The Cleveland International Film Festival promotes artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition to enrich the life of the community.
March 28, 2019 | posted by Lara Klaber in Filmmakers
Every career takes a winding road, and for Director Amy Goldstein, hers began with an interest in photography. A job running the photography studio of Jean Pagliuso, famous for her fashion--and poultry--photographs, allowed for the perfect opportunity.
“I wanted to learn to photograph the fluidity of gender, nonconformity in the most unlikely places,” Goldstein recalls. “I shot a butch lesbian in a tutu disrobing on top of a bulldozer in the ruins of the Westside highway.”
The photos were published all over New York City. While working weekends at the photography studio, an interesting habit of Goldstein’s caught the attention of Pagliuso.
“She [Pagliuso] noticed that I was writing on my photographs and printing them sequentially, as if I was trying to tell a story,” Goldstein says. “She encouraged me to go to NYU Grad Film School. I would never have believed in myself to that extent if it was not for Jean.”
Fast forward, and Goldstein is bringing “Kate Nash: Underestimate the Girl” to audiences everywhere. The film follows Nash’s story as a brief UK pop sensation through her arduous journey of making it as a woman in the music industry.
“When I first met Kate, she had just performed at Coachella with pink hair, a pink vagina as a backdrop, and her all-girl band dressed in pink,” Goldstein says. “She had gone from being a teenage platinum pop star to being dropped by her label to playing small venues to making it without a label all the way to Coachella.”
With the current documentary landscape flooded with tragic stories of female musicians like Amy Winehouse, Janis Joplin, and Nina Simone, Goldstein purposefully sought out a female story of “redemption rather than despair.”
“It is worth it to make art, to connect with a community, and to stay true to what you value,” says Goldstein. “Also, if you are a girl and dream of becoming an artist--whether a musician, a filmmaker, a painter--watching this film will hopefully inspire you to commit. It is possible to do it on your own terms and it can be a positive and rich life.”
Next for Goldstein are several projects, including a stop at her alma mater while on the festival circuit.
“We are going to film at Hampshire College, which is on the verge of closing,” says Goldstein. “The students have pulled off the longest sit-in at a college known for its protest culture – they’ve been sitting in the president’s office since January 31st.”
No question, Goldstein seems to be the perfect fit to tell more stories of the power of owning your convictions and standing your ground.
PHOTO: Amy Goldstein is a director, producer, and screenwriter. In addition to directing feature films, she has also directed music videos for Rod Stewart and television series, such as Lifetime’s “Veronica Clare.”
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