FROM Benjamin Statler
'Soaked in Bleach' In May, director Brett Morgen joined us to talk about his Kurt Cobain documentary, Montage of Heck . Cobain's widow, Courtney Love, had approached Morgen to do the project and gave him access to journals and tapes belonging to Cobain. Love was happy with Montage of Heck, but not so much with Soaked in Bleach -- a very different documentary about Nirvana frontman. She says the film portrays her in a false light and her lawyers are trying prevent theaters from showing it . Directed by first time filmmaker Benjamin Statler, Soaked in Bleach uses interviews with investigators and experts as well as re-enactments to explore the events surrounding Cobain's 1994 death from a shotgun blast. The singer was also found to have a massive amount of heroin in his system. Seattle police quickly ruled it a suicide. One of Statler's main sources in the film is Tom Grant, a cop-turned-private detective who was hired by Courtney Love more than 20 years ago to find her missing husband. As soon as Grant started working for Love, he became suspicious and began recording their interactions. Having come to doubt that Cobain committed suicide, he long ago made those tapes available online. When Statler first stumbled upon those recordings on Tom Grant's website, he thought someone should do a movie about the events surrounding Cobain's death. As the years passed, he was shocked that no one ever did. When he finally set out to make his own film, he started to figure out why. Many people told him to stay away from the topic altogether. When he couldn't get a financial backer for the film, he funded it himself. While the film got decent distribution in Europe, theaters in the US have been less eager to pick it up. He ended up doing a day and date release with Vimeo. In addition to forensic and homicide experts, Soaked in Bleach features an interview with Norm Stamper, the chief of police in Seattle at the time of Cobain's death. In the film, Stamper says, "If I were the chief today, I would re-open this investigation." Statler told us that even if he never makes any of his money back on the film, if he can get others to agree with Stamper and reopen the case, it will have all been worth it.
Who will lead California's Democratic Party? It’s been a hectic week in politics. There’s been talk of impeachment, Watergate, and Mike Pence’s political action committee. Also, the California Democratic Party is having its convention in Sacramento this weekend, where they’ll talk strategy and pick a new leader.
Comedian Vir Das offers 'Abroad Understanding' After selling out stadiums in India, comedian and actor Vir Das is looking to break through in the US with his new Netflix special, Vir Das: Abroad Understanding. He tells us about making the jump from Bollywood to Hollywood and how he hopes his pointed humor can redefine expectations in India and America.
'American Gods' showrunners Bryan Fuller and Michael Green The novel American Gods features countless mythological characters gearing up to fight an epic battle. The writer-producers of the new adaptation on Starz were determined to do justice to the book -- even if that meant constantly moving production and pushing the budget. Showrunners Michael Green and Bryan Fuller tell us why they're not worried about critics who say the show is confusing, and go into the thinking behind an especially memorable, explicit sex scene.
Who is winning the fight to control LA’s public schools? Twenty-two people were killed by a suicide bomber last night at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England. Who was the terrorist and what does the attack mean for Manchester’s immigrant community? Also, we talk to newly elected LAUSD school board member Kelly Gonez and Alex Caputo-Pearl, head of the LA teachers union, about the most expensive school board race in the country’s history, the conflict between the union and charter school supporters, and the future of LA’s public schools.