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Guest Programmer: John Sayles
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John Sayles Profile

One of America's most respected independent filmmakers, John Sayles creates socially relevant movies with distinctive characters and evocative settings. In addition to writing and directing, he frequently works as film editor, actor and "script doctor."

A native of Schenectady, NY, Sayles counts among his outstanding credits Return of the Secaucus 7 (1980); Baby, It's You (1982); Lone Star (1996); and, most recently, 2007's Honeydripper. As this month's Guest Programmer, Sayles honors another "indie" pioneer, Samuel Fuller, by choosing that writer-director's Park Row (1952). He explains to host Robert Osborne that the film brings the "excitement and energy of a pulp movie into a study of pulp journalism."

Sayles picks John Huston's The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948) as his "favorite American film," a movie that is "hitting on all cylinders" with its great direction, acting and unusual (for its time period) location shooting in Mexico.

Sayles final two choices are Italian films: Vittorio De Sica's Two Women (1960), with a central performance by Sophia Loren that is "so magnetic and powerful that it can drive a whole movie"; and Roberto Rossellini's Paisan (1946), "an incredible social document" showing Italy as "a country trying to heal itself" when the experience of World War II "was still very, very raw."

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