Blue Jay

Blue Jay is a drama romance film directed by Alex Lehmann in his fictional feature debut, from a screenplay by Mark Duplass. It stars Duplass and Sarah Paulson. The film was financed by Netflix without the company even seeing a script. Instead, Duplass wrote a 10-page outline that allowed for significant improvisation during shooting. Shot in just a few locations in and around the small town of Blue Jay, California, the entire shoot lasted just seven days. The first project from Duplass Brothers Productions’ four-picture deal with Netflix, “Blue Jay” is the kind of movie that eschews nearly all of the qualities of conventional Hollywood movies. Shot in black and white and featuring just two characters, the film stars Duplass and Sarah Paulson as former high school sweethearts who run into each other later in life and take a long, emotional walk down memory lane. With no real action or supporting characters, Duplass and Paulson carry the entire film from start to finish, not unlike Ethan Hawke and Julie Deply in Richard Linklater’s “Before” trilogy. Despite the film’s low budget, the concept was in many ways a gamble. The film had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on 2016.

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