Adam Irving: Off the Rails The new documentary Off the Rails tells the story of Darius McCollum, a 51-year-old New Yorker with a lifelong love for -- and encyclopedic knowledge of -- the area's transit system. He loves driving MTA trains and buses, and knows how to access them with ease. The only problem? He's never actually been an employee of the MTA. McCollum, who has been diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, has never hurt anyone during his transit escapades. He even picks up and drops off passengers as scheduled. But his behavior has landed him in prison 32 times. That story captivated 34-year-old first-time filmmaker Adam Irving, a Canadian who, several years ago, began a PhD in film studies at the University of Texas. Before he finished, Irving decided academia wasn't for him. He moved to LA, where at first, the only job he could land was working as a cameraman for reality shows. When Irving went to make the jump from reality show cameraman to documentarian, he found he wasn't the first person to be interested in McCollum for a documentary. In fact, Irving was the 27th filmmaker to approach him. He tells us why he succeeded where 26 others failed, and how his film Off the Rails evolved as he was making it -- going from a fun and quirky caper movie to something that delves into more of the issues of an overworked and under-resourced criminal justice system. Irving also shares how he avoided what he sees as common mistakes for first-time filmmakers and why he's so committed to pushing an awards campaign for his film, even if he has to pay for it himself. Off the Rails is screening at multiple festivals and opens theatrically in Los Angeles on November 4.
Elif Batuman: The Idiot Selin, the heroine of Batuman’s autobiographical first novel, The Idiot, is an 18-year-old Harvard freshman of Turkish-American descent. Set in 1995, the novel observes the rise of internet culture.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein faces an angry town hall crowd Senator Dianne Feinstein faced an angry crowd at her town hall in Los Angeles Thursday. The anger came from her would-be supporters -- people on the left. Also, a new bill wants to make it illegal for local police to cooperate with the feds who are targeting marijuana growers.
Bassem Youssef and Sara Taksler on 'Tickling Giants' Known as the "Jon Stewart of Egypt," Bassem Youssef hosted a satirical news show that was the first of its kind in the Middle East. The show was immensely popular, until the military-backed government forced Youssef off the air and out of the country. Youssef and director Sara Taksler tell us about their documentary Tickling Giants, which profiles Youssef’s leap from heart surgeon to super star satirist.
Symbols of protest, lighting up EDM festivals The Women's March made a huge impact, in part because of its widely worn pink knitted "pussyhat." Does the March for Science need its own unifying symbol? Lighting designer Steve Lieberman is "the man behind the lights" for the country's leading electronic music festivals and nightclubs. He talks about his early experiences with rave culture, and what it takes to spark the excitement of today's EDM fans.