Section: Film
Title: Searching for Beethoven
Artist: Sam Dehghani
Importance: This is the first time I can remember a guy taking his student loan money from college, and rather than buying beer, he makes a movie.
Searching for Beethoven

This is the touching story of a horrible castrating mother forcing her son to play the violin because the family name is Beethoven.

10 Questions and a lightning round with Sam Dehghani

1) Your blurb on the web site says that this story is autobiographical in its roots. How has your mom or other family members reacted to this movie?
The reaction from my mom has been for the most part positive. Most of my family members have been telling people who've seen the film that I have a very imaginative personality. I've always found the relationships between parents and children very interesting; especially son's and mother's, because they're almost always characterized by misunderstandings.

2) What was the final price tag for this movie?
The budget of the film was about $8,500, give or take a few dollars.

3) You say that you took the prize money from a Chapman University film festival to make this film. Where did you get the money for the rest of this?
The rest of the money came form my college loans. I used the money that was sanctioned for my living expenses. I wasn't living very well during the two years it took to make the film, in fact, I had to move back in with my parents.

4) How did you react to seeing your masterpiece crammed down to 5 frames a second in Real Video?
Very painful.

5) How has the reaction been, to your movie, since you’ve had it on the Internet?
The reaction has been very decisive. People either like it or they hate it. I think some people might be offended by how I use religion in the film, but I think if they look very closely they'll notice that it is actually a very moral tale. In the end neither the son or the mother wins because both of their motives are flawed.

6) You’re working through a lot of heavy psyche stuff in this movie. Wouldn’t it be easier or cheaper just to go to a shrink?
In the end a shrink will be more expensive and probably less therapeutic.

7) You sound like you’re really angry at Hollywood. Are you condemning yourself to a life of maxing out credit cards and eating mac and cheese, by pissing off Hollywood?

The only problem I have with Hollywood is how they view the audience. People will go to the movies regardless of whether a film is bad or good. It's an escape for most people, much like sporting events. So, I believe if that's the case why not put the best product out there possible. The audiences are a lot smarter than Hollywood gives them credit for.

8) You say that you’re trying to make stories about, "the common man and woman trying to make good in a world where virtue is a four-letter word." What movie other than your own do you feel is a good example of this feeling.
Any film by Frank Capra. Most any film by Woody Allen, most of his characters are heavily flawed, which is fantastic and real. Any of the films by the Italian neo-realists, The Bicycle Thief for example.

9) What else do you want people to know about you or your movie?
Making a film is a collaborative effort and I had many talented people in many departments working with me. Whatever value people see in this film it is a credit to them.

10) What did I forget to ask you?

Who is your favorite filmmaker or what is your favorite film? I hate those questions. Thank you for not asking them.

Ready for the Lightning Round?
Favorite Sound? Light rain
Favorite Touch? Anywhere on a women's body
Favorite Smell? Spring
boxers or briefs? Boxers
Dinette Set or trip to Europe? Dinette set, more practical.

See the Movie Searching for Beethoven on filmfilm.com