Director Craig Gillespie discusses Dumb Money

Director Craig Gillespie discusses Dumb Money

October 22, 2023 A DGA Membership Screening Q&A in Los Angeles

A group of amateur stock traders flip the script on Wall Street in Director Craig Gillespie’s biographical comedy-drama, Dumb Money.

Gillespie’s film tells the true story of how regular guy Keith Gill started a movement with other novice traders to get rich by turning GameStop into one of the world’s hottest companies, much to the chagrin of the financial giants who begin to fight back.

On October 22, after the DGA membership screening in Los Angeles, Gillespie discussed the making of Dumb Money during a Q&A moderated by Director Phil Lord (22 Jump Street).

During the conversation, Gillespie spoke about how his third feature collaboration with cinematographer Nicolas Karakatsanis had led to a shorthand for communicating his vision.

“We shot list the whole movie before we start. I think there’s like 260 scenes in this film. And multiple cutting between eight different storylines constantly. So, we needed to know exactly — ‘Are we going from a wide to a tight? We’re in a tight.’ — you know, everything’s kind of figured out that way. But then, once we get into the scene, I’m always looking for ‘how can we elevate it?’” He also shared his preference when it comes to injecting humor. “I always like to use humor to be able to connect with the audience. I feel like the way that we relate in life is with humor. And to have films that are just drama or comedy — it isn’t how we react to each other. I’m always looking for a way to put that dance in there and have the humor come from a very real place.”

Gillespie’s other directorial credits include the feature films The Finest Hours, Million Dollar Arm, Fright Night, Lars and the Real Girl, Mr. Woodcock, Cruella and I, Tonya; the movie for television Trooper; and the pilot episodes of the series My Generation and United States of Tara. He has been nominated five times for the DGA Award for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Commercials and took home the award for his 2006 commercials “Surprise Dinner” and “Mini-Mart” (Ameriquest) and “People of Pain” and “Fable of the Fruit Bat” (Altoids).

Gillespie has been a DGA member since 1996.


Q&A photos by Elisa Haber – Print courtesy of Sony Pictures

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