The Outsiders of New Orleans: The Loujon Press
USA, 2007, 56 Minute Running Time
Genre/Subjects: Documentary, Political, Social Issues
Regular festival guest Wayne Ewing (Breakfast With Hunter, SDFF 26; Remembering Hunter, SDFF 28; Free Lisl, SDFF 29) returns to Denver to present his latest documentary, The Outsiders of New Orleans – an intimate, multifaceted portrait of bohemians, bon vivants and bootstrap Beat-era publishers Jon and Gypsy Lou Webb.
Although he started out as a journalist, Jon Webb didn't really begin to make it in letters until he landed in prison following a botched armed robbery. During his three-year stint, he edited the cellblock newspaper and, upon his release, wrote his jailhouse memoirs, Four Steps to the Wall. By the same token, although he met Lou in 1930s Cleveland, it wasn't until 1960 that the couple found their true calling as founders of the Loujon Press in New Orleans. Working out of their small apartment in the French Quarter, they launched an avant-garde literary journal called The Outsider – whose contributors included Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs and the then-unknown Charles Bukowski, first published by the Webbs. Despite the difficulties of establishing, never mind maintaining, a small, reputable literary press, they went on to produce beautifully illustrated, handcrafted books by the likes of Henry Miller.
Drawing upon the Jeff Weddle–penned history Bohemian New Orleans, Ewing incorporates excerpts from the Webbs' correspondence with their authors, as well as interviews with the still-colorful Gypsy Lou, to recount a headier chapter in New Orleans' art-filled history.
In person – Wayne Ewing, Curtis Robinson, Jeff Weddle, Edwin Blair
DIRECTOR: Wayne Ewing