Holesum Short Film

Right now you can see the crowd-pleasing Isn’t It Romantic? in theaters to give your Valentine’s Day a little spark. The charming, hilarious new movie starring Rebel Wilson, Adam DeVine, Liam Hemsworth and Priyanka Chopra is a love letter to romantic comedies and a great way to spend this greeting card holiday, whether or not you have a date.

But before you go see the delightful romcom, maybe you’d like to check out something a little different from the film’s director, Todd Strauss-Schulson. During the editing process for Isn’t It Romantic?, the filmmaker shot a short film called Holesum. It features The Final Girls star Angela Trimbur and Hamilton‘s Jon Rua, and they both choreographed their own dances too. Watch below!

Todd Strauss-Schulson’s Holesum Short Film

Todd Strauss-Schulson told us about getting this short together:

“During the editing process on Isn’t It Romantic, I decided to make something small and personal and free, with no rules except to satisfy my own creative impulses. Making this was a birthday present to myself, to experiment and stretch creatively. The shoot itself was scrappy, encouraged, and cobbled together with generous friends and talented artists. It’s pure and personal and weird and handmade. Also there are abstract puppets dancing around.”

The filmmaker has a penchant for bringing musical and dance sequences into his projects. A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas had a huge holiday number with Neil Patrick Harris, Angela Trimbur puts on a tour de force, Adderall-fueld striptease in The Final Girls, and Isn’t It Romantic? has two (almost three) huge musical numbers in it. Strauss-Schulson explained his fascination with these kind of sequences and how he uses the camera to capture them:

“One of my favorite quotes about filmmaking is by the great Chinese filmmaker King Hu who said “”The audience is the camera. I don’t want the audience to sit and watch, I want it to move.”

Sometimes I like to imagine the lens of my camera is the tip of a conductors baton. Is that pretentious? Am I pretentious?

Anyway, beyond the visuals there is something deeply human about watching people dance and express themselves in an embodied way, not only an intellectual/verbal way. Busby Berkeley built the genre on the tension between artifice and authenticity. Heightened visuals and some deeply human experience.

I always feel like when you watch a person dance to music you hear the music differently. And I love that—there is a kind of alchemy that produces something new.”

If you’d like to compare this to one of the musical numbers in Isn’t It Romantic?, here you go:

On a personal note from the filmmaker, Angela Trimbur was diagnosed with breast cancer a week after Holesum was completed. There’s a GoFundMe page that is still active to help pay for her medical bills (not all actors are rich), so if you’d like to donate, every little bit will help.

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