VOD Spotlight: Alex Karpovsky (“Girls”)February 18, 2013
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Writer/director/actor Alex Karpovsky, a star of the smash HBO series Girls, has appeared in films such as Tiny Furniture, Sleepwalk With Me, and Beeswax. In early 2013, he will be seen in the Coen Brothers’ new feature Inside Llewyn Davis, as well as Supporting Characters (a January 2013 Tribeca Film release). As writer-director, his prior films include Woodpecker and The Hole Story.
Tribeca Film is presenting Karpovsky’s latest films, Red Flag and Rubberneck, on VOD and available nationwide on February 19, 2013.
In Rubberneck, Boston research scientist Paul (Alex Karpovsky) still lusts after his beautiful coworker Danielle (Jamie Ray Newman) months after a weekend fling, nurturing his fantasies with the occasional polite exchange at work. But once she starts dating another scientist at their lab, his infatuation quickly turns into obsession – and he finds himself unable to control his desires.
Red Flag is a laugh-out-loud road trip comedy, starring Alex Karpovsky as himself, a newly-single indie filmmaker who hits the road with an old friend (Onur Tukel) to promote one of his films. As the pair travels from one half-empty theater to the next, Karpovsky is pursued by an adoring fan (Jennifer Prediger) who drives them into an exceptionally uncomfortable love triangle.
Nick: In what order should we watch these movies [thriller Rubberneck and comedy Red Flag]?
Alex: That is a tough question. When I see a comedy, there is an expectation that the rest of the night will be comedic. I think I would like people to watch the thriller, Rubberneck, first, then finish with the comedy, and you will love them.
Nick: In Red Flag, how much of a departure is your character Alex from the real Alex?
Alex: That is a good question. You know, the similarities and differences, it is hard to quantify it. I mean, I definitely harbor a lot of the insecurities and overall issues that the main character in the film has, but what I am trying to do is amplify them for comedic and dramatic effect.
Nick: The death anxiety your character has boils it down to “ready to die, ready to love.” Is he saying that he has hit rock bottom?
Alex: He feels an epiphany and his epiphany is that a lot of the main problems and fears that he is negotiating on a daily level, he discovers that all of his fears are a reverberation of a death and tragedy.
He feels like if he were in relationships, specifically if he got married, then a lot of his drive and ambition would plateau and that would be a form of death. So once he feels like there will be some sort of good forces and some obliteration of the shackles that have bound him subconsciously --he will be a new man who is in a position to really transition or transform himself.
Alex: What was your question again?
Nick: If you have to hit rock bottom in order to find that...
Alex: Right. Yeah. For him to reach that epiphany, I think he also had to reach rock bottom.
Nick: Rubberneck -- which I loved -- I heard someone else was cast first. How did you end up in the role of Paul?
Alex: It took months to find someone that we were thrilled with. On the fourth day of production, [the actor formerly cast in the role] had a family crisis, and he had to leave the movie abruptly and we had to keep going, otherwise, all our money would evaporate. So I just did it. I stepped in and tried to fill in the shoes that he started creating.
Nick: Tell me about the character?
Alex: Paul has anxiety problems and anxious episodes that are a reverberation for something much more deeply buried.
I am not sure what Paul knows. He is not fully able to come to terms with the root of his anxiety and all the issues that he is nurturing. His obsession is just one symptom of what is underlying.
Nick: Are you having a great time being on the HBO series Girls?
Alex: It is incredible fun. I have so much pride in the show. It is really challenging in a good way to kind of, you know, keep everything engaging and I love collaborating with the rest of our cast. It is a total dream. I love it.
Nick: Can you tell me a little bit about your part in the upcoming Coen Brothers film, Inside Llewyn Davis.
Alex: I play a character named Marty Green. It takes place in 1961 around the downtown Greenwich Village folk music scene. Marty Green is an archaeology professor at Columbia who is very curious about what the kids are up to downtown.
Nick: If you were given a blank check tomorrow, what story would you tell?
Alex: Gosh, you know, that depends on what story I want to tell next and I do not know what that is. If you put a gun to my head, I probably want to make a very surreal, semi-absurd, lyrical comedy about a troubled man slowly coming to terms with who he wants to become.
Red Flag and Rubberneck is on VOD and available nationwide on February 19, 2013.
Nick DeNinno Nick DeNinno is a producer based in Carlsbad, CA with practical experience in all phases of new media, content development, video production, television, and film. DeNinno is also an adviser and a programming resource to many universities who operate student-run television stations. DeNinno has launched several emerging and web television channels including National Lampoon's College Channel, Burly TV on TBS and Toga!. He is a member of the Producers Guild. @nickdeninno | @nickodw.
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