John Sayles was born in Schenectady, NY on September 28th, 1950. Who knew he would one day grow up to be such an innovative and influential independent film director? Now he is about 59 and 6′4″. Sayles got his start, like many, from Roger Corman, who had an incredible eye for young talent as he gave Martin Scorsese, James Cameron, etc their starts. Sayles’ first film was called The Return of the Secaucus 7 (1979). This film he made with $30,000 that he’d received from writing scripts.
Based on seven former college friends who get back together for a long weekend in New Hampshire, and reminisce about the good old days and a time they were arrested on the way to a protest in Washington, D.C. This film was shot in one location and the story was set over a long weekend (so as to reduce costume expenditures) and was written about people Sayles’ age (so his friends could be used as actors). This low budget can be surmised from the static master shots that comprise a majority of the film. (more…)