AT ANY PRICE
About the Production
The fiercely competitive world of high-tech agribusiness is the backdrop for AT ANY
PRICE, a drama that melds timeless themes of fathers and sons, ambition and rebellion,
morality and survival, with a sharply de-romanticized view of modern farming. "I spent
about six months in the Midwest observing the life of farmers," says writer/director
RAMIN BAHRANI about his heartland portrait. "I'd ride with the farmers in their
massive 48-row air-conditioned GPS planters and they'd talk to me, almost like a therapy
session. A lot of the stories and emotions in the movie came from those conversations
with real farmers."
As was his creative process with his much-acclaimed earlier features GOODBYE SOLO
(2008), CHOP SHOP (2007), and MAN PUSH CART (2005), Bahrani drew from
lengthy research, living close to his material and gathering stories, insights and details.
"When I heard that seed-sellers have Customer Appreciation Day, I knew it could be a
great framework for the story. Another time a farmer I was staying with, George Naylor
(George Naylor was among the farmers profiled in The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael
Pollan, who introduced Bahrani to a number of farmers and contacts in corn country.),
took me to a Power Point presentation about improving crop yields in the back room of a
family restaurant. It made it into the movie."
At the same time, AT ANY PRICE marks a departure for Bahrani as it is his first film
with a larger budget and cast of professional actors. "After having made three films with
a limited cast and very specific but contained worlds, I was interested to challenge
myself. The stories I heard in the Heartland seemed like the perfect opportunity to
enlarge my cast, to work with professional actors, and to broaden the social scope of the
story to include religion, business and politics. I wanted to tell a story about serious
subjects with complex characters that would also be interesting to audiences beyond fim
festivals and New York City.
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