Director Grant James picked up a copy of my first book, Brea or Tar, in 2018. Turns out he was hunting for a story to option for a short. 'You Too,' a story about less than thrilled residents of the Hotel Cecil who witnessed U2's performance in Downtown Los Angeles in March 1987 was just what Grant was looking for.
The story pits the wits of two hustlers--one a seasoned self-destructivist and the other a resilient optimist--as they bargain to create meaning around this most strange and unwelcome intrusion into their urban habitat. Grant and I reworked the dialogue to suit the rhythms of the screen and the constraints of the soundstage in Panorama City where You Too was shot.
We were very fortunate to have Producer Lindha Narvaez onboard. Her expertise in wrangling cats gave us the freedom to recreate 1987 in dusty miniature.
Vance Burberry was the final piece in the puzzle. A veteran DP, Vance has shot more music videos than we care to count. Of chief importance were his renowned visual sensibility, technical skill, ability to wrangle the project's 16mm film stock, and a long-ago credit shooting the original U2 concert on which You Too was based.
Released in 2021, You Too was an official selection of the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival and the Annapolis Film Festival.
You can watch the full project below.