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When I spoke with David Burris on December 18, 2014, one of the things I most wanted to talk to him about was getting the accents right in THE WORLD MADE STRAIGHT. It’s set in North Carolina, and he used actors from such far-flung places as Australia, England, and Los Angeles. We went on to discuss the presence of the past in the south, how he found the right regional music to complement the story, and why singer/composer Steve Earl was perfect to play the villain of the piece,
He also told me how a pinky swear in New Zealand led to a film in and about North Caroline, and where to find grits in South Africa
We ended with a shout-out to his mother, Jane, who first gave him Ron Rash’s book and told him it would be a great movie. As a good son, and smart filmmaker, he agreed, and went on to tell the story of how he first came to realize what a great judge of books his mother was and is.
THE WORLD MADE STRAIGHT, based on the novel of the same name by Ron Rash, is a poetic, savage film about the presence of the past asserting itself in the present as events in 1970s North Carolina are tinged with the repercussions of the Civil War battles fought there a century before. Noah Wylie plays Leonard, a disgraced schoolteacher turned drug dealer who sees his own chance at redemption by saving a high-school dropout from giving up on himself. The film co-stars Jeremy Irvine, Minka Kelley, Adelaide Clemens, Haley Joel Osment, and Steve Earl. Burris directed from a script by Shane Danielsen.
Click on the link to listen to the interview (15:50) THE WORLD MADE STRAIGHT — David Burris Interview on PRX.