Stoughton expats Nick Prueher and Joe Pickett struck gold with their goofy Found Footage Festival way back in the pre-YouTube era. But that doesn't mean they've lost their meal ticket to the Web. "There's a lot of found footage on the Internet," says Prueher, who along with Pickett will host another fest of video oddities and garage sale gems at the Orpheum Stage Door on Friday, Aug. 10. "But this is things that either we've found or have been sent to us. And there's nothing like having tour guides take you through their collection of found videos and being able to laugh at them in a room full of 250 people."
Prueher assures the duo's fans that some real gems are included in their current touring program. He's particularly jazzed about some clips of amateur performers doing their thing on Stairway to Stardom, which ran for 15 years on a Manhattan cable access station. "The show featured the most charming performers, who have a lot of heart but not a lot of talent," he laughs. A child's review of Disneyland taken from Madison's public access channel is another favorite, and Prueher says he and Pickett are really happy about a montage of old exercise videos that features O.J. Simpson, Pat Boone and something called "The Caveman Workout." The latter, Prueher adds, "essentially involves hitting yourself really, really hard."
Although the Found Footage Festival has taken its two curators both across the country and overseas, Prueher says they also have other irons in the fire. The current New York residents have formed their own film company, and their first documentary, Dirty Country (which tells the story of factory worker/potty-mouth country music auteur Larry Pierce) won the audience award at the South by Southwest Film Festival.
They would love to show it here, but it was rejected by the Wisconsin Film Festival. "The subject matter is unconventional," Prueher deadpans, explaining the omission. "And there's a lot of swearing in it."
Prueher and Pickett encourage audiences to bring their favorite found video clips to the Stage Door for possible inclusion in the next edition of the Found Footage Festival.