By Bob Zwerg
Caveh Zahedi, underground filmmaker, wants famous people to take acid with him on screen. So far only one has taken up the offer: the enigmatic king of new folk music Will Oldham, aka Bonnie "Prince" Billy, and he's not that famous. The result was the film Tripping With Caveh.
How did you get the idea for this?
I have always found that hallucinogens reveal things about a person's consciousness that are invisible to the naked eye, often even to the person themselves, and I wanted to do a TV series about a day in the life of various artist/celebrities whose work I admired.
Was Will Oldham enthusiastic about the idea?
He was a keen participant, but I did have to twist his arm to get him to take the requisite amount.
In the film Oldham compares himself to a tree. Was that the 'shrooms talking?
Will Oldham is a very complex person. I do not presume to know what he is like all the time, but I think I can safely say it wasn't the 'shrooms talking.
Any interesting hallucinations?
When I take mushrooms, I see Aztec and/or Mayan imagery. At first, my theory, which I borrowed from Terence McKenna [hallucinogen boffin], was that the mushrooms were sentient beings who had somehow incorporated the images from the consciousness of the Aztecs and Mayans who had ingested the mushrooms previously. But another (perhaps more plausible) theory that someone suggested to me recently, was that what we call Aztec and Mayan imagery was Aztecs and Mayans reproducing the visions that they saw when taking the mushrooms.
Who else would you invite to participate?
Harmony Korine, Lars Von Trier, Jean-Luc Godard, David Bowie, David Byrne, Morrissey.
Yes! I think Bush is a guy who is in a lot of unconscious pain, and who's acting out that pain in an incredibly destructive way. It would be extremely interesting (and healing) to watch him on a large dose of hallucinogens.
What about Lindsey Lohan?
I don't know who she is.