After appearing as the ghost of Hamlet's father in Michael Almereyda's 2000 film version of the Bard's classic story, which also starred Ethan Hawke, Julia Stiles, and Kyle MacLachlan, Sam Shepard invited the director to make a behind-the-scenes documentary on the rehearsals for Shepard's play THE LATE HENRY MOSS at the Magic Theatre in San Francisco.
The stage work, based on Shepard's own father, who was a Fulbright scholar whose life and career fell apart in a haze of alcohol, featured a remarkable cast, including Nick Nolte, Sean Penn, Woody Harrelson, and Cheech Marin, with music by T-Bone Burnett.
Almereyda followed the action onstage, in the dressing rooms, in bars, and at Shepard's ranch, where the usually private playwright spoke openly about his relationship with his father.
Although Nolte and Penn--and even Shepard himself--are well known for not being forthcoming with their personal lives, they open up in remarkable ways for Almereyda, sharing fascinating stories about their experiences and their work.
THIS SO-CALLED DISASTER is a thrilling look at the creation of art from a myriad of compelling angles.