Ben Safdie

Filmmaker Benny Safdie did not have to search far and wide for inspiration. While he often looked outward to capture the spirit and energy of his hometown New York in his films, one of his best works was motivated by a desire to recreate his unusual childhood that also likely shaped his future career path. In the feature film "Daddy Longlegs" (2010), which he cowrote and directed with his brother, Josh, Safdie attempted to relive their experiences growing up with a frantic father who chronicled their every move on tape. To reconstruct their family dynamics into a sort of childhood memoir, Safdie thoughtfully incorporated his own confused feelings as a child, as well as the emotional struggles they perceived their father to have gone through. The result was an honest, smart, and stylistic movie that was technically flawless and also introduced the film industry to one of its newest and most original voices.