Earlier today, Adam Yauch, founding member of the Beastie Boys, passed away from cancer. He was 47.
Yet Yauch, who was best known as rapper MCA in the multi-platinum-selling trio, also branched out into film. In 2002, he launched Oscilloscope Pictures, which has since put out acclaimed indie films including "Exit Through the Gift Shop," "Bellflower," "We Need to Talk About Kevin," "Meek's Cutoff" and "The Messenger." They also distributed Yauch's directorial debut, the basketball documentary "Gunnin' For That #1 Spot," in 2008.
Prior to Oscilloscope, his group, the Beastie Boys, worked with directors like Spike Jonze, who shot the awesomely retro '70s video for "Sabotage" and the band's 2006 concert film, "Awesome: I Fuckin' Shot That!"
Yauch displayed the same wacky sensibility when he assumed directorial duties for the group's videos under the pseudonym of Nathanial Hörnblowér. His video for "Body Movin," included clips from '60s cult movie "Danger: Diabolik," and "Intergalactic" was staged as a cheap '50s monster film.
Oscilloscope's site shows the trademark sense of humor Yauch brought to all of his projects, with the mission statement: "We distribute unique, independently produced films in theaters, on TV, DVD, internationally, and via osmosis. We are currently building a time machine. Check back soon for more info about folding time and space."
Yauch's eclectic taste in movies was also showcased in a profile on Criterion's web site, where he named his top 10 Criterion movies, including flicks by Federico Fellini, Akira Kurosowa and Nicolas Roeg.