One of the fathers of New Queer Cinema, uncontested master of sensitive portrayals of youth angst and alienation, musician, photographer, and novelist, Gus Van Sant is undoubtedly one of the most exciting and unpredictable American fi lmmakers working today. His black-and-white debut Mala Noche (1985) was part of the initial wave of small, low-budget features that challenged the vacant spectacles of 1980s Hollywood and launched the fi rst golden decade of American Independent Cinema by abandoning the rules of classical narration and introducing provocative themes that addressed new audiences of ethnic and sexual minorities. Van Sant’s subsequent features — Drugstore Cowboy (1989), My Own Private Idaho (1991), and To Die For (1995) — further established him not only as a prominent voice in New Queer Cinema but also as a poet of alienation and an astute observer of subcultures existing on the margins of society and of a celebrity and media-obsessed culture. At the end of the 1990s, as his collaboration with Ben Affl eck and Matt Damon on Good Will Hunting (1997) turned out to be a crossover hit that won Oscars for Best Screenplay and, for Robin Williams, Best Supporting Actor, Van Sant found himself in the middle of Hollywood’s race to catch up with the growing critical and fi nancial success of the Indies. But instead of taking part in one of the numerous tame products resulting from studio attempts to marry Indie hipness with big budgets, Van Sant somehow ended up helming the most notorious project of the decade, a shot-by-shot remake of Psycho (1998), and then following it with another variation on the reclusive mentor/young prodigy theme in Finding Forrester (2000).