Best Local Film Honcho

Henry S. Rosenthal

Good movie producers are as adept at constructing myths about themselves as they are at getting films made. Rosenthal loves showing off his collection of two-headed calves (two, at the moment) and his enormous semicircular desk emblazoned with the initials JB (which he claims belonged to a certain funk and soul pioneer). As producer, consultant, and benefactor, Rosenthal has lent his insights and talents to countless independent films by Lynn Hershman, Jon Jost, Jon Moritsugu, Caveh Zahedi, Gregg Araki, and other rabble-rousers. A member of the seminal '70s punk band Crime, Rosenthal champions the subversive, the confrontational, the political, and the deviant. But he's also spent considerable time over the years talking naive, idealistic filmmakers out of blowing their savings on quixotic projects. “Filmmaking is a soul-crushing endeavor, and I try to protect people from pain whenever I can,” Rosenthal explains. A bit weary himself these days from the narrative-film wars, Rosenthal is producing a documentary portrait of Austin singer/songwriter and cult fave Daniel Johnston.

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