Josephine Decker

Lecture: Screenplay Without a Script, Part 1 of 2
Sunday, April 24: 9:45 – 10:45am
Noble Lounge

What are the ways we can communicate our stories without words?  Why rely on a screenplay? The class explores unconventional scripts like Ingmar Bergman's Persona and unconventional narrative film approaches like those of Joe Swanberg, Mike Leigh, John Cassavetes and Pawel Pawlikowski.  The class will culminate in students all creating a screenplay without a script: Whatever we collectively decide that means!

Workshop: Screenplay Without a Script, Part 2 of 2
Monday, April 25: 3:30 – 5:15pm
College Hall Chapel

Students will work in groups using the techniques of Joe Swanberg, Pawel Pawlikowski, Mike Leigh, and/or inventing their own.


Recently named one of Filmmaker Magazine's 25 New Faces of Independent Film, JOSEPHINE DECKER premiered her first two narrative features at the Berlinale Forum 2014 and theatrically in NYC. Her film “Thou Wast Mild and Lovely,” starring Joe Swanberg, Robert Longstreet, Sophie Traub, and Kristin Slaysman and inspired by a character from John Steinbeck’s East of Eden, balances horror, beauty, and intimacy as an erotic thriller set in the wilds of Kentucky and was said by The New Yorker to be ushering in a "new grammar" of narrative. The film won the Independent Visions Award at Sarasota Film Fest, Emerging Filmmaker Award at IndieMemphis and Best Narrative Feature Award at Dallas VideoFest.

Her first feature "Butter on the Latch" -- called “a sexy, wild romp you have to see to believe” by Indiewire and "an utter exhilaration of cinematic imagination" by The New Yorker -- is set at a real-life Balkan folk song and dance camp. The film, based on a Balkan folk song, explores the dark intimacy and neuroses of a female friendship.

In 2008, Josephine directed the documentary feature "Bi The Way,” exploring the rise of bisexuality in America and available on Logo and Netflix.  The film screened at SXSW, Silverdocs, and about 100 festivals worldwide and received rave reviews in The Austin Chronicle, Curve Magazine, The New York Times, New York Magazine, and The Dallas Morning News, among others. Josephine’s short films and music videos have played at MoMA, SXSW, Cucalorus, Maryland, and Austin Film Festival, have won children's programming awards, and can be seen on PBS and Kidzbop. Her short "Me The Terrible," about a child pirate who tries to conquer New York City, received a glowing review in The New Yorker.   

Fortunate to be collaborating with artists she admires, Josephine Decker spent the past two years producing short videos for United Way, creative producing a doc for performance artist Sarah Small and acting.  She starred in Brigitta Wagner’s Rosehill, Stephen Cone’s Black Box, Joe Swanberg’s Uncle Kent (IFC/Sundance) and Art History (Factory 25/Berlinale), Joe Swanberg and Adam Wingard’s Autoerotic (IFC), Spencer Parson’s Saturday Morning Massacre, and Onur Tukel’s Richard’s Wedding. Josephine raises awareness about environmental issues through her performance art. Her pieces, which feature striking visuals of performers walking in slow‐motion, have received press everywhere from The New York Times to WNYC, were featured in The Dumbo Arts Festival and at the UN, and won first place in The Human Impacts Institute’s Climate Challenge. 


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