2014 Tribeca Film Festival Filmmaker Profile: Noah Buschel (Writer/Director – ‘Glass Chin’)

Bud ‘The Saint’ Gordon (Corey Stoll) once had it all—a nice apartment, fame, public love and admiration—but a quick jab to the chin wiped that slate. Now living in a dingy studio with no business, no fans and no purpose except to help train an up-and-coming boxer, Bud longs for his former Manhattan glory. With promises of restoring his shattered image and ego, he makes a deal with JJ (Billy Crudup), a crooked restaurateur. But as Bud further entangles himself in JJ’s affairs, he finds himself framed for murder and faces a choice between his integrity and his aspirations. Capturing the moral dilemmas that emerge from the compromises we make for success, Noah Buschel writes and directs ‘Glass Chin‘ with a distinctive, vibrant style.

Anticipating ‘Glass Chin‘ Screening at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival we profile the film’s Director Noah Buschel.  The film screens as part of the World Narrative Competition on Saturday, April 19Sunday, April 20Tuesday, April 22 and Saturday, April 26, 2014 in New York City.

Find More Information & Tickets to ‘Glass Chin’ at the 2014 Tribeca Film Festival – HERE

Where did you gain inspiration when developing the Bud Gorden character in ‘Glass Chin’? Was it more of an introspective or Extrospective process?
Inspiration?  I mean, I’m not sure there was much inspiration.  I’m not sure it was all that inspired a character or script.  I don’t remember it being a particularly fun, up late at night, lightning in a bottle kind of script to write.  It was more like work.  If there was any inspiration, it probably was a mixture of internal and external.  Like when the internal and external blend together.  When old movies you’ve seen blend together with your present life.  Bud Gordon has some aspects of me.  And some aspects of other people I know.  And there’s some Chuck Tatum, Kirk Douglas’ character in Ace In The Hole.  It was a really unpleasant character to write, I remember that.  It was very uncomfortable writing him.

Class_Chin_Corey_StollAs with many of your other films, you serve as writer/director on Glass Chin. Do you feel it’s important to also direct the films that you write, and if so, why?
No, not important for me to direct.  I don’t feel like I need to direct anything I write.  I try to give all my writing away.  Like Tom Sawyer getting people to paint that fence. But I’m not as convincing as Tom Sawyer, so then I have to do it myself.

From a visual perspective, can you explain what you wanted out of the Cinematography for the film?  What was your first conversation like with its DP Ryan Samul?
Well, Ryan and I did this movie Sparrows Dance together, and we found some things on that.  He’s really great, Ryan.  So on Sparrows, we did kinda Yasujiro Ozu influenced photography, but in our own stupid American way.  So, we brought some of that to Glass Chin.  And then, the main thing was just trying to make Manhattan feel very cold and ghostly and a place of severe vanity and cruelty and betrayal.  Manhattan we shot as silver.  And Jersey was gold and red.  Jersey, we shot like it was home.  A place of warmth, love, humbleness, true friendship.  It wasn’t that difficult either, to shoot Jersey as warm and Manhattan as cold and venal.  I mean, it wasn’t a big stretch.

Glass_Chin_Tribeca_Film_Festival_2014Hollywood has released many boxing movies over the years – Rocky, Raging Bull, Million Dollar Baby, The Fighter. In your opinion, what key elements diversify Glass Chin from the rest of the pack?
Well, genres are just there to give some form to originality and uniqueness, I feel.  The genre is just a frame.  Or, it’s like an anchor.  And you can make the strangest, most fresh and original and personal movie you want, a very new movie– cause you got this classic anchor holding it down, keeping it grounded.  That’s how I see genres.  In a way, maybe, you can really express your individuality much better when you ground your stuff in conventional forms.

If you could have one thing resonate with audiences after watching Glass Chin, what would that be?
One thing to resonate with audiences?  Um… Geez, I dunno.  I guess mostly I would just hope that they didn’t fall asleep during the screening.  And if they did fall asleep, I hope that the movie didn’t disturb their dreams too much.  But, yeah, I can’t think about audiences too much.  I’m making the movie to try to teach stuff to myself.  That’s what I’m concerned with.   I got a lot to learn.

Noah BuschelAbout The Director
Before Glass Chin, Noah Buschel completed the film Sparrows Dance, which won the Austin Film Festival for Best Narrative Feature Film and was released theatrically by Tribeca Films; Indiewire called it “one of the best films of the year.” He also wrote and directed The Missing Person, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, was named on over eight Best Film Lists in 2009, and for which he was nominated for a Gotham Award for Breakthrough Director. Other credits include writing and directing Neal Cassady (IFC Films) and directing Bringing Rain (2003 TFF Premiere).

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