Austin filmmaker Robert Rodriguez to make another film for $7,000

Robert Rodriguez sat down with the nerds behind the Nerdist Podcast this week to discuss the upcoming premiere of season two of “From Dusk Till Dawn.”

Texas Film Awards Honoree Robert Rodriguez walks the red carpet held at Austin Studios on March 12, 2015. Photo by Suzanne Cordeiro
Texas Film Awards Honoree Robert Rodriguez walks the red carpet held at Austin Studios on March 12, 2015. Photo by Suzanne Cordeiro

The Austin filmmaker also announced that to mark the 25th anniversary of “El Mariachi,” which he has repeatedly credited as the film that first got him noticed, he will be making another film with the same budget as that film: $7,000.

“El Mariachi,” which Rodriguez made in 1992, won the then little-known filmmaker a two-year deal with Columbia Pictures and an audience prize at Sundance.

“I’ll have no crew; I’ll just use friends — I’ve got some pretty cool friends I can put in front of the camera — but still no crew, no money,” said Rodriguez, who has more than enough “cool friends” (George Clooney, Selma Hayek, Quentin Tarantino just to name a few).

The filmmaker also said the he will have a documentary crew to chronicle the process and show how to make a $7,000 film in 2015.

“When I made ‘Mariachi’ out of my apartment and sold it, I wanted to go tell everybody that it was possible because I would have wanted to know that,” Rodriguez said during the podcast interview.

“I know how many other people thought the same thing: ‘Oh I’m very creative and I have a talent for this sort of thing — but I don’t live in the right city, that I don’t know the right people — so I shouldn’t even dream about that.”

Rodriguez, hailed by Nerdist as being one of the “brightest, shiniest examples of a creator,” is known for making it on his own as a do-everything-yourself filmmaker.

The Austin director expressed gratitude to fellow filmmaker George Lucas (heard of him?) for telling him to “stay in Austin” and pursue film making outside of Hollywood.

Rodriguez also told Nerdist that his Austin-based television network, El Rey, is the “most gratifying thing” in his career so far because of how it shines a light on up-and-coming, out-of-the-Hollywood-box filmmakers.

For more from Rodriguez, look in Sunday’s paper for Austin360’s Dale Roe’s interview with the filmmaker on season two of El Rey’s “From Dusk Till Dawn.”

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