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The Happy Film

Stefan Sagmeister believes there must be more to life. Pursuing three experiments, he seeks to become a better person. But real life creeps in and he travels closer to himself than ever intended.
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Overview

Austrian designer Stefan Sagmeister is doing well. He lives in New York City, the city of his dreams, designing album covers for the Rolling Stones, Jay-Z, and the Talking Heads. But in the back of his mind he suspects that there must be something more. He decides to turn himself into a design project. Can he redesign his personality to become a better person? He pursues three controlled experiments of meditation, drugs, and therapy, grading himself along the way. But real life creeps in and confounds the process: art, sex, love, and death prove impossible to disentangle. His unique designs and painfully personal experiences mark a journey that travels closer to himself than ever intended.

About

Stefan Sagmeister formed the New York based Sagmeister Inc. in 1993 and has since designed for clients as diverse as the Rolling Stones and the Guggenheim Museum. Besides two Grammys, he also won practically every important international design award. In 2012 young designer Jessica Walsh became a partner and the company was renamed to Sagmeister & Walsh. His Happy Show became the most visited graphic design exhibit in history.

By This Director

Ben Nabors is a documentary filmmaker and founder of {group theory}, a Brooklyn-based production studio. He produced and directed William and the Windmill, which took home the Documentary Feature Grand Jury Award at the 2013 South by Southwest Film Festival. In 2013 Filmmaker magazine named Ben among “The 25 New Faces of Independent Film.” In 2016, his second feature documentary The Happy Film, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. In 2017, it opened theatrically in Europe to a top 10 ranking in the box office and debuted at #6 on iTunes (documentary) in North America.

By This Director

The Happy Film

01: The Happy Film

Designer Stefan Sagmeister is doing well but he suspects that there must be something more. Pursuing three experiments–three months each–he decides to turn himself into a design project to become a happier person. But real life proves tough to disentangle from it all.

95 min