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Party-time: Ben Affleck and Harvey Weinstein Dissect Indie Film

The post-screening chatter after “Company Men” premiere

Ben Affleck, flanked by Harvey Weinstein during the after-party for “Company Men,” wanted to know why the movie industry no longer produces the kind of interesting independent film that it did, say, 10 years ago.

And why, he wanted to know, is it so hard to sustain independent film companies? Affleck is in the midst of editing the film he recently directed, "The Town."

Why doesn’t anybody make the kinds of movies Miramax used to make, he asked pointedly.

“We’re making those films,” Harvey responded quickly. But he had a more complex answer, which had to do with American audiences being unwilling  to see less than cheerful movies.

“The audiences have changed,” he said.

He was frustrated that “The Road,” a movie that has won critical acclaim, has made only $8 million.

And he pointed out that “The Hurt Locker,” which has garnered a small mountain of critical awards this season, has made only $13 million so far. 

Then John Wells walked up, and that was the end of the indie film examination.