Run Time: 84 minutes
"We've only just begun …" so begins one of the many hit songs written by Paul Williams, the hit-maker of the 70s. After winning multiple Grammys, Emmys, and Academy Awards® as a songwriter for such stars as Elvis, The Carpenters, David Bowie, Barbara Streisand, and Kermit The Frog, and after more than 50 appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, Williams died much too young at the peak of his career. Or, so it was thought. Director and Williams fan Stephen Kessler ("Vegas Vacation") found Williams alive and well and performing a gig in Winnipeg, Manitoba. From there Kessler followed Williams as he toured performing his hit songs, meeting fans, and working as a drug rehabilitation speaker. PAUL WILLIAMS STILL ALIVE is the comic and endearing look at one of the world's great songwriters, entertainers, and characters. A candid journey for both Kessler, who attempts to discover the hero he always admired, and for Williams, still on a journey for redemption from his past drug-fueled downfall, this documentary provides behind-the-scenes glimpses and interviews into the man everyone knows but never remembers. As honest, engaging, and entertaining as Williams himself, this documentary is "An Old Fashioned Love Song" to the man who now is just happy not to be "Gone Forever." – T.W.
Sunday, April 01, 2012 at 7:20 PM
Nesnadny + Schwartz Documentary Film Competition
Nicolas Duval-Adassovsky, Laurent Zeitoun, Yann Zenou
Olivier Nakache, Éric Toledano
François Cluzet, Omar Sy
A graduate of Stanford's writing program, Stephen Kessler was on the cusp of stardom thanks to directing Chevy Chase in "Vegas Vacation." Ironically, it was his film, "The Independent," about a B-List movie director, that really got him noticed. Also, he's still very much alive.
"Vegas Vacation" (1997), "The Independent" (2000), PAUL WILLIAMS STILL ALIVE (2011)
Paul Williams Still Alive