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Complex Talks to 'Banksy Does New York' Director About Creating a Crowd-Sourced Film

Complex recently interviewed director Chris Moukarbel for his documentary film, Banksy Does New

Complex recently interviewed director Chris Moukarbel for his documentary film, Banksy Does New YorkThe film depicts Banksy’s month-long residency in New York City in October 2013, where he unveiled a new piece of artwork somewhere in the five boroughs everyday for that month. Moukarbel talks about the process in creating the film out of crowd-sourced content, including the selection of the people interviewed and sourcing of videos and images, which his team put together to look at the events as a whole. Most importantly, Moukarbel explains how Banksy himself came about being involved with the film halfway through and how that benefited the making of the film. Read the excerpt below and head on over to Complex for the full interview.

What is your approach with documentaries in general? It seems like Banksy Does New York has parallels with your film Me at the Zoo.

I’m really interested in cinema and social media. I think a lot of us are making documentaries every day, in a sense. So to me, it seems like a great way to tell a story—not just of the real world but also of this big digital space that we occupy. It feels like an accurate way to tell a story because so much of our lives are playing out in these two spaces. For me to be able to sift between these two parallel universes as a filmmaker is exciting and also feels like the most accurate way to tell a story.

What have you learned about him through your interactions?

Oh my god, absolutely nothing [laughs]. I don’t know anything more about him than I did when we started this, which may be a testament to his ability to stay anonymous. I really can’t say I have any more insight into the man than I did a year ago.

He reached out to you guys?

We started making the film from the perspective of his work, and it was less important to us whether or not he was involved because it is not really about him. I think there was some concern about it being some kind of exposé, and I think when he realized it was not that kind of movie, he was a little more relaxed in terms of providing us some context for what happened.

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