Skip to main content

Billy, how did you do it'

USA / Germany, 2005 (MIFF 2005, Documentaries)

Director: Volker Schloendorff, Gisela Grishow

A cinephile's fantasy: a rare meeting between legendary filmmaker Billy Wilder and one of his biggest fans, German director and cinephile Volker Schloendorff ([The Tin Drum], see also [The Ninth Day]). [Billy, How Did You Do It'] takes the form of an extended conversation conducted over a few days: leisurely, entertaining, often revealing, occasionally gossipy, always intriguing. Wilder takes Schloendorff swiftly through his early years before launching into passionate recollections of his American films. If you feel as though you may be robbed of a large chunk of the director's biography - not to mention a couple of dozen remarkable films - be patient; Wilder weaves his childhood, movie apprenticeship and the rise of Nazism into his far ranging reminisce. [Irma la Douce], [The Apartment], [Ninotchka], [Some Like It Hot], [The Seven Year Itch], [Stalag 17], [Sunset Boulevard], [The Lost Weekend], [Double Indemnity]. Wilder draws on his phenomenal recall to detail the making of classic cinema, the stars, their eccentricities and the Hollywood honchos he tamed.
D Volker Schloendorff, Gisela Grishow P Eberhard Junkerdorf WS Kinothek CMBH L German w/English subtitles TD video/B&W, col/180mins

See also...

AMERICAN RULING CLASS

Does America have a ruling class? How does one join it, and should one even want to? Written by Lewis Lapham, American Ruling Class explores the US's most taboo topics: class, power and privilege in ... More »

BETWEEN THE LINES - INDIA'S THIRD GENDER

Following the quest of photographer Anita Khemka, Between the Lines eloquently captures the life and many hardships of India's discarded citizens, the Hijras or eunuchs. ... Living as outcasts on the ... More »

ONCE IN A LIFETIME

“An engrossing account of American soccer's strangest episode — and you don't even have to like football to enjoy it.” - Empire In 1971, Warner Bros mogul Steve Ross found a passion for a ... More »

STOLEN

On St Patrick's Day 1990, 500 million dollars worth of art was stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston - the largest art heist ever. Rebecca Dreyfus' Stolen documents the attempt to ... More »

SARAH SILVERMAN: JESUS IS MAGIC

“Sarah Silverman is the most outrageously funny woman alive. If you want proof of that declaratory sentence, see Jesus Is Magic.” - Rolling Stone From behind the scatterbrain Jewish-American ... More »

TV JUNKIE

“If Capturing the Friedmans, Grizzly Man and Tarnation have spawned a sub-genre of self-documented self-destruction, then TV Junkie is the latest entry.” - Variety Rick Kirkham got his first ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director