The NY Film Critics Series kicked off their 21st Fall series with “Christine”. The film, is based on true events of the life of Christine Chubbuck.
Christine is a woman on the verge of turning 30 whose life is not going the way she planned. She lives at home with her mother, finds out she has a cyst on her ovary which may prevent her from getting pregnant in the future, and is hoping for romance with George Ryan, her station’s anchor.
She works in the local Sarasota, Florida news station while trying to make a name for herself and finding her way to a larger market. Christine’s boss is looking for juicer stories to increase ratings, which troubles Christine as she feels she is not sharing stories that truly matter, resulting in arguments between the two.
As her professional and personal life began to spiral out of control, she decided to take her own life. Christine committed suicide on air during a broadcast.
Rebecca Hall transformed into Christine, not only through appearance but her voice, and showing her vulnerability. She had an unbelievable performance!
Following the screening was a live discussion and audience Q&A with writer/ producer Craig Shilowich hosted by Stephen Whitty.
Craig Shilowich described how he related to Christine and her life. He went through a difficult depression and dealt with mental illness. One night Craig was watching an E! show called Boulevard of Broken Dreams and the episode that was airing had a segment about Christine. Craig was very interested in her story and contacted a producer to learn more about Christine which led into a list of contacts connected to Christine and her life.
When researching Christine, Craig was only able to view one video of Christine. The news station would not record broadcasts on a regular basis and he built the character based on this one video.
Craig found it difficult to find the right actress to play Christine. It wasn’t until he met Rebecca that he knew she was right for the role. The rest of the pieces began to fall in place.
He also explained how it was important for filming that they had the appropriate television station equipment as the time of Christine’s television career. After a lot of research and a lead, they were able to rent all of the equipment for the film, which was still in working condition. This was a big success for the production.
The audience really enjoyed and respond to the film and Rebecca Hall’s performance!
To learn more about the NY Film Critics Series head here!