Borderline's Breakout Year

Patrick F. Albertson

When 29-year-old Sean Durkin won the Sundance Directing Prize this year for his debut feature, Martha Marcy May Marlene, a haunting story about a young woman (Elizabeth Olsen) rebuilding her life after escaping a violent cult, he had a lot of people to thank. Chief among them were his partners and collaborators at Borderline Films: Antonio Campos and Josh Mond. The three met at NYU and launched Borderline in 2003. Their first attempt at a feature film made it a breath away from realization before the financing fell through at the last minute. Not to be denied, Campos quickly penned the short film, Buy It Now. Durkin shot it. Mond produced. It cost no money and wound up winning first prize in the student film competition at Cannes in 2005. "Winning that award was massive, it really changed things," says Durkin. Since then they've worked steadily on everything from commercial work to features including Campos' acclaimed Afterschool. Currently, MMMM is slated for release by Fox Searchlight later this year and they are in post-production on Campos' second feature, Simon Killer. When asked how the trio manages so many projects simultaneously, Durkin is demure: "We've been lucky enough to have each other's support to make these films that are tough to make and to get made," he says. "And it just kind of works out."


Above: (L-R) Sean Durkin, Josh Mond, Antonio Campos.

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