By Alex Tresniowski - March 4th, 1996
Such are the out-of-whack economics of Hollywood that, for the cost of one Waterworld, a plucky independent
filmmaker like Kevin Smith could have made more than 6,000 Clerks, his 1994 debut. Low-budget dreamers
and schemers like Smith are brought to life in this quirky book by Pierson, a film nerd who sank $10,000
into Spike Lee's first feature, She's Gotta Have It, kick-starting his own career as a producer's rep.
His indie flicks include Michael Moore's Roger & Me, Richard Linklater's Slackers and the lesbian themed
Go Fish-hence the book's silly title. Pierson's years spent watching movies helped sharpen his skill at
turning the dry subject of film financing into a fresh, funny, even suspenseful story.
Chapters on last-minute distribution deals and film-festival intrigue zing along, buoyed by Pierson's
fondness for "credit-card, family-money, filmstock-inthe-refrigerator" directors like the gutsy Lee.
But Pierson knows that the passion and innocence of his beloved art-house auteurs cannot last. He warns
that many directors dubbed the Next Big Thing can expect a life of compromise once they're caught in the
clutches of Hollywood. (Hyperion, $22.95)