“I originally met Martin Scorsese when he was still a film student at the New York University. He used to come to my film screenings. But our real friendship began when he made his first feature film, Who’s That Knocking at My Door. My brother Adolfas, Shirley Clarke and myself, we joined Marty in a two-hour radio program to plug the opening of his film. We had great time doing it. I still have the tape of it.
I was asked to make a five to ten minute film about Marty to introduce his retrospective. As it happened, Marty was shooting The Departed at that time. I asked him if I could follow him for a week or two, and he said yes. So that’s how this film happened. Sebastian, my son, joined me with a second camera. I did a brief version, and proceeded with a longer one. Since I was very busy at that time with other projects, I asked Benn Northover, a good friend, to help me with editing it – I had some 15 hours of footage – and we all had a great time working on it because we all love Marty! It’s a chamber kind of movie, a personal tribute to a friend." –Jonas Mekas
Jonas Mekas was born in 1922 in Semeniskiai, Lithuania. He currently lives and works in New York. In 1944, Jonas Mekas and his brother, Adolfas, were taken by the Nazis and imprisoned in a forced labor camp in Nazi Germany for eight months. After the War, he studied philosophy at the University of Mainz from 1946-48 and at the end of 1949, he emigrated with his brother to the U.S. settling in Williamsburg, Brooklyn in New York. Two weeks after his arrival, he borrowed the money to buy his first Bolex 16-mm camera and began to record moments of his life. He discovered avant-garde film at venues such as Amos Vogel’s pioneering cinema 16, and he began screening his own films in 1953. He has been one of the leading figures of American avant-garde filmmaking or the “New American Cinema,” as he dubbed it in the late ‘50s, playing various roles: in 1954, he became editor and chief of Film Culture; in 1958 he began writing his “Movie Journal” column for the Village Voice; in 1962 he co-founded… read more