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RIP George Kuchar 1942-2011

The Kuchar brothers will never be fully appreciated as auteurs, but that's OK because anyone who knows anything about cinema sees their influence everywhere.

by Rocco Castoro
Sep 7 2011, 12:00am

Photo by Jeff Enlow

I've not met many people more interesting, sincere, funny, or genuinely peculiar as filmmaker George Kuchar. Last year I visited him and his twin brother Mike in San Francisco to facilitate and document the production of Room 666. It was their first collaborative "picture"—as they call them—in decades (and, it saddens me to say, their last). George Kuchar died last night at the age of 69.

After spending just a few minutes at their apartment, I had the inclination to move in with them—the fruity, genius uncles I never had. His death came as a surprise because just over a year ago you would've never known that George had been suffering from cancer. He acted young in every sense, except for the wrinkles. I can only imagine how Mike, who undoubtedly has lost a giant chunk of his soul, feels today. If you've never heard of the Kuchars I implore you to read the interview with them that we published in our Film Issue.

The Kuchar brothers will never be fully appreciated as auteurs, but that's OK because anyone who knows anything about cinema sees their influence in the work of Warhol, Kenneth Anger, John Waters, and so many other filmmakers who dared to do things their own way. Above all else, the Kuchars are weirdness incarnate—outliers even among the outsiders and too eccentric for the freaks. More importantly, I'd rather watch one of their movies than 99.9 percent of the garbage being pumped into theaters like raw sewage on a weekly basis. Thanks, George, and stay weird, wherever you are.