is genuinely good.

horsehoe (horseshoe), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 16:10 (8 years ago) Permalink

I tried to watch Barcelona over the summer and totally dead-ended. Maybe Stillman isn't as good when seen alone? Maybe I have the attention span of a squirrel?

Laurel (Laurel), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 16:11 (8 years ago) Permalink

Metropolitan is wonderful, inept camerawork and all. It's one of the few instances wherein a filmmaker creats a credible alternate universe on an improbably low budget.

And Chris Eigmann [sic] is awesome in anything: "I thought the surealists were just a bunch of social climbers."

Alfred, Lord Sotosyn (Alfred Soto), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 16:12 (8 years ago) Permalink

Laurel, Barcelona is my least favorite Stillman. I hate to put it this way, but it is also the least, um, girl-identified of his movies. I enjoy it, but mostly because Chris Eigemann=my boyfriend. (His character in Barcelona is classic.)

horsehoe (horseshoe), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 16:14 (8 years ago) Permalink

Uh oh, I fell asleep the last time I tried to watch Metropolitan. Part of the problem is that I have a lot of trouble sticking with stories in which I don't LIKE anyone, and I NEVER like anyone in Stillman flicks. I love Chris Eigeman, though!

Will wait for life to settle down and try again in a different mood, since everyone I love loves Whit Stillman.

Laurel (Laurel), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 16:37 (8 years ago) Permalink

I quite liked Last Days of Disco. I barely remember Metropolitan, but that's because I saw it when I was like 14 and most of it sailed over my head. I never saw Barcelona, but I suppose I should.

jaymc (jaymc), Tuesday, 21 February 2006 16:41 (8 years ago) Permalink

That's how Warner does it.

Gukbe, Monday, 29 October 2012 23:01 (1 year ago) Permalink

Shit Stillman.

turds (Hungry4Ass), Monday, 29 October 2012 23:07 (1 year ago) Permalink

i like how the whit stillman and hal hartley threads are currently neck and neck. it's like 1992 all over again!

flesh, the devil, and a wolf (wolf) (amateurist), Monday, 29 October 2012 23:10 (1 year ago) Permalink

I watched damsels in distress on the plane last night, so funny! I was lolin out loud

lag∞n, Thursday, 1 November 2012 15:57 (1 year ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

Damsels in Distress was great. Very funny. I love how you slowly begin to realize that what you're seeing onscreen may not be objectively portrayed and then you begin to wonder what is real and what is peer-group reality-bubble - much like the experience of adolescent social life itself.

o. nate, Monday, 3 December 2012 20:33 (1 year ago) Permalink

interview with my brother in law about editing and whit and other things:


scott seward, Wednesday, 12 December 2012 22:26 (1 year ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

already posted elsewhere -

Absolutely adored DID. A rare example of a movie that got better and better and better the more it went on, to the extent where I'm obsessing over it now. I see very few films that create and sustain their own reality like this - I would even describe it as one of the few genuinely surrealistic American films of recent years. A gentler, more polite, more naively prone to snobbery yes perhaps but more compassionate reality, where the impossibility of all the characters - the nobly dumb fratboys, the perpetually self-possessed (even in despair) damsels, especially Violet, whose brazen, luminous impossibility is allowed to tear through the fabric of our given reality by that glorious ending. So yes - a film with no obligation to fulfil any logic but its own.

imago, Thursday, 17 January 2013 20:26 (1 year ago) Permalink

remember when that guy didn't know colors?

congratulations (n/a), Thursday, 17 January 2013 21:10 (1 year ago) Permalink

A rare example of a movie that got better and better and better the more it went on,

I noted the same thing but then realized I had to reacquaint myself with his rhythms.

the little prince of inane false binary hype (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 17 January 2013 21:12 (1 year ago) Permalink

3 weeks pass...

Whit Stillman ‏@WhitStillman
Yes thx we didn't have a prayer but “@adam_the_k: I hope list of Top 10 Oscar Snubs consoles @WhitStillman: http://nextprojection.com/2013/02/12/top-ten-2012-oscar-snubs/ …”

a tidy profit in Russia (Eazy), Tuesday, 12 February 2013 22:59 (1 year ago) Permalink

adam_the_k has a rather stillmanesque surname

Black Sabbath - violence, religious obscurantism (imago), Tuesday, 12 February 2013 23:02 (1 year ago) Permalink

7 months pass...

just had a very nice, semi-lengthy conversation with none other than T@ylor Nich0ls (unnece$$@ry g00glepr00fing)

ha this just happened again, such a nice guy!

middle-aged dads be *makes drinky-drinky hand gesture*

buzza, Monday, 7 October 2013 01:12 (10 months ago) Permalink


Guayaquil (eephus!), Monday, 7 October 2013 02:42 (10 months ago) Permalink

Ha, I rescreened both Metropolitan & Barcelona in the last couple weeks.

A Made Man In The Mellow Mafia (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 7 October 2013 02:52 (10 months ago) Permalink

Feel like it is approaching the time for my semi-decadal sighting of Chris Eigeman.

Gallucci Time (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 7 October 2013 03:25 (10 months ago) Permalink

3 months pass...

I thought for a minute the title meant it was the Metropolitan cast decamped to Paris, but then I realised they'd be a bit old.

Alba, Thursday, 30 January 2014 10:10 (7 months ago) Permalink

I just watched the Metropolitan trailer for the first time in over 20 years. It used to play before every film at my university film society for a while.

Alba, Thursday, 30 January 2014 10:45 (7 months ago) Permalink

I don't understand the TV business well enough to read that link properly -- does it mean there's a 10% chance I get a Whit Stillman sitcom, or a 90% chance I get a Whit Stillman sitcom?

Guayaquil (eephus!), Thursday, 30 January 2014 12:05 (7 months ago) Permalink

where's suzy when you need her

conrad, Thursday, 30 January 2014 12:07 (7 months ago) Permalink

Can't say I'm still in touch with Whit. But I am friends with someone who'd know a ton about Amazon Studios.

baked beings on toast (suzy), Thursday, 30 January 2014 12:49 (7 months ago) Permalink

come on you could say you were still in touch with whit

conrad, Thursday, 30 January 2014 12:59 (7 months ago) Permalink

whit's a big armond white fan I found out via his twitter

Insane Prince of False Binaries (Gukbe), Thursday, 30 January 2014 17:53 (7 months ago) Permalink

From the URL, thought Stillman was creating a show about Shaun Cassidy.

tbd (Eazy), Thursday, 30 January 2014 19:52 (7 months ago) Permalink

I'd think closer to 90% than 10%

the slow death of America's rich pastoral heritage (silby), Friday, 31 January 2014 18:50 (7 months ago) Permalink


Guayaquil (eephus!), Friday, 31 January 2014 19:17 (7 months ago) Permalink

has a novel coming... Love & Friendship: An Adaptation of Jane Austen’s Unfinished Novella Concerning the Beautiful Lady Susan Vernon, Her Loves and Friendships, and the Strange Antagonism of the DeCourcy Family


images of war violence and historical smoking (Dr Morbius), Friday, 31 January 2014 20:02 (7 months ago) Permalink

and now it's a movie, set to shoot this summer so this looks like it's actually happening - http://www.screendaily.com/news/austen-comedy-lands-at-efm/5066432.article

balls, Monday, 10 February 2014 00:43 (6 months ago) Permalink


conrad, Monday, 10 February 2014 09:58 (6 months ago) Permalink

2 months pass...

A letter Whit Stillman wrote to the New York Times in 1974.

Alba, Thursday, 24 April 2014 00:33 (4 months ago) Permalink

The most Whit Stillman-esque Whit Stillman letter ever

Master of Treacle, Thursday, 24 April 2014 01:42 (4 months ago) Permalink

That post, like the tiny record shop thread and geeshie wiley discussion before it, made my day.

Kilgore Haggard Replica (James Redd and the Blecchs), Thursday, 24 April 2014 01:49 (4 months ago) Permalink

It's great, isn't it? It's as if it comes straight from one of his scripts.

Alba, Thursday, 24 April 2014 11:30 (4 months ago) Permalink

1 month passes...

Good job there, guy


Ned Raggett, Thursday, 29 May 2014 16:15 (3 months ago) Permalink

A$AP Chris L ‏@brittonlowe 10m

“@WhitStillman: Death to Hip-hop” Aw c'mon, Stillmatic.

That's So (Eazy), Thursday, 29 May 2014 16:31 (3 months ago) Permalink


axe douche for men (silby), Saturday, 31 May 2014 00:53 (3 months ago) Permalink

yeah whatever that was it's gone now. ned, care to fill us in?

display name changed. (amateurist), Saturday, 31 May 2014 06:17 (3 months ago) Permalink

Stillman tweeted "Death To Hip Hop", and several ilxors hard sonned him (kudos to JBR for "The Notorious U.H.B.")

Damnit Janet Weiss & The Riot Grrriel (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 31 May 2014 06:26 (3 months ago) Permalink

For some reason I can still see the tweet minus the responses on my phone.

Damnit Janet Weiss & The Riot Grrriel (C. Grisso/McCain), Saturday, 31 May 2014 06:28 (3 months ago) Permalink

Twit Stillman

display name changed. (amateurist), Saturday, 31 May 2014 06:28 (3 months ago) Permalink

2 months pass...


horseshoe, Wednesday, 13 August 2014 14:10 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

IKR! Psyched!

ambient yacht god (Le Bateau Ivre), Wednesday, 13 August 2014 14:12 (2 weeks ago) Permalink


DERE is no DERE DERE (Stevie D(eux)), Wednesday, 13 August 2014 15:03 (2 weeks ago) Permalink


Mordy, Wednesday, 13 August 2014 17:58 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

oh of fucking course whit stillman's too aspirational for netflix


difficult listening hour, Wednesday, 13 August 2014 18:25 (2 weeks ago) Permalink

2 weeks pass...

It's live! It's free! Everyone go watch it!!!


Gay Fire Beautiful Dong (Stevie D(eux)), Thursday, 28 August 2014 14:40 (5 days ago) Permalink

did anyone watch it

lag∞n, Thursday, 28 August 2014 14:43 (5 days ago) Permalink

So even a free first episode can't be watched in Europe? Fuck that.

ambient yacht god (Le Bateau Ivre), Thursday, 28 August 2014 14:51 (5 days ago) Permalink

Milksops, pipsqueaks, oh this is the stuff. <3

So even a free first episode can't be watched in Europe? Fuck that.

Free version of VPNReactor gave me the 30 mins of US proxy time I needed.

Alba, Thursday, 28 August 2014 15:28 (5 days ago) Permalink

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