In April 2015, Adam Dubin spoke about making music videos for the Beastie Boys and Metallica at the Asbury Park Music In Film Festival.
Comedy Specials for Jim Breuer and Anthony Jeselnik in 2015
In 2015, Adam directed the comedy special “Comic Frenzy” for Jim Breuer for EPIX. In 2015, Adam directed the Anthony Jeselnik comedy special “Thoughts And Prayers” for Netflix.
Lewis Black live streaming show from City Winery in Napa Valley
Adam directed three nights of Lewis Black live streaming concerts from City Winery in Napa Valley in July 2014.
The Jim Norton Show on Vice
In 2014 Adam directed three episodes for the upcoming Jim Norton Show on Vice with Jim Norton, Kurt Metzger, Dan Naturman, Gilbert Gottfried, Lynne Koplitz and Bridget Everett.
June 2014-“A Year And A Half In The Life Of Metallica” reviewed in the book Heavy Metal Movies
Hit The Lights-The Making Of Metallica Through The Never
13 chapter web series documentary directed by Adam Dubin
Released on internet in September 2013 with exclusive clips available on iTunes, Regal Cinemas, AMC Cinemas, Howard Stern, Loudwire. Released with additional scenes on the Metallica Through The Never DVD in January 2014.
Metallica in Antactica-December 2013
Adam traveled with Metallica to Antarctica to direct a documentary on their history-making concert there.
Lewis Black’s new concert film “In God We Rust” directed by Adam Dubin will premiered on EPIX on March 17, 2012
Adam Dubin directing documentary of Metallica 3D movie
I Want My MTV: The Uncensored Story of the Music Video Revolution
On Adam Yauch’s passing-May 2012
The first time I ever saw Adam Yauch, he was playing bass on stage with Adam Horovitz in their hardcore band The Young And The Useless. It was at CBGB’s in the fall of 1982 and I had gone there with Rick Rubin to see the headliners, UK Subs. I remember Yauch’s band as loud, dynamic and over the top, everything the Beastie Boys would later be. At one point, Yauch was jumping around playing so furiously that he fell off the stage backwards onto the hard floor. He jumped up quickly, obviously hurt, but kept on playing which got a round of applause. That’s Adam Yauch. Putting the music first. From there he evolved as a musician, a musical innovator, a film director, a humanitarian and a family man. One job title could not contain his many talents. If someone had said to Adam Yauch in 1982 that he would someday be inducted into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame, he would have laughed right in your face. But looking at it from 2012, there is no one more deserving because he changed music for the better.
I was privileged to be his collaborator while co-directing the videos for “Fight For Your Right To Party” and “No Sleep Till Brooklyn.” I’ll always remember that when the playback sounded and the cameras rolled, Yauch gave one hundred and ten percent. That’s why those videos are so successful and still viewed today. So to Yauch, I raise a glass and say, “Born and bred in Brooklyn, USA, they call me Adam Yauch but I’m MCA!”
On Ric Menello’s passing-March 2013
Ric Menello’s legacy will be his filmmaking and not his apartment. It’s an enduring testament to Ric’s multifaceted humanity that he had many collaborators and I was fortunate enough to be one of them. From the time that we co-wrote and then co-directed the Beastie Boys videos and on through numerous writing experiences, Ric’s voluminous knowledge of film, literature and life were a treasure trove of inspiration. Although I went to NYU to study film, my real movie education started as one of the many acolytes who worshipped at the alter of the Weinstein front desk from midnight to 8, five days a week when Ric was working. That’s where films were discussed, dissected, examined and reinvented. Best of all, if you were drunk enough or stalwart enough to stay up until 4:30am you got the unrivaled treat of watching The Abbott & Costello Show with Ric Menello. It gets no better than that. Those who were there know exactly what I’m talking about. Many aspiring filmmakers both famous and not so well known drew from Ric’s cinematic gumbo. That was one of the great things about Ric. He didn’t care if you were famous or not. He talked to everyone as his many friends in Ditmas Park know.
For the many years that I went over Ric’s house to write, I was welcomed like family. Ric’s mother Lucille would make enough food for an army. What you couldn’t finish, she sent home with you. Ric and I would eat, then write, and then watch a movie. Watching a movie with Ric was a sublime experience. He gave you the history of the film. He imitated the voices of all the actors. He explained why the movie mattered. He would agree with you and disagree with you and laugh about it. That’s how Ric and I wrote many films, some of which actually got made. We were friends first and collaborators second.
Ric had some problems but who wants perfection in their film gods anyway? He was a good and gentle soul. I’m glad to see Ric remembered so well by so many people. He deserves to have articles written about him. He deserves a piece in The New Yorker. I’m not sure why James Gray, a more recent collaborator of Ric’s, decided to spend half of the article talking about Ric’s apartment or his personal hygiene when there was so much more to him than that. In the final analysis, who cares? The many people whos lives were enriched by Ric, who were inspired by Ric and who cared about Ric, know what made Ric special. It wasn’t his darkness. It was his light. Ric would probably end this little piece with a brilliant quote from Orson Welles delivered in a flawless imitation. I’d rather just end this with a quote from Ric: “Dubin, get over here, we’ll eat, we’ll write, we’ll laugh like men!”
Thoughts on the passing of Otto Petersen-April 2014
In the late 90’s I saw a comedy act that was one of the funniest things that I had ever seen. It was Otto & George, a ventriloquist and his filthy mouthed dummy. It killed. Absolutely killed. Nothing could follow it, or at least, nobody wanted to. The second best part was when some drunken idiot in the audience would get pissed off and start heckling. This happens, of course, in every comedy club and every comic knows how to deal with it but in this case the response came from George the dummy. He would strike back against the errant audience member who would then try to fight back. Which was even funnier because now the person was arguing with a dummy, which only makes the heckler even dumber than the dummy. The best part was that Otto was acting as if he was trying to calm George down. Then George would turn his wrath on Otto, calling him a worthless piece of garbage or something like that! It was the greatest thing you could want to see. Especially when George would tell Otto “you’re no Jeff Dunham.” The dummy seemed to have a mind of it’s own. I knew I had to work with him.
I had made a short film called Sidesplitters: The Burt & Dick Story starring Lewis Black and Jim Norton. In 2000, the movie was accepted into the Chicago Comedy Festival and programmed as a comedy act at the Old Vic theater. The bill that night was, Lewis Black hosting, then Sidesplitters playing like the opening comedy act, then Lewis brought up Jim Norton who killed, and then Lewis brought up Otto & George. I’ll never forget Lewis’ introduction because he said “I’ve actually spit stuff out of my mouth watching this next act.” Otto & George crushed the crowd. Absolutely slayed them. The kind of laughter where you can’t catch your breath. Afterwards, we all went back to the hotel bar and there was a lot of drinking and camaraderie. I got to really hang with Otto and I was impressed by the depth of his film knowledge. He really got all the inside film jokes in Sidesplitters. And he respected that I had shot 35mm film, just like a real movie. On that night we knew that we had to work together.
On my return to New York I got in touch with my amazing collaborator Ric Menello. Ric and I had been working together since the Beastie Boys videos in the 80’s. I said to Ric that for our next film we have to do “the Dummy movie.” We both knew what that meant. The story would be a turn on the old ventriloquist taken over by the dummy shtick as done in a famous Twilight Zone episode and a great old British film called Dead Of Night. Menello and I wrote the script very quickly and the story was basically Otto playing a hack ventriloquist until he finds a magical or possessed dummy named George and then his fortunes change but, of course, it leads to murder. The kicker was that the story would use Otto & George’s real act.
In January 2001 for three wonderful days we filmed at the Comic Strip. Rachele Benloulou cast a murderers row of comedians to play the various parts around Otto. Lewis Black was the club owner. Nina Hartley, yes that Nina Hartley, was Lew’s wife. Jim Norton played another comedian at the club. Greg Giraldo played Otto’s psychiatrist. Pete Correale and Vanessa Hollingshead played other club comics and Jim Breuer played an over the top Dice-like comic named Tony Metropolis. When I got in touch with Nina Hartley and told her about this comedy that I wanted her to be in, she said “OK but I’m not having sex with anyone.” I said, “No problem, you just have to have sex with the dummy.” She replied, “that’s not a problem.” She was very funny and a real pro. After filming the scene where George the dummy has sex on the bar with Nina, she laughed “Well, I’ve never done that before!” We all felt great to have found some new sexual variation that Nina hadn’t done before. She was great.
The funniest moment, maybe the funniest thing I’ve ever seen, is the moment where the dummy takes over and blows Tony Metropolis off the stage. Tony (Breuer) is onstage doing his schlock act and George pops out from behind the curtain and starts tearing him up telling him “Get off the stage, Hackula! Tell your story walking!” As we were filming, I noticed that every one on the crew was doubled over in laughter with tears coming out of their eyes. It still cracks me up. Jim later said that it took every bit of his self control to keep from laughing and blowing the take. What we got on film was comedy gold.
It was great working with Otto. We finished up American Dummy and it played festivals and people loved it but they especially loved the comedy of Otto & George. I will always be grateful to radio lunatics Opie and Anthony who talked up the film a lot and gave Otto a place to work his magic. I later worked with Stone Temple Pilots and the band and their crew loved the film. They would imitate the dummy’s voice. I remember being backstage once and watching Scott Weiland hand the film to John McEnroe and tell him how funny it was and he had to watch it.
In the end, success is not always measured in dollars. If how funny you are and the respect of your peers are any measure, then Otto was a rock star. He should have been an even bigger star. He was definitely one of the funniest comedians that I have ever seen. I feel fortunate to have worked with him. I feel good that I filmed him in what may turn out to be one of the most enduring records of his act. Otto was always cool with me and for one shining moment, he was the star of a 35mm film where he headlined above Lewis Black, Jim Norton, Greg Giraldo, Pete Correale, Jim Breuer and he got the girl, Nina Hartley. Goodbye, Otto, and thanks for all the laughs.