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Oklahoma filmmaker pays homage to 'Clerks'

James Nghiem's short film “Clerks Too” will premiere Saturday night at City Arts Center.
by Brandy McDonnell Modified: December 20, 2012 at 5:50 pm •  Published: December 21, 2012

As he encountered various obstacles to making the movie, Nghiem's “Clerks Too” took on different forms. He originally wanted it to be surreal shot-for-shot remake in which the actors delivered the same lines but with different emotions. He then devised a sort of David Lynch version of “Clerks” in which two or three sets of actors would play the same parts in kind of parallel universes.

Eventually, he was able to incorporate elements of both ideas into the final film, a story of an aspiring filmmaker (Josh Lathe) who sets out to remake “Clerks” in a wrongheaded effort to win back his selfish ex-girlfriend (Crystal Ecker). Nghiem cast himself in the role of the supportive friend who constantly questions the wisdom of the project.

Along with filming the movie in Oklahoma, Nghiem recruited local musicians such as Depth and Current, I and I, Grandpa Seth and his brother, David Nghiem, with whom he plays in the band The Nghiems, to cover songs from “Clerks.” The director didn't have time to get into the studio to cut a song for his own short film because he was too busy trying to finish it.

Although it took more than a year — rather than a week — to make “Clerks Too,” Nghiem is glad he finished the project. He is now writing an original screenplay and has learned from experience what will be involved with his next film project.

“It's been a weird year, man,” he said. “This has especially been kind of a fun, stressful but weird year for me.”

by Brandy McDonnell
Entertainment Reporter
Brandy McDonnell, also known by her initials BAM, writes stories and reviews on movies, music, the arts and other aspects of entertainment. She is NewsOK’s top blogger: Her 4-year-old entertainment news blog, BAM’s Blog, has notched more than 1...
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