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Tribeca Film Festival: Juror Lake Bell on the Jury and On-Set Injuries

Lake Bell describes her ‘profound’ back injury on the set of The Coup and her experience so far of being a Tribeca juror.

In a World Lake Bell

Lake Bell is going to be a juror at the Tribeca Film Festival, running from April 16-27. As a juror for the World Narrative Competition, Bell is joined by jurors Steve Conrad, Bart Freundlich, Catherine Hardwicke and Ben Younger, and awards will be announced April 24. I got to interview Bell for Million Dollar Arm this weekend, but by the time that movie opens in May the film festival will be over. So here is what she had to say about being a juror for this week’s film festival.

“This is the first time I am a juror so I’m very excited to be a part of the Tribeca team this year,” Bell said. “It’s a lot of work and I take it really seriously. Obviously I had a tremendous experience and I’m very thankful to Sundance. I know how it can change for a first time filmmaker or any filmmaker. It can change your life so I’m really excited to see all these new films. I am a film fanatic and film buff. I’m a film fan, I’m so excited to be an audience member and enjoy it.”

The film Bell wrote and directed, In a World…, won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award for Bell at Sundance in 2013. At the fest for her own films, she is busy promoting her own work. “At Sundance, every time I’ve been there I’ve had virtually no time to see movies so this is a real luxury.”

When I met Bold Films development exec Garrick Dion at Screamfest he told me about the project The Coup, starring Bell and Owen Wilson. Now Bell has shot the film so I also got an update from her.

“It was the first time that I was in a harness jumping off a building. It was physically quite grueling. I was far away from home and there was a lot of physical challenges. I actually injured my lower back pretty profoundly.”

Bell and Wilson play parents traveling to Asia when a coup erupts and they have to flee for their and their children’s lives. The injury happened while shooting some of the fleeing scenes.

It’s okay because it’s better now, thank God. It’s actually funny because we have two children in it so I’m carrying one of our children who’s like 60 lbs. and jumping over pipes and then under an underpass and all this stuff. I just threw my back out.”

Any parent of toddlers can probably relate to the heavy lifting, but Bell assured me there was nothing normal about her stunts in The Coup.

“If you saw the run you would know that it’s not that normal. There’s a helicopter that’s exploded. It’s a little bit grueling.”

We’ll bring you the full interview with Lake Bell when Million Dollar Arm opens May 16.


Fred Topel is a staff writer at CraveOnline and the man behind Best Episode Ever and The Shelf Space Awards. Follow him on Twitter at @FredTopel.