Filmmaker Wants Credit For “Exit Through the Gift Shop”

Filmmaker Wants Credit For “Exit Through the Gift Shop” (photo)

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We know you have questions about Banksy’s amazing street art documentary “Exit Through the Gift Shop.” We still have them too. Foremost among them: just what is the reality of Thierry Guetta, a.k.a. the street artist known as Mr. Brainwash. As “Gift Shop” tells it, Guetta was an obsessive videographer who stumbled into the unofficial role of cameraman to the street art stars. After documenting graffiti artists like Banksy and Shepard Fairey for years, he had hundreds of hours of footage lying around his house and absolutely no plans to use them. Banksy convinced Guetta to get off his ass and make a film; the result was a disastrous mind-numbing collage called “Life Remote Control.” So Banksy, determined to put Guetta’s footage to good use, convinced the documentarian to give him the footage to do with as he pleased. And to keep Guetta off his back, Banksy encouraged him to become a street artist himself. And thus Mr. Brainwash was born.

But are those events true or just the version of things Banksy wants us to believe? Maybe Mr. Brainwash is an idiot savant who’s won over an unsuspecting art world; maybe he’s a Banksy creation specifically designed to expose the art world for the dumb, shallow thing that it is. With a prankster like Banksy it’s tough to tell, though the artist and filmmaker recently insisted that the whole film is “100% true” in an interview with AJ Schnack.

I guess this latest “Gift Shop” controversy, first reported last night by the New York Times, lends some credence to his claims. Filmmaker Joachim Levy says that he worked with Guetta as a producer and editor on “Life Remote Control,” but was unfairly left out of the credits of “Exit Through the Gift Shop.”

“‘I feel it was — how do you say? — if you write a 200-page book, and someone takes 50 pages of your book and just puts it somewhere else, and they don’t even credit you, they don’t even ask your permission,’ he said. Not only did Banksy ignore his existence, he said, he took his footage out of context.”

Banksy’s camp issued a statement claiming it’s the first they’ve heard of Levy and they’re looking into it. But what may ultimately be more interesting than this tiff over credit is the concrete information about the film’s production which could come to light as a result. For instance, the Times piece reveals one heretofore undiscovered nugget: that Banksy “licensed” the “Life Remote Control” footage from Guetta, which certainly suggest some sort of business relationship between the two men.

It’s also interesting to hear Levy’s take on whether or not Mr. Brainwash is legit and independent artist or a living prank by Banksy. He told the Times, “I know what he did with Thierry. He turned him into a living art piece. It’s not a hoax, definitely not.” Unless of course Levy himself has been hired by Bansky to prop up “Gift Shop”‘s image as a real documentary. Which just raises more questions…

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”

Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”

But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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Draught Pick

Sam Adams “Keeps It Brockmire”

All New Brockmire airs Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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From baseball to beer, Jim Brockmire calls ’em like he sees ’em.


It’s no wonder at all, then, that Sam Adams would reach out to Brockmire to be their shockingly-honest (and inevitably short-term) new spokesperson. Unscripted and unrestrained, he’ll talk straight about Sam—and we’ll take his word. Check out this new testimonial for proof:

See more Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC, presented by Samuel Adams. Good f***** beer.

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