Fenton Bailey and Randy Barbato’s upcoming HBO documentary Mapplethorpe: Look at the Pictures (which premiered at Sundance) is a comprehensive look at controversial photographer Robert Mapplethorpe that seeks to go beyond the scandal that his work created.
“Any time you make a film it’s a bit like having a love affair with a person,” Bailey tells Real Screen. “You have this intimate relationship where you’re thinking about them day in and day out for a long period of time. I came to really admire Mapplethorpe because he was so honest in a way that I feel even today we’re not prepared for. We know him for the fist-f***ing pictures, but they’re really not the most shocking things he did or said. The most shocking thing about this person was his incredible honesty and that was a great thing to experience.”