In the movie Grindhouse, there were breaks with trailers for fake movies. Robert Rodriguez did one for a movie called Machete and decided it would make a good real movie. Now, in light of the news from Arizona, it takes on a new dimension.

The original Machete trailer from Grindhouse had nudity, but it didn’t have Robert DeNiro. There are many similarities, especially in the openings. Compare the two versions:

My personal favorite trailer from Grindhouse was the one Edgar Wright directed for a fake film called Don’t:

The Machete story illustrates a point I made in the “Five Possible Next Big Things” essay about the future of film. Filming a trailer first and using that to get people excited to make a feature is not only a smart strategy for getting a movie made, it could very well be the only way independent films get made. Already there are a number of features that come out of short films, such as Frozen River. How soon before that process streamlines itself down to trailers first?