Oscar-Winning Filmmaker Alexander Payne Is Subject of New Book
A new book about acclaimed filmmaker Alexander Payne (Sideways) is available just as interest in the Oscar-winner is at an all-time high. The critical and commercial success of Payne's 2011 hit The Descendants further confirmed the writer-director's place among the world's leading cinema artists. That's only made anticipation all the greater for his new film Nebraska, which just wrapped principal photography at the end of November.
Omaha-based writer Leo Adam Biga's recently published book, Alexander Payne: His Journey in Film – A Reporter's Perspective 1998-2012, is a compilation of the author-journalist-blogger's decade-and-a-half reporting on Payne and his work. "Long before he arrived as a world-renowned filmmaker I spotted Payne's talent. By the time he completed Citizen Ruth and prepped Election I made him a special focus of my journalism." It's the first comprehensive look at one of cinema's most important figures. Biga takes readers behind-the-scenes to glimpse aspects of Payne's creative process. "Throughout many years of being interviewed, I find Mr. Biga's articles about me to be the most complete and perceptive of any journalist's anywhere," says Payne.
Biga's book is generating strong media buzz, including a recent Indiewire feature, to go along with high praise from industry insiders. Actress Laura Dern, film critic Leonard Maltin, and novelist and public radio host Kurt Andersen have all endorsed the book. Here's what they're saying:
"Alexander is a master. Many say the art of filmmaking comes from experience and grows with age and wisdom but, in truth, he was a master on day one of his first feature. Leo Biga has beautifully captured Alexander's incredible journey in film for us all to savor." – Laura Dern, actress, star of Citizen Ruth
"Alexander Payne is one of American cinema's leading lights. How fortunate we are that Leo Biga has chronicled his rise to success so thoroughly." – Leonard Maltin, film critic and best-selling author
"I'd be an Alexander Payne fan even if we didn't share a Nebraska upbringing: he is a masterly, menschy, singular storyteller whose movies are both serious and unpretentious, delightfully funny and deeply moving. And he's fortunate indeed to have such a thoughtful and insightful chronicler as Leo Biga." – Kurt Andersen, novelist (True Believers) and Studio 360 host
The book reflects the extended period that Biga's covered Payne and the rare access the filmmaker's accorded him. Biga's reported from the set of Sideways and Nebraska. He's conducted exclusive interviews with the writer-director and his collaborators.
Alexander Payne: His Journey in Film collects for the first time Biga's work about the filmmaker in one volume. This is a must-read for any casual fan or serious student of Payne because it provides the arc of his filmmaking journey. That journey has largely played out in his home state, where he's returned to make his new film, Nebraska, which based its production headquarters in Norfolk, Neb. Biga visited the set in mid-November.
The author is available for interviews. He has many anecdotes from his years of interviewing, trailing and interpreting the filmmaker. He's also doing book events.
The book, released through Concierge Marketing Publishing Services and Biga's own Inside Stories, may be previewed at www.facebook.com/LeoAdamBiga.
Alexander Payne: His Journey in Film – A Reporter's Perspective 1998-2012, 304 pages, paperback, ISBN: 978-0-9883293-1-7, $19.95, and eBook formats, $7.95. Available via Amazon, Barnes and Noble and for Kindle and other e-Readers.