Barry Levinson on THE BAY: Cinefantastique’s New York Comic Con 2012

Terror gets real in Barry Levinson's THE BAY.

Terror gets real in Barry Levinson's THE BAY.

Found footage horror is usually the domain of entry-level directors and cheapjack producers who have no problem using smeary images and awkward ellipses to cover for incompetent filmmaking. So what was Barry Levinson — he of DINER and GOOD MORNING, VIETNAM — doing slapping consumer equipment into his cast’s hands and sending them out to shoot their own footage?  It turns out that Levinson — no stranger to breaking the rules of standard film production (after all, his political satire, WAG THE DOG, was shot on the quick-n-dirty during an involuntary hiatus from the filming of SPHERE) — was whipping up THE BAY, an effectively disturbing eco-terror tale in which a Maryland fishing town is decimated by a quite vicious parasite born from the rampant pollution of Chesapeake Bay. In the process, he also managed to teach everyone how effective the found-footage technique can be when it’s used as a tool and not a crutch. Somebody had to.

Our coverage of New York Comic Con 2012 concludes, belatedly, with the roundtable interview Levinson gave during the con in support of the film.

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About the Author

Dan Persons

DAN PERSONS is a New York-based writer who first got bit by the Cinefantastique bug when he encountered the 1979 double issue devoted to the sci-fi classic FORBIDDEN PLANET. He contributed for many years to the magazine, first as a correspondent, then as an editor.

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