blog

Michel Gondry's "My New New York Diary"

A page from Doucet’s 1999 ‘My New York Diary’

In 1999, graphic artist extraordinaire (with quite possibly the coolest website intro page ever), Julie Doucet, published My New York Diary, the illustrated story of her spontaneous move from Canada to New York City. Like all of her work, it’s candid, funny and completely engrossing, and it earned her a devoted fan base that includes director Michel Gondry. But just being a fan wasn’t enough for Gondry, who recently collaborated with Doucet on My New New York Story: A Film Book. What was originally supposed to be a short film directed by Gondry and starring Doucet and her drawings – which would be animated later by Gondry to make the setting – turned into a book/DVD companion piece about the process of making the film itself.

From the 2010 Gondry/Doucet collaboration.

This newly envisioned concept begins with Gondry and Doucet discussing the project over the phone to their meeting in New York, where he filmed her in front of a blue screen. But Doucet was more intrigued by the other things going, like Gondry’s fights with his housemate and her own misgivings about the project. She even bought a digital recorder so she wouldn’t miss a thing.

When she returned to Montreal, Doucet created the drawings that Gondry then animated à la THE SCIENCE OF SLEEP. This new short film is meant to be experienced along with the book by Doucet. Try reading the book first and then watching the DVD to flesh out the experience, or get your own copy signed tonight by Gondry at Family Bookstore in LA.