Private Project

Out Of Malibu

On Nov 9 2018 I lost everything I owned when my home in Malibu Park burned to the ground. This is the story of my life in Malibu from when I moved there in June of 2016 through Nov 9the when everything was taken away from me in the fire.

Music by Miley Cyrus, Joe Walsh, Lee Ritenour, Al Hirt, The Last Ride, Billy Goodrum and Madilyn Bailey.

  • Benjamin Pollack
    Flame On, Not All Who Wander Are Lost, Trust Me, Dark Room Theater
  • Benjamin Pollack
    Flame On, Not All Who Wander Are Lost, Trust Me
  • Benjamin Pollack
    Silk, Not All Who Wander Are Lost, Flame On, Dark Room Theater, Gypsies, Tramps & Thieves, The Garage, Moonpie
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    29 minutes 30 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    February 5, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    10,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Benjamin Pollack

Benjamin is a graduate of The American Film Institute and an award winning director/writer. Originally from Philadelphia, Benjamin's first foray into show business was writing an animated James Bond spinoff entitled, James Bond Jr. From there Benjamin went on to write three multi-award winning screenplays, had a short stint with The Groundlings, and went on to complete the masters program at The American Film Institute.

Shortly after graduation, Benjamin was hired by late mega producer, John Daley to edit and produce his last two films, Played and Moonpie. From there Benjamin became an award winning music video director, working with clients like Garry Beers and Ciaran Gribbin (INXS) Mike Krompass (Smash Mouth) Daniel Ash (Bauhaus / Love and Rockets) Matt Zarley and many others.

As a documentary film director, Benjamin's 2019 indie documentary, Out Of Malibu, an escape from Malibu during the Woolsey Fire, with music from Miley Cyrus, Joe Walsh, Lee Ritenour, Al Hirt, The Last Ride, Billy Goodrum and Madilyn Bailey, won at the Los Angeles Film Awards, The Malibu International Film Festival, Impact Doc Awards, Accolade Global Film Competition, the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival and the Independent Shorts Awards.

As a feature film director, Pollack won Best Director at the Los Angeles Independent Television Festival (ITV Fest) for his directorial debut of the independent comedy/horror feature Dark Room Theater. The film also won Best Comedy Feature at the First Glance Film Festival in Philadelphia, and was nominated for Best Narrative Feature and Best Horror feature at the Rome International Film Festival and Shockerfest, respectively.

A member of the WGA, Pollack's feature screenplay's have won numerous awards. His sci-fi comedy feature, Fleaosaurus, won or was nominated 7 times in festivals in 2021. His comedy buddy feature, Assassin Gram, won or was nominated 8 times in 2021. His horror/thriller Dead After Tomorrow took the Best Horror Feature Screenplay Award at Shriekfest, the Los Angeles Horror/Sci-Fi Film and Screenplay Festival, and Best Screenplay at the prestigious Eerie Horror Film Festival.

Benjamin's short screenplays have also won numerous awards. In 2020-2021 Benjamin's short screenplay, What Ever Happened to Jonny Faith, won or was nominated 19 times in festivals like Cinequest, Los Angeles Film Awards, and Worldfest-Houston. His short screenplay, Welcome to Chinatown, won or was nominated 13 times.

In addition to writing and directing, Pollack is an accomplished film producer. He has produced three feature films, over 60 music videos, in addition to films at AFI with actress Amanda Seyfried (Letters to Juliet, Mamma Mia, Alpha Dog) and at Film & Music Entertainment with veteran producer, John Daly (The Terminator, Platoon, The Last Emperor). Pollack also produced the documentary Out of Malibu, the multi-award-winning feature, The Garage, and was the sole producer of his original feature film, Dark Room Theater.

As a film editor, Pollack has been nominated for two ACE Eddie Awards. Her edited the feature film, Wizzardream, the final film of famed director John Carl Buechler, starring Malcolm McDowell and Ernie Hudson. Benjamin also edited the feature film Played, starring Val Kilmer and Gabriel Byrne, and the independent feature film, The Garage, which screened in over 80 festivals and received over 50 awards and nominations.

While at AFI, Pollack held a seat on the Fellows Advisory Council for two years, and served on AFI's Curriculum Review Committee. He was awarded two prestigious production grants for each of his thesis films, the FotoKem Award and the Fuji Filmmakers Award, and was nominated by AFI's Faculty for class valedictorian

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Director Statement

They say the fire was unlucky. I say because of the fire I realized just how lucky I am. Lucky to have my life and my wife and son. It was when everything was taken away from me that I realized it all meant nothing. What really matters is what we do today, and what matters most of all is family.

I'm also lucky because good filmmaking is being able to be honest with your narrative. I was lucky to have the footage I saved from the fire to tell this story with, and I am lucky because my wife loves and supports my efforts to tell this story as honestly as I can.