How does the guy responsible for comedies like Ace Ventura: Pet Detective and The Nutty Professor wind up making a documentary about the meaning of life? Well, actually, it took a bike accident. The incident left director Tom Shadyac with a concussion and something called Post Concussion Syndrome, causing the concussion symptoms to linger long after the initial accident. The symptoms were so intense that Shadyac came to the conclusion that this was it, and if his time was about to come to an end, he wanted to leave something truly meaningful and insightful behind; that’s how I Am was born.
In addition to exploring Shadyac’s personal journey, the film looks to tackle two rather expansive questions: what’s wrong with our world and what can we do to make it better? With a film crew of just four, Shadyac set out to explore the issue by interviewing some of the brightest minds out there including South African activist Desmond Tutu, Executive Vice President and Director of Research at the Institute of HeartMath, Rollin McCraty, and even his own father, the former chief executive officer of ALSAC, Richard Shadyac.
Back in 1994, thanks to Shadyac, I walked around saying things like “Loo-hoo-zuh-her” and “All righty then!” Who’d have thought he’d ever get me to reevaluate the decisions I make and the way I approach living my life? Checking out I Am for yourself is a must and so is hearing about the filmmaking process and the ideas behind the movie straight from Shadyac himself. Check out everything he had to say about the experience, where he hopes to go from here and even a little something about a pastime favorite in the video interview below.
Click here to watch the interview.