Sita Sundays @ Symphony Space

Sita Sings the Blues plays the next 3 Sundays at Symphony Space in New York:

Sun, Jan 31 at 5:30 pm
Sun, Feb 7 at 5:30 pm
Sun, Feb 14 at 1 pm and 5:30 pm

I will be doing Q and A’s after all shows. Notice there are two screenings on Valentine’s Day, because what better to show on the evilest holiday ever devised than the Greatest Break-Up Story Ever Told? It’s the perfect non-date movie!



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Frunch: The Free Culture Lunch #8

This Friday, January 22, 2 pm, Soy & Sake @ 47 7th Ave S (at Commerce St) in New York’s West Village. Open to anyone who is into Free Culture, Free Software, Free Speech, Intellectual Freedom, anti-censorship, etc.

We do this every week now! And it’s more fun than the other kind of “frunch“.

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WNYC today at 2pm, 93.9 fm

Smackdown: Open Source or Closed Doors? (click here to listen)

The director of Sita Sings the Blues, Nina Paley, had to pay $50,000 to use old songs in her animation movie. She then put the movie online for free and turned herself into a free-culture activist. Composer Jaron Lanier was a digital pioneer in the ’90s, but in his new book he claims that open-source is destroying creativity and fostering vicious behavior. They join us to debate the pros and cons of free love in art-making.

Sita Sings the Blues site
More about Jaron Lanier [NY Times]

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“The Revolution Will Be Animated”

An excellent new 16-minute documentary by Marine Lormant Sebag about Free Culture, Sita Sings the Blues, and me. Please watch it – it’s good and it explains a lot!

The Revolution Will Be Animated from Marine Lormant Sebag on Vimeo.

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Flooding with Love for the Kid

Sita Sings the Blues isn’t the only feature film made by one person in a small Manhattan apartment. Zachary Oberzan‘s Flooding With Love For the Kid was made in an even smaller apartment (220 square feet) and far lower budget ($95.51). (This budget doesn’t include any copyright clearances of course – don’t tell First Blood author David Morrell.)

It suspenseful and watchable from beginning to end. It has life and soul. It’s interactive – the audience knows they’re looking through the film’s surface when they engage with the story. I laughed a lot, but it’s not a comedy.

Zack did a post-screening Q and A, and sounded uncannily like myself (“I didn’t choose the book; the book chose me”). Like Sita, Flooding With Love was not storyboarded or carefully planned; it relied on the source text for structure. The contrasts between the films are notable too: Sita is a “feminine” story, from a woman’s point of view, made almost entirely by one woman; Flooding With Love is a masculine, one-man action story. If you miss all the battle scenes I omitted from Sita, all the warrior issues and male bonding that take up most Ramayana texts, you may find satisfaction in Flooding With Love. There are many other reasons to watch it; it’s a singular achievement, I can almost guarantee you’ve never seen anything like it before.

Hopefully it will screen again soon. It’s not yet available online, but it should be.

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