3-Minute Interview: David L. Brown

The Brisbane-based director is making a series of documentaries about the Bay Bridge sponsored by Professional Engineers in California Government. The newest, “Amazing: The Rebuilding of the MacArthur Maze,” follows the fiery collapse in 2007 and how it was reconstructed in just 26 days. It airs on KQED Channel 9 at 7:30 p.m. Monday, at 2:30 a.m. Friday and at 6 a.m. April 13.

How did you come to make the film? This is my second for PECG; the first was “The Bridge So Far — A Suspense Story,” which won two Emmy Awards. They had seen my work, contacted me through my Web site and asked to me do that one.

What was difficult about making the movie? It was mostly to craft the story in an entertaining way, to make the topic of construction as entertaining as possible for a general audience. We weren’t sure where the humor was going to come in; the 3-D animation by Rick Pepper and cartoon animation by Charlie Canfield — a pattern we set in the first movie — were a great boon.

Did the fact that contractor C.C. Myers was working toward a $5 million bonus affect the speed with which the project was completed? Yes. It’s the polar opposite of what is portrayed in “The Bridge So Far,” about how rebuilding the Bay Bridge’s east span has been unbelievably delayed and over budget.

Did the project really go as smoothly as pictured in the movie? There were a few small hurdles, like trying to find steel and two blowouts when putting on the final girders.

Did you plan the movie’s fun character development? It turned out that Carl Douglas, president of Stinger Welding [which provided the steel], was a great counterpart to C.C. Myers.

lkatz@examiner.com

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Anti-eviction demonstrators rally outside San Francisco Superior Court. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Report: Unpaid rent due to COVID-19 could be up to $32.7M per month

A new city report that attempts to quantify how much rent has… Continue reading

Music venues around The City have largely been unable to reopen due to ongoing pandemic health orders. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SF to cut $2.5M in fees to help 300 nightlife venues

San Francisco will cut $2.5 million in fees for hundreds of entertainment… Continue reading

Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett departs the U.S. Capitol on October 21, 2020 in Washington, DC. President Donald Trump nominated Barrett to replace Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg after Ginsburg’s death. (Photo by Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images)
GOP senators confirm Amy Coney Barrett to Supreme Court in partisan vote

By Jennifer Haberkorn Los Angeles Times The Senate on Monday confirmed Judge… Continue reading

Curator Tim Burgard looks over a section of the galleries comprising “The de Young Open,” a huge, varied collection of work by Bay Area artists. (Photo courtesy Gary Sexton/Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco)
Bay Area artists jam-pack vivid ‘de Young Open’

Huge exhibition — with works for sale — showcases diversity, supports community

SF Board of Education vice president Gabriela Lopez and commissioner Alison Collins listen at a news conference condemning recent racist and social media attacks targeted at them and the two student representatives on Monday, Oct. 26, 2020. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
Online attacks on school board members denounced by city officials

City officials on Monday condemned the targeting of school board members, both… Continue reading

Most Read