My pictures are about a search for a moment—a perfect
moment. To me the most powerful moment in the whole
process is when everything comes together and there is
that perfect, beautiful, still moment. And for that instant,
my life makes sense.”

Gregory Crewdson

Photograph © Gregory Crewdson – Untitled (Ophelia)

Filmed over a decade, beginning in 2000, Gregory Crewdson: Brief Encounters provides an unparalleled view of the moment of creation of his images. It also reveals the life-story behind the work – through frank reflections on his life and career, including the formative influences of his psychologist father and his childhood fascination with the work of Diane Arbus. Childhood fears and ideals, adult anxieties and desires, the influences of pop-culture all combine to form who we are, and for Crewdson, motivate his work.

Gregory Crewdson: Brief Encounters follows the acclaimed photographer’s decade-long quest to create a series of haunting, surreal, and stunningly elaborate portraits of small-town American life. His photographs are like single-frame movies – partly because each composition brims with narrative, partly because he uses cinematic tools such as special effects, hundreds of lights, and huge crews of technicians. As we travel with him – from first inspirations, through countless creative and logistical obstacles, to the instant where all the elements coalesce in a single perfect moment – we realize that, despite their vast scale, Crewdson’s images grow from his most intimate dreams and fantasies.

There is no specific backstory, no before-and-after to Gregory Crewdson’s images, simply the moment that lends itself to mystery and intrigue. Hundreds of movie lights combine with the setting sun in a perfect moment of illumination.

Producer, Director and Cinematographer: Ben Shapiro
2012 / HD / Color / 16:9 (1.78:1) / 79 min

The film premiers tonight (March 10, 2012) at the SXSW Festival in Austin, Texas.

The trailer & more infos can be found at

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