Richard Linklaker, the Austin-based director of this year’s ground-breaking movie “Boyhood,” joined fellow”Boyhood” creatives actor Ellar Coltrane and producer Cathleen Sutherland to discuss with photographer Matt Lankes the latter’s book “Boyhood: Twelve Years on Film.” (“Boyhood” was shot over a period of 12 years.)
“It’s great to be here in the House Chamber and not wear a tie,” the famously dressed-down Linklater said.
“It’s a period piece shot (over time) in the present day,” Linklater said. “You don’t get the chance to do that very often.”
Linklater also reminded the full Chamber that the movie is about the nature of memory as much as anything else.
“We think our memories are pretty exact but we are restating things to ourselves all the time,” Linklater said. “Nothing is very accurate. Every time I think about something I will remember it just a little bit differently. We are all playing a role in our own lives and sometimes it’s the hero.”
Each participant wrote an essay to go with the photos in the book. As Coltrane noted about his, ‘You are kinda ofa looking for the set piece and the big moment that will define your life and that never really comes for most people, I think.”
The panel agreed that the book was a blurring of the lines between what you see on-screen and what happens behind the camera.
Lankes — hired to do still photography during year two of the project — notes that he is Sutherland’s brother: “Nepotism is alive and well in Texas.”
He added that by the sixth year, there were more than 10,000 images, including year by year portraits of the cast. In year 10, Ethan Hawke, who plays the father in the movie, asked to write the intro to what was obviously going to be a book of photographs chronicling this 12 year journey. This was then expanded to essays from each.
As far as the creative process, Linklater said that most films are like runaway trains. “Boyhood” was a more contemplative process. “It was really 12 scripts and 12 processes and 12 films,” he said. “”Gestation time….is something film often doesn’t give.”