Denny Dey is a filmmaker, actor, writer, teacher and Midwestern original. I met him first in 2006 on the set of OPENING, a film I produced with Fred Andrews and the Kansas City Filmmakers Jubilee. I saw his talent right away, and had the privilege to direct him in OPENING, and later as one of two lead actors in GO TOGETHER, the last film in the 9 @ Night Film Cycle which he also co-produced. After that we also brainstormed IMBUED together, which was co- produced by Michelle Anton Allen with Stacy Keach in the lead.
Denny has a flare. That’s the best way to put it. He comes up with pure ridge line lightning. You don’t know where it’s coming from, but that’s what sets it apart. He sees the world we think we know, but he surprises us. And I was surprised when he wanted to do WHAT MAD PURSUIT? a rosetta stone documentary about the 9 @ Night Film Cycle. Surprised he wanted to do it, surprised he wanted me to narrate it, and why should I be surprised? I don’t know. To me the 9 feature film 9 @ Night Film Cycle is the single most important and innovative American grass roots cinema since Cassavetes. Ever heard of it? Denny wanted to showcase it. Sweet surprises rounding river bends with a single oarsman bent to the task. A rare appearance.
He did a great job. Analog equipment, one man band, well, two man, including Kevin Mullin who recorded sound. Black and white, rich and crude, wrenched out of that Whitman-esque Tenderloin soil. And a host of almost 500 people credited and sometimes seen in WHAT MAD PURSUIT? the true believers who populate the credit rolls of 9 feature films produced over 14 years with the Tenderloin yGroup, 14 1/2 hours of film done in the improvised Direct Action way.
I think we should all keep Denny in mind. He once ran highly regarded teacher workshops all over Kansas. Now he’s retired to put everything into his filmmaking. If you get a film from Denny you get the man entire, that’s for sure. And in WHAT MAD PURSUIT? you get the straight word about something he and I and hundreds of others did together: the 9 @ Night Film Cycle, circa 1999- 2012. I recommend you get hold of WHAT MAD PURSUIT? and anything else Denny does.
Denny Day, firstname.lastname@example.org