Special to AMFM Magazine by Jimmy Willden
Last week, we had the opportunity to sit down with the filmmakers behind one of the more controversial films that didn’t screen at South by Southwest this year. ‘Rebel Rebel Rebel’, a documentary short film, follows self-proclaimed DJ Josh LeCash through nights of debauchery, drugs, alcohol, and living the life of a rock star. But, is he really the rock star the film claims him to be, or is Josh and the whole film itself, a farce?
What follows is our conversation with Director Kyle Schneider and star DJ Josh LeCash. DISCLAIMER: ADULT LANGUAGE.
AMFM: Tell me about ‘Rebel Rebel Rebel.’
KYLE: It’s the study of the phenomenon of DJ culture, and this character, Josh, who gets to run around doing DJ stuff and get paid lots of money for it.
JOSH: I do stuff.
AMFM: You do stuff.
KYLE: He is of that culture of people right now, where kids bring their laptops and iPods to parties and all of a sudden they.re immediate rockstars, and having to deal with the immediacy of it.
AMFM: Is this a documentary, mockumentary…?
AMFM (to Josh): So you’re a DJ then…How long have you been doing that?
JOSH: I’ve been DJ-ing for about six years. I grew up in Miami. I was born in Miami, so I was literally twenty minutes away from night life. So I started going out, and watching DJ’s, and I figured I could do their jobs better than they could. So I just started practicing, and telling people I was a DJ before I even ever was, and then I started getting booked. I became friends with the promoters, and got booked in places I really shouldn’t have.
AMFM: And what did you do before DJ-ing?
JOSH: I was floating around….I….This whole time, no one has actually asked me what I did before I was a DJ. But yeah, I produced a Paris Hilton movie, ‘The Hottie and the Nottie’. Very few people actually saw it in theaters.
KYLE: But they definitely heard about it.
JOSH: Actually, I think Jon Stewart made fun of it one time.
JOSH: So I did that, and did some modeling. Yeah, I was kind of just doing everything.
AMFM: When did you start working on ‘Rebel Rebel Rebel’?
JOSH: A year ago.
KYLE: Yeah, I guess we shot it a year ago, and it took me a few months to edit. The actual shooting time was only ten days of Josh’s schedule, in New York and Los Angeles. So we had never met, and we met in a club where he was DJing. I started talking to him, and meeting with him more. And it just turned into this little slice of life piece.
JOSH: The first time I saw it was at one of the film festivals.
AMFM: What was your reaction to seeing it?
JOSH: I liked the aftermath of what happened, the interviews and all of that. I like where it’s taking me. But I’m not sure if it portrays me one-hundred percent-
KYLE: It portrays you a hundred percent.
JOSH (to Kyle): But I want you guys to do a feature-length documentary, so it really portrays me. I can go crazier than that if you want!
AMFM: So ‘Rebel Rebel Rebel’ screened as part of the RxSM Film Expo?
KYLE: Right. It actually didn’t get into South by Southwest.
AMFM: Why do you think that is?
KYLE: So, there has been an issue with people showing up, and not knowing what to think about it. Afterward, at other festivals, we’ve talked to jurors, and they were split. Some of them didn’t know what to make of it, some people thought it was fake.
AMFM: So on the record, ‘Rebel Rebel Rebel’ is one-hundred percent real?
JOSH: I just want to say….fuck South by Southwest! I feel they are a bunch of film school dropouts who are jealous of what Kyle and I did. I mean, obviously, this movie is based on me, a DJ. It’s mind-boggling that a movie like that didn’t get into a music/film festival. I don’t understand. They’re definitely jealous. It’s like, if you go to film school and the teacher’s fucking bitter the whole time, that’s what it is. They’re probably all just fucking assholes. I will never, ever, ever put anything into South by Southwest. What ever movie I do in the future, if I make a feature, and it gets into Sundance or something, and gets a lot of buzz, and they come to us and tell us they want to put it in their festival…You know what? No! Never! It’s never going to be there.
KYLE: After talking with the jurors, and the screeners who decide if the movie makes it into the festival or not, what they’ve all said about their documentary selections is they’re all purists. And our’s is a hybrid. Being that we cut it in the style of a music video, to songs, etc.
JOSH (to Kyle): What you did, Kyle, was basically make a new genre of documentaries, a new sub-genre. I mean, have you ever seen a documentary do what you did? Sure, the movie isn’t about a starving artist, or an African child starving…I don’t know, everyone’s starving, but supposedly, those are the kind of documentaries people like to go see at film festivals.