Rat Film director Theo Anthony took some time this week to talk with Cultured Vultures. Rat Film will open in limited release on September 15 with a roll-out to follow.
Thanks for joining Cultured Vultures today. How are things treating you?
Things are good, a bit busy at the moment balancing travel with shooting, but things are really good.
Rat Film is opening in New York, Baltimore, and Chicago this weekend.
Yep, we’ll be opening there this Friday with some more cities coming up towards the end of the month through October.
How did you come up with the idea to explore rats as a way to look at the history of Baltimore?
The film arose out of a really sincere interest to try to better understand the city of Baltimore and my own place in it. The rat is an incredible vector and vessel that cuts across a number of people and places and histories. The rat itself transgresses boundaries in a really fascinating way, but they also literally live in those boundaries–whether they’re walls, fences, or alleyways. That trajectory was a flexible and mobile way to advance the film’s inquiry. In terms of the structure of the film, the crucial aspect to the process was that I let it grow and grow with no expectation of what final form it would take. It’s a film, and a filmmaker, that was learning, is still learning, as it goes.
What is something that surprised you the most as you the most as you were making this documentary?
One of my biggest anxieties making this hyper-local film about Baltimore was that no one outside of Baltimore would get it. It’s been absolutely amazing and humbling to watch this film travel the world and see audiences connect with it. There is something about the story of Baltimore that transcends its own borders, and I’ve been grateful to watch the conversation grow that comes from that.
Thank you again for your time.
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