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The Next Reel • Season 13 • Series: 2023 DGA Awards Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Theatrical Feature Film Nominees • The Fabelmans

The Fabelmans

“Everything happens for a reason.”

Spielberg’s Passion Project Comes to Life

Few filmmakers have had as much impact on cinema as Steven Spielberg, but it wasn’t until recently that he felt ready to tackle his most personal project yet. With the passing of his parents, Spielberg finally felt he could tell the story of his youth and early days as a filmmaker without hurting their feelings. Join us – Pete Wright and Andy Nelson – as we continue the 2023 DGA Awards Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Theatrical Feature Film Nominees series with a conversation about The Fabelmans.

A Fabelman’s Home Movie Reveals Spielberg’s Roots

In The Fabelmans, we see young Sammy Fabelman discovering his passion for filmmaking, learning to use the camera to confront his fears and insecurities. As he grows older, his camera becomes both a tool for artistic expression and a shield from life’s challenges, including his parents’ crumbling marriage. We discuss how Spielberg masterfully weaves together the threads of Sammy’s personal journey with his development as a filmmaker, showcasing the power of the medium to shape perceptions and evoke emotions.

Throughout our conversation, we marvel at the film’s authenticity and vulnerability, as Spielberg bares his soul on screen. We also touch on:

  • The exceptional performances by Gabriel LaBelle, Michelle Williams, and Paul Dano
  • Spielberg’s signature themes of broken families, fear, and the unknown
  • The evolution of Sammy’s filmmaking techniques and understanding of the craft
  • The film’s poignant exploration of the artist’s struggle and the sacrifices they make

A Love Letter to Cinema

The Fabelmans is more than just a coming-of-age story; it’s a love letter to the power of cinema and the passion of those who create it. Through Sammy’s journey, Spielberg reminds us of the magic that can happen when we surrender ourselves to the movies, and the courage it takes to bring our own stories to life on screen. We have a great time talking about it, so check it out then tune in. The Next Reel – when the movie ends, our conversation begins!

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When the movie ends, our conversation begins. We love movies. We’ve been talking about them, one movie a week, since 2011. It’s a lot of movies, that’s true, but we’re passionate about origins and performance, directors and actors, themes and genres, and so much more. So join the community and let’s hear about your favorite movies, too.