THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT (1999)— Witches, am I right?

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On this week’s deep dive, The Cultists present The Blair Witch Project (1999). Marketed upon its release as a true story of real footage showcasing a group of lost filmmakers and their grisly demise, "Blair" quickly became a proto-viral obsession. And what started out as a simple, unassuming experiment in film-making-on-a-budget, quickly turned into one of the most profitable movies in the history of independent cinema. But what is it about this “found footage” film that makes it so unique? Is sending three fresh-faced actors into the Maryland woods armed with nothing but old protein bars, High 8 video cams, and a plucky attitude really all it takes to make a film? And just how well does this film hold up two full decades later? London and Benji head back into the forest to find out. (In prep for this one, London waded through all the film's commentaries, interviews, and old press releases to find out exactly how this film got made—from the creation of the Blair Witch's folklore origins to actually starving and sleep-depriving the film's actors into a "true fear" response—while Benji finally gets to feel like his cache of knowledge of 90s filming equipment matters. (He also watched the sequels)).

Episode Safeword: "steadicam"

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