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Cold War Kid Matt Aveiro Makes a Movie
Heard Mentality: The best of the music, arts & culture blog for the past week
The Cold War Kids aren’t content with being one of the most successful indie-rock acts to come from Orange County; they’re now putting their imprints on various forms of artistic expression. Drummer Matt Aveiro wrote and directed the short film Jen In the Painting, about a painter whose tense relationship with his ex-girlfriend begins to affect his work. It premieres Thursday, Oct. 15, at 9:45 p.m. at the Art Theatre in Long Beach.
We talked to Aveiro to learn more about the film, his experience putting it together and what’s next for the now Long Beach-based band.
OC Weekly: Is this your first film project?
Matt Aveiro: It’s the first thing that I’ve actually done. I’ve been interested in film for a while. It just comes from lengthy discussions about film with my friend [Vern Moen] from Ventura, who produced the film. He also had some of the resources to actually make it happen, with the crew and all that.
What filmmakers influenced you along the way?
For this project specifically, I guess a big one would be Six Moral Tales by Éric Rohmer. Just the subtlety of those films—and I suppose the subject matter as well, and the manner in which they deal with them, being sort of very subtle, would be I guess the easiest way to put it. Using very little music. Almost no close-ups to manipulate the audience.
What are some of the challenges in telling a complete story in only 17 minutes? That’s shorter than a sitcom without the commercials.
Seventeen minutes was arbitrary. With the very little knowledge I have on how to budget a film, I guess I had always imagined it as 10 to 20 minutes. That’s where someone like Raymond Carver came in. He manages to capture that same emotion in five pages.
How heavily were you involved in other elements of production besides writing and directing?
I had absolutely no connection with anyone other than Vern. And I think Vern’s connections were pretty limited. [Laughs] I came across a guy, Adam Arkapaw, who lives in Melbourne, and I was just floored by his reel. I was e-mailing him the script, as far-fetched as that is, him living halfway across the world. Me and Vern were really the two guys working heavily on everything.
So Arkapaw came all the way from Australia to serve as director of photography?
That’s right: He flew over. I think he might have had some ulterior motives. It was his first time in America; he had a meeting with an agency in Los Angeles. I hadn’t even spoken to him on the phone before we met in LAX, and it actually worked out pretty incredibly. I think he did a beautiful job with the film, and I couldn’t be more happy with the work relationship and the project.
Okay, have to ask: Anything new with the band we should know about?
Pretty much just working on the record right now [their third, the follow-up to 2008’s Loyalty to Loyalty]. We’re in preproduction for the record. We have an EP that’s coming out in January. And all pursuing our individual, sort of, artistic ambitions, as well—as much as we can.
Read the full interview online here.