Diego Ongaro and Daniel Vecchione (Down With the King)

Season 1, Ep. 111

Down with the King stars rapper Freddie Gibbs as a rapper named Money Merc who disappears for a while to a rural farmhouse to work on his new album. But even as he saws lumber and butchers pigs, he can't escape the pressures of the rap game. 

Our guests on this episode, director Diego Ongaro and cinematographer Daniel Vecchione, explain how they achieved the documentary-like feel of the film — and how they created a seemingly packed concert scene while following strict COVID-19 protocols. (Vecchione gives a shout out to BlackMagic Pocket Cinema 6K cameras with anamorphic lenses.)

They also talk about how Freddie Gibbs brought his character to life, and the cinematic allure of the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts, where they shot the film.

Down With the King premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in July.

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