Trending
MOST READ
New Sensation: SA’s Austin Mahone and teen pop superstardom

New Sensation: SA’s Austin Mahone and teen pop superstardom

Music: Like the bulk of Austin Mahone’s Instagram account, this one’s a selfie. In a white tank top, hair coifed up real big, Mahone arranges his facial... By Matt Stieb 7/22/2014
Beaches Be Trippin\': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Beaches Be Trippin': Five Texas Coast Spots Worth the Drive

Arts & Culture: Let’s face it, most of us Lone Stars view the Texas coast as a poor man’s Waikiki. Hell, maybe just a poor man’s Panama Beach — only to be used... By Callie Enlow 7/10/2013
Best Brunch

Best Brunch

Best of SA 2013: 4/24/2013
Best Thai Food

Best Thai Food

Best of SA 2012: Tucked off Blanco Road in a bland shopping strip lies a tasty secret that has been keeping SA foodies smiling for over a decade. Once you pass through the rough exterior, you'll... 4/25/2012
Best Food Truck

Best Food Truck

Best of SA 2012: We love food trucks. But, honestly, there are days when the restaurant-on-wheels trend feels completely out of hand. Frequently operators wheeling out new mobile eateries... 4/25/2012
Calendar

Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.

Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

Follow us on Instagram @sacurrent

Print Email

25th Anniversary Issue

Current 25: Once upon a time in San Antonio

1991-1995

Any young, aspiring filmmaker who ever picked up their parents’ VHS camcorder in the early ’90s probably knew there was more that could be done with the camera than simply shooting birthday parties and band concerts. When news broke that San Antonio-born indie filmmaker Robert Rodríguez’s Sundance award-winning debut film El Mariachi was initially made for a measly $7,000 in 1992, ballet recitals and footage of baby’s first steps started disappearing off tapes everywhere and getting recorded over with amateur backyard kung fu scenes. If a 23-year-old from San Antonio could make it to Hollywood, why couldn’t they?

“When El Mariachi came out it gave the Average Joe hope,” said San Antonio Film Festival director Adam Rocha. “I think he inspired, entertained, and educated young and hungry filmmakers.” Twenty years later, few filmmakers have found success in the same manner Rodríguez did. From studying film at the University of Texas at Austin to opening Troublemaker Studios and making film such as Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Sin City, and Machete, Rodríguez is still a rare exception to the rule.

Despite the slim chance that any creative kid can pick up a camera and make it to the big leagues — and despite that two decades later the term “independent film” means nowhere near the same thing it did back when Quentin Tarantino and Kevin Smith were dishing out Reservoir Dogs and Clerks, respectively — Rodríguez is still motivating moviemakers.

“Nowadays the market is flooded with filmmakers with better equipment and resources than Robert Rodríguez ever had,” said local filmmaker Alejandro DeHoyos. “The model for indie films is broken. If filmmakers want to stand out from the crowd they need more than just a fancy camera. They need to be different, have a unique style, and a great story.”

With successful indie films today including Juno, Napoleon Dynamite, and My Big Fat Greek Wedding costing in the range of $400,000 to $6 million and more, the days where ultra-low-budget or no-budget productions could compete on a high level are basically over (unless we’re talking gimmickry like Paranormal Activity, which shot for a reported $15,000). “The film industry has completely evolved,” Rocha said. “Filmmakers today are like bands back in the ’90s. Back then everybody was in one. Nowadays, everybody is a filmmaker. All it takes is a DSLR and a MacBook.”

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus