Jeff Nichols is the director of the film, The Bikeriders, a story about a 1960s motorcycle club that turns into a menacing gang known as the Vandals.

The film is adapted from Danny Lyon’s book of the same title. The complex nature of The Bikeriders, leaves us asking, “Why are we attracted to dangerous things?”

In today’s episode, No Film School’s Jason Hellerman speaks with director Jeff Nichols to discuss:

  • Feeling inspired by a photographic documentary book
  • Deliberately changing the film’s structure from the first hour to the second hour
  • The importance of character point of view
  • Why the film style felt appropriate for this story
  • Casting and location scouting - two of the most important parts of the process
  • Using photos from the book for location inspiration
  • Feeling drawn to dangerous characters
  • Why he doesn’t block scenes or rehearse with actors
  • Using a documentary-style editing structure
  • When Jeff realized this story needed to be a movie


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This episode of The No Film School Podcast was produced by GG Hawkins.