In this episode, Jessica Schwartz and co-host Dr. Runchao Liu (S2 E9) speak with Steven Kochones, the director of KCET's Artbound: Chinatown Punk Wars about his critical choices in portraying a crucial, yet relatively short, period of time in LA's punk history (and punk history more broadly). He also offers insight into sound design, musical placement, and editorial decisions that make the film a challenge to other histories of LA punk and demand that we contend with the taken-for-granted framings of the people and places that comprise its foundations.
DIRECTOR & PRODUCER BIO
Steven Kochones is an award-winning filmmaker based in Los Angeles. He has directed and produced 20 documentaries including Country: Portraits of an American Sound, released on Netflix and other premium outlets, and Who Shot Rock & Roll, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. Four of his films have been broadcast on the Emmy® winning KCET series Artbound, including Water: Our Thirsty World, made in cooperation with National Geographic. Kochones’ series of special venue films, commissioned by the Annenberg Space for Photography, include The War Photographers, which recounts the stories of Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalists, and Frans Lanting: The Evolution of LIFE, which visualizes the evolution of life on Earth through the lens of the nature photographer. Kochones directed America’s Library, which explores historic milestones in the vaults of the Library of Congress and features never-before-seen treasures unearthed from its vast holdings. The filmmaker recently completed Chinatown Punk Wars, a documentary that tells the unlikely tale of two Chinese restaurants that became the epicenter of punk rock in late 1970s Los Angeles.
Kochones’ films comprise a broad range of subjects including music, arts and culture, climate change, and history. His films have been screened at over 75 film festivals, winning 14 awards. In 2018, he was selected as a filmmaker envoy for the American Film Showcase, an initiative of the U.S. Department of State. He is a member of the Producers Guild of America and founder of Arclight Productions, a creative studio producing non-fiction work and branded content.
Steven's Websites and Social Media
X (Twitter): https://twitter.com/stevenkochones
Arclight Productions Website: arclightprods.com
Chinatown Punk Wars: https://www.pbs.org/video/chinatown-punk-wars-xhb3rm/
Chinatown Punk Wars: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKa3g_I78wY
This episode was produced and hosted by Jessica Schwartz and was co-hosted by Runchao Liu. The audio and transcript were edited by Bella Gerard.