For Madmen Only
Comedy guru Del Close, mentor to everyone from Bill Murray to Tina Fey, sets out to write his autobiography for DC Comics. As he leads us through sewers, mental wards, and his peculiar talent for making everyone famous but himself, Close emerges as a personification of the creative impulse itself. He's a muse with BO and dirty needles, offering transcendence despite (or because of) the trail of wreckage behind him. In this at once hilarious and poignant look at the life of the godfather of improv comedy, Del Close, Festival alum Heather Ross (Girls on The Wall) tracks the trailblazer from “human torch” sideshow act to his influential and contentious rise at The Second City, mentoring such greats as Bill Murray, John Candy, and Tina Fey, among many others. Inspired by his semi-autobiographical DC Comics anthology Wasteland, the film delves into the inner workings of Close’s wacky mind through inspired reenactments, archival clips, and interviews with such devotees as Bob Odenkirk, Tim Meadows, and Adam McKay. The result is a lively, multi-layered picture of a man and his mission, riding on the edges of genius and despair, creativity, and insanity. Heather Ross said of her second feature documentary, “We knew that to make the definitive movie about this icon/unknown, we would need to take the same kind of creative risks that he was famous for. As someone known for breaking down genres and experimenting with form—not to mention playing fast and loose with the truth - we decided to apply the same ideas to our film and try to break new ground with the documentary genre. This resulted in constructing a set of scenes imagining the creative process behind WASTELAND, Del’s comic book autobiography.” Danielle DiGiacomo, Head of Content for Utopia, said, "For Madmen Only is a singular film reflecting a singular man - a creative and joyful exploration of one of the lesser sung heroes in all of comedy; we at Utopia can't wait for viewers to be taken on a much needed escape into hilarity and genius."
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