Chaired by Briony Hanson from The Script Factory, Lisa Cholodenko holds court on her career in a masterclass presented in association with Variety. She depicts a life engaged with the tension between unorthodoxy and mainstream reach, something that was fomented in her early days as an editor for major studios before striking out to pursue her own vision at film school in New York. Her new feature, The Kids Are All Right, may just be the best expression of that balance between idiosyncracy and universality. The story of an unplanned re-cut of the film in order to better capitalise on burgeoning critical acclaim is one that feels like an excitable pursuit of harmony and not compromise.
Cholodenko touches on her filmography and discusses casting decisions in High Art, and emulating the humanistic sensibility of 1970s cinema in Laurel Canyon. Attention is focused most closely though on her new film, which is the product of a directing style that obsesses over subtext and relies heavily on the telling, authentic gesture. Insight is offered into the richness of collaboration between actor and director as she explains how these moments occur variously from the script itself, from being 'embedded' implicitly in the scene or from intuitive and spontaneous inspiration in her actors.