THE SKIN I'M IN

April 26, 2012, 7:00 P.M.

The Ray Stark Family Theatre, SCA 108, George Lucas Building, USC School of Cinematic Arts Complex, 900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007

Cinematheque108 and Twentieth Century Fox invite you and a guest to a special screening of

The Skin I'm In

Produced, directed, shot, and edited by Broderick Fox
 
Followed by a Q&A with SCA Alumnus Broderick Fox (Production MFA '99, Critical Studies '03, and Critical Studies Post-Doc visiting faculty '04)
 
Moderated by SCA Vice Dean, Dr. Michael Renov
 
7:00 P.M. on Thursday, April 26th, 2012
 
The Ray Stark Family Theatre
George Lucas Building, SCA 108
900 W. 34th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90007
 
FREE ADMISSION. OPEN TO THE PUBLIC.
 

About The Skin I'm In

In 2005, Fox was found unconscious in the Berlin subway tracks with major contusions to the head from the fall and a lethal blood alcohol level of 0.47. Strangers pulled him from the tracks, giving him a second chance at life, and propelling him on a journey of body, mind, and spirit that has become The Skin I'm In.

The film is both intimate and expansive, traveling from Berlin to British Columbia, New Jersey to Japan, Kenya to Los Angeles, documenting the collaboration between Fox, Canadian First-Nations artist Rande Cook, and African-American tattoo artist Zulu to produce Fox’s full back tattoo. The documentary uses this physical transformation as the departure point and thread for a story of bodily abuse, experimentation, and redemption.

It also creatively and thematically reveals the multiple selves that young gay men (and arguably all marginalized individuals) create to manage both their socially-demanded roles and their true personal desires. Fox shares a journey that integrates the often-contradictory personas into one messy, imperfect, but content “self.”

The film is a powerful example of how the personal can speak to an evolving global social awareness, crossing boundaries to create a more integrated understanding of human experience. In a social-media culture where the once political act of self-expression has become a digital commonplace, the project asks there still space for the “I” and for “identity” to matter and to register as access points to larger sociopolitical understanding and social change.

Fox hopes that this film will impact others who have their own internal battles—be they around issues of sexuality, past trauma, creative frustration, addiction, or cultural ostracism—revealing that there is life, purpose, art, even momentary states of grace, beyond these cultural and private wars.

Provided courtesy of the filmmaker. Not rated. Running time: 92 minutes.

To learn more about the film and to view the trailer, click here.

Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/SkinImInMovie

 

About the Filmmaker

Broderick spent several childhood years in Tokyo and his twenties between Berlin and Los Angeles, making his creative perspective markedly international. His award winning narrative, experimental, and documentary works have screened internationally—theatrically, on television, at film festivals, and online. Tak for Alt: Survival of a Human Sprit (1997) won the Dore Schary Award and received special recognition from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Love, Death, & Cars (1999) premiered at the Palm Springs International Film Festival and aired on PBS KQED San Francisco. Things Girls Do... (2001) premiered at Outfest and continues to play and stream internationally. I Knew Him (2007) was a finalist for the Iris Prize, the world’s largest prize for work representing or advocating for LGBT individuals and has been selected by RAINN.org as an official PSA campaign video. His most recent video Home (2009) premiered in Berlin at the Globians World and Culture Documentary Festival and continues to play the festival circuit. Fox’s screenwriting work has won or received finalist and semifinalist nods in over 20 national competitions. He is also a professor of Media Arts and Culture at Occidental College, teaching courses in both theory and production. His book, Documentary Media: History - Theory - Practice is now out through Pearson Press.

Director's Statement

Coming out as a teenager in the early 1990’s was a strange and frightening time. It was the height of the AIDS crisis and was suffused with news of Jeffrey Dahmer coercing boys my own age home from the mall and dismembering them. My survival mechanism was to come out on principle but to physically shut down my sexuality. Angered by the hypocrisy of organized religion, I also eschewed any pursuit of spirituality. This led to years of living purely through my intellect and achieving great success on paper, all the while exacting a litany of self-abuse until my body finally reached its breaking point in the Berlin subway on July 23, 2005.

Making The Skin I'm In is proving to be an unflinching chapter in a series of autobiographical works I call “embodied media,” as I use not only subjectivity but also the physical body to destabilize assumptions about sex, gender, and sexuality and to break the often-strangling silence of shame.

In a social-media culture where the once political act of self-expression has become a digital commonplace, is there still space for the “I” and for “identity” to matter and to register as access points to larger sociopolitical understanding and social change?

Independent from large crews, controlling producers, and market pressures, my autobiographical works afford me an artisanal, auteurist approach rarely possible in the media arts. My work at once embraces and subverts documentary conventions, utilizing three-dimensional characters, emotional storytelling, and a range of unexpected aesthetic modes to permit audiences to access and identify deeply with challenging perspectives and subject matters traditionally excised from mainstream media.

It is my hope that this film will impact others who have their own internal battles—be they around issues of sexuality, past trauma, creative frustration, addiction, or cultural ostracism—revealing that there is life, purpose, art, even momentary states of grace, beyond these cultural and private wars.

-- Broderick Fox

About Cinematheque108

Cinematheque108 is an alternative screening series sponsored by the Critical Studies Department at the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts. The series offers a rare selection of events that highlight noteworthy experimental, documentary, and/or foreign films, many of which can not be seen anywhere else. Cinematheque108 is an educational forum that aims to expand understanding of alternative film and media. All screenings are free of charge and open to the pubic.

About Parking

The USC School of Cinematic Arts is located at 900 W. 34th St., Los Angeles, CA 90007. Parking passes may be purchased for $8.00 at USC Entrance Gate #5, located at the intersection of W. Jefferson Blvd. & McClintock Avenue. We recommend parking in outdoor Lot M or V, or Parking Structure D, at the far end of 34th Street. Please note that Parking Structure D cannot accommodate tall vehicles such as SUVs. Metered parking is also available along Jefferson Blvd.

Contact Information

Name: Alessandro Ago
Email: aago@cinema.usc.edu