Five Years Later, Reyes’ Searching For Elliott Smith Can’t Get Distribution

‘For everyone nice enough to stick around despite delays on a release date, I truly appreciate it. It’s difficult getting distribution when the powers that be don’t support us and have wielded their influence to block or try to block screenings in major cities. I’m also not willing to surrender control of the finished product. And not interested in releasing it online until I discover the best way how. So for now, we’ll all have to wait. I sincerely apologize. In the meantime, I’ll continue to leak bonus features from time to time as a way of saying thanks for being here. -Gil Reyes, director.’

This was the message left by Reyes on Facebook this morning, and he was of course talking about his 2009 documentary ‘Searching for Elliott Smith’. I could ask him a few questions but the guy blocked me from posting anything on his page when I dared to criticize his movie, so it is not going to happen….But what are these mysterious powers that don’t support him he is talking about? Despite fans repeatedly asking him to offer the movie online, Reyes resists and persists to think he will get distribution,… after 5 years? I doubt, especially now that there is another documentary about Elliott Smith (‘Heaven Adores You’) which is currently doing the festival grand tour.

But let’s go back to the powers that block screenings in major cities… I don’t know what he is talking about because the movie did have several screenings in Los Angeles, New York, Boston, Portland, so several major cities,…But if some ‘powers’ are really blocking more screenings, he should ask himself if it doesn’t have anything to do with his unconditional support to Jennifer Chiba, who is taking a lot of place in his movie, I would even say she is the central piece of the second half of the movie, crying her innocence in front of the camera – whereas she isn’t even appearing for a second in ‘Heaven Adores You’… Because of this sinful decision, Reyes lost any support from Elliott’s family, didn’t get the rights for the use of his music… But honestly, I seriously doubt the family is behind these powers blocking the screenings, since this has never been the attitude they have adopted since the beginning of the tragedy. Plus what kind of influence could they have? It’s a free country and nobody can block movie screenings! As usual, Reyes is feeding hungry fans with a lot of crap, just like he did in this interview with Denver’s Westword:

‘And then the internet, we’re in this era where you can just go online and post things anonymously without any responsibility and a lot of the stuff isn’t true.’…’ I think a lot of it could be just bored teenagers but I know there are one or two people who aren’t teenagers that are perpetuating most of it that are, like, in their 50s that have nothing else better to do.’

I know whom he was talking about! But he was such a liar when he declared this, because I have never been an anonymous person posting stuff on the internet, I have even attended one of his Q&A with Jennifer Chiba, and I did ask her several questions publicly… He knows me, I am not hiding, he was the one who approached me at WT Schultz’ book reading (yes he was there), as he wanted to convince me ‘to get a coffee with Chiba and talk to her’… What a joke, Reyes, this is obviously something I’d loooove to do, but Chiba has my number and she never called… she was afraid of ‘my tough questions’.

So Reyes should tell the truth for once, and get a reality check. Nobody is blocking screenings in major cities, he just can get distribution. Did it ever cross his mind that he made a crappy movie that nobody wants?

Originally published on Rock NYC (September 27 2014)

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