Prior to the festival premiere of his new film, “The One I Love,” the multihyphenate stopped by the Variety Studio to offer what he says is valuable advice for a young filmmaker.
“I’m gonna say something controversial here,” he said with a relaxed but serious gaze. “And this is no slight to all my friends who distribute movies, (but) the most important part of making a movie is making sure that film streams on Netflix.”
Duplass, who also stars in FX’s “The League,” said his first feature accidentally made its way to the streaming service years ago and it was, without question, the greatest stroke of fortune in his career.
“Getting yourself into theaters is great,” he added, “getting a big VOD pop is great, but my first movie made a grand total of $220,000 in theaters but about 5 million people have seen it on Netflix because they can click on it and they can try it out. And so I really recommend to get your get goddamn movie on Netflix. It made my career.”
As for his new Sundance project, which co-stars “Mad Men” actress Elisabeth Moss and was dubbed “superb” by Variety’s Geoff Berkshire, Duplass (who also exec produced along with his brother Jay, a frequent collaborator, writer Justin Lader and director Charlie McDowell) said he didn’t mind playing mentor “slash big brother” to new director McDowell.
“I am a 142 years old and I have been here as many times,” he laughed. “The experience I have is mostly from a structural standpoint, and a 30,000 foot view of ‘how do you get a movie made’ with your vision intact and make the best piece of art you can with the available materials.”
Co-starring Ted Danson (who is McDowell’s stepfather), “The One I Love” is playing in the Premieres section at Sundance.