It’s the same story we’ve heard a hundred times - a hungry, imaginative young child is given a Super 8 camera as a gift, and the rest in potential cinematic history. Similarly, there’s the synchronicity of making a student project and having it appreciated by a struggling media outlet. Thanks to said exposure, you wind up getting noticed by up and coming talent trying to make a name for themselves as well. They choose you to helm their initial attempts at TV, and again, the rest is a kind of revisionist history. It’s not long before you’ve found your niche in a particular format - say, the sitcom - and a kind of creative cult revolves around your efforts. That final bit of appreciation, meshed with your own ongoing desire to expand your sphere of experience, leads you right back to your beloved celluloid. Soon, you’re on the cusp of becoming the filmmaking superstar those early home movie dreams inspired.
For Edgar Wright, the stereotypical steps to directorial respect are all there. The 36 year old has already made a massive name for himself among the web-ccentric members of ‘Net Nation, catering to their geek obsessive look at the world with his in-joke laden ideas. But Wright is not some nu-model member of the media. He’s cut from the same cloth as the members of Monty Python some 50 years before, a British boy capable of great wit and even greater insight. He’s also immersed in the new-old school of UK comedy, one symbolized best by the Young Ones/Bottom dynamic of dangerous slapstick violence and the Alan Partridge realm of self-deprecating irony. With his latest effort, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, hitting theaters this week, one can look back at his brief career to see how he got started, and how all the various facets of his rise helped make him manna for the Playstation - and now mainstream - masses.