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The Life & Times of Michael Snow 75 / really like it. I've always been surprised that more people haven't picked up on the idea: a superimposition of the larger image over the smaller which gives a depth thing, but I guess that destroys your idea of the flat surface. Well, it leads you to the flat with a kind of a mirage. Sometimes I've seen it and I think I should have just continued the zoom. I like the supering too though. It happens other times in the film, where the zoom catches up and then the two images are together. But it worried me that I might be destroying the fact that you were still in the same space. But I guess it doesn't. Is there much or any editing in Wavelength or is it all done in the camera? It took a little while, but I guess there's not much of what's usually called editing. I shifted things a little bit. In Back and Forth () I edited. Or maybe that's not the right word. I worked on it after the shooting for four or five months. And it doesn't look like an edited film. Sometimes the people cut on or off or the pan doesn't go all the way. And I'd includesome things in some versions that I'd shorten on others. Do you have a soundtrack in mind before you shoot your films? Well, with Wavelength it was planned before I shot the film, because I decided that I wanted to have an ear equivalent to what a zoom was. Which I guess would have been a crescendo. But a glissando seemed more discernable. And I didn't know how to do that, and I could have used any way to get a glissando, but I asked around and talked to a couple of people - MaxNeuhaus, who's a composer - andI'd ask casually, "How would you make a 40-minute glissando?" And he told me to call up Ted Wolfe, who's an engineer. I thought maybe I could do it with a piano, by sounding all the notes and running them all together. I just wanted to start at the bottom and go to the top. So the soundtracks of thefilms don't require special electronic instruments? Wavelength did, because we used a sine-wave generator. Ted Wolfe made a little motor that turned the thing up from 60 cycles to, I don't know what it was, 12,000 cycles or something like that, over a period of 40 minutes. I hadn't thought of using something electronic. Any way of doing it would have been OK, but it turned out that it was electronic. Was it you who arranged to have the music from Eye and Ear Control released as a record? Yeah, through ESP records. I wanted to use the Walking Woman insigniafor some company that manufactured things so I'd be able to see it on trucks and billboards and things like that. For a while I thought we might get to use the Walking Woman for the record company. Before Bernard Stollman went ahead with ESP he was considering making it WalkingWoman Works Records. How would you describe Standard Time? I don't know. Thinking about Wavelength made me think about using other kinds of basic film vocabulary things.And that was like a sketch that showed a lot of possibilities . It's my home movie, really. Do you mind people calling yourfilms structural or conceptual films? They're conceptual in that they're planned. Some people - take Jonas, he shoots a whole lot of stuff, then he edits it. It's not conceptual, it's a whole other thing. I plan them as carefully as I can, although it doesn't always come out that way. Do you allow chance to play any part in your films? Quite a lot. I make a kind of container that makes fortuitousthings belong. 76 The Collected Writingsof Michael Snow Did you have any reasonfor picking the particular dramatic events that take place Yeah, but it was a different kind of reason than with Wavelength. It was connected in some ways, in that I wanted to inhabit the place in variousways. What is the place, by the way? It's a classroom at Fairleigh Dickinson University, which is in New Jersey. I was there for, I don't know what it was, an artists' seminar...


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