10 Questions With Joseph Lally
The last time I wrote about a Joseph Lally film, it was about a bunch of male models pulling a boy interrupted in Psycho Drama. In his latest creation, Earth Magic for SHOWstudio, Lally once again puts his eerie, artistic, slightly violent, thrilling touch on a piece that features Daphne Guinness, Jamie Bochert, Sebastian Sauve, Travis Hanson, Erik Sage, Kenzie Roth, Justin Passmore, Max Silberman, and Petter Hedman. Here, Lally answers 10 questions, from meeting with Guinness to working with models.
1. Sachin Bhola (SB): What’s cool about your films is that there’s a general understanding of what’s going on, but the message is still open to interpretation – what story were you trying to tell with Earth Magic?
Joseph Lally (JL): Earth Magic is based on the premise that there are invisible creatures that may be controlling or influencing our behavior.
2. SB: How did your relationship with Daphne Guinness come about?
JL: I met her in L.A. by a swimming pool. She was dressed much like Breakfast at Tiffany‘s midday and I was enchanted. We bonded in a few minutes.
3. SB: You once told me “I use models because Old Hollywood was based on iconic faces; now we live in era of boring geeks and social network.” That’s always stuck with me. Who are some models you’d like to work with in the future?
JL: I stay more open now to who comes into my life the moment I am filming and if they seem to fit in the film project. More recently, I am using models and people who have no training or aspirations. For actors, lately the ones who seriously study acting have bailed out on me; either they thought the role [was] dark or they are self-conscious and frozen about leaping into acting. I had seven actors who were excited by [the] script, then each one bailed out saying [the] material [was] too dark (which is an overestimation on their part) – and what are they teaching in acting school? To play audience-friendly roles? It is quite something; younger people today are so fearful and locked in corporate manner, especially the ones who go on about truth in acting and their serious intentions.
4. SB: From films to fashion commercials (ex. Prada, H&M), recently video editorials have become really popular. What are some that you admire?
JL: Most of them I find typical and not exciting. I loved Kenneth Anger [for] Missoni and David Lynch’s Dior film and Steven Klein’s brilliant time capsule videos with Amber.
5. Sachin Bhola: If you saw someone wearing “fill in the blank” one more time, you’d punch them in the face.
Joseph Lally: Well, wearing I don’t care, but if one more person tells me how great Michelle Williams is as Monroe I could scream. She must be the most overrated dreary actress of today, and to have her in this movie that looks like a TV movie about a complex brilliant star is a real downer to see people embracing such junk.
6. SB: What’s on your Playlist these days?
JL: Doris Day
7. SB: How did you get started in the business? What advice do you have for people who wanna follow in your footsteps?
JL: I stumbled into this with complete confidence. I never had a portfolio to begin with and never had proper credentials. I merely walked into [the] fashion and film world unafraid of everyone.
8. SB: Your favorite blooper moment from filming?
JL: I actually prefer my mistakes and keep them in.
9. SB: What’s next for you?
JL: All is well, now filming a radical political film about the state of our world.
10. Sachin Bhola: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?
Joseph Lally: It does not. We are here to make images and sounds for others.