Hole In the Heart

'Hedwig' creator John Cameron Mitchell switches gears, channeling his own grief into his latest project


Mitchell admits his family’s initial response was “a bit of a disappointment,” but it’s equally clear the process of making the film was invaluable for him personally.


“Sometimes,” he says, “just watching Nicole from behind the camera helped me to purge some things about my brother’s death that I’d never really thought about. Watching her, watching Aaron, I could let some feelings go. In that way, it was very necessary to do this movie.”


If all this makes Mitchell sound like a sad, haunted man, it shouldn’t. More often than not, he’s wearing a sweet (sometimes sly) smile and generally seems present, even while sitting in a cold wind telling dark tales of the past. The trick of being engaged in life while honoring the past is something Becca and Howie are only beginning to learn at the end of Rabbit Hole. “It’s going to be fucking hard for them. I don’t know if they’ll make it,” Mitchell acknowledges. “But they’re trying.”

This article did not appear in print.

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