Film Review: Art of the Prank
by Danny G. Shipka, Journalism and Mass Communication Educator, Sept., 2018
“Marini makes the creative choice of foregoing a narrator, allowing Skaggs to tell his own story, giving audiences a glimpse into his past through his own eyes. The story is an interesting one as we watch him grow as a young artist in New York to Viet Nam protester during the late 1960s—using his art to garner media attention. It was during this time Skaggs realized the extent that the media shapes public opinion and as he put it, “skews a story to fit their own agendas.” Thus began Skaggs’s career in manipulating and exploiting the media, not only to further his artistic endeavors but also to use it to showcase its vulnerability and ego.“
The Art of the Prank
by Movie Critic ND, October 1, 2017
“Skaggs and his various co-conspirators, many of whom are interviewed here, have skillfully manipulated the media for decades, and this film is a masterful, 4.5 our of five star reveal of some of the tricks these magicians use. We can only hope that Skaggs and those he inspires might one day find themselves out of a job, though the way things are going, I doubt it.”
Hoaxes, Harrison & Harlots
by Hannah Brown, The Jerusalem Post, July 6, 2017
“In this era where the new way to tell someone “I disagree with you” is to accuse them of reporting “fake news,” it’s a good time to look at the life of one of the most famous pranksters of all time, Joey Skaggs. He is the subject of the new documentary The Art of the Prank, directed by Andrea Marini, which will be shown on YES Docu on July 7 at 10:30 p.m.”
NJ Film Fest preview:
‘Art of the Prank’ doc looks at an anti-fake news pioneer
by Jay Lustig, NJArts.net, January 28, 2017
“Decades ahead of his time, Joey Skaggs started thinking about things like fake news and alternative facts — and doing something about it. His efforts are chronicled in the entertaining and enlightening documentary, “Art of the Prank”…
Declarations of Independence:
The New Jersey Film Festival returns with a slate of movies you won’t find anywhere else
by Erica Chayes Wida, CentralJersey.com, January 26, 2017
“Mr. Marini’s “Art of the Prank” follows Joey Skaggs’ evolution as an artist and prankster and highlights his most recent hoax, one that evolved from a media bit to a fake documentary–something like a mockumentary that has the viewer thinking it’s real.”
Timely and Award-Winning Documentary Art of The Prank Premieres at the New Jersey Film Festival on Sunday, January 29, 2017
by Al Nigrin, Patch.com, January 23, 2017
“Here is the interview I conducted with Joey Skaggs and Art of The Prank Producer Judy Drosd and Director Andrea Marini…”
Fake news? This guy practically invented it.
by Charles Runnells, The News-Press, January 22, 2017
“It’s a sensational story and a controversial character,” Marini says. “He’s doing something extremely creative. He’s an artist. He’s a painter. And the televisions and newspapers are his canvas.”
An Interview With Joey Skaggs [Cover story. Interview is on P6]
by Gary Wein, New Jersey Stage 2017, January 21, 2017
Skaggs quickly acquired an international reputation as a cultural satirist and media critic… New Jersey Stage spoke with Joey about his career and the documentary about his work called Art of the Prank.
Art of the Prank
by Gary Wein, New Jersey Stage 2017, January 21, 2017
One of the most intriguing films at the New Jersey Film Festival Spring 2017 is Art of the Prank, a documentary about Joey Skaggs that was directed by Andrea Marini. Skaggs is both an artist and a professional prankster. As this documentary follows his escapades, it offers a simultaneously funny and very alarming look at the propaganda and disinformation fed to the unsuspecting public every day by the mainstream media.
16th annual Santa Fe Film Festival: Review of select festival films
by Michael Abartemarco, Santa Fe New Mexican, December 9, 2016
Art of the Prank is a laugh-out-loud documentary with a pertinent message for our times, when fake and exaggerated news stories proliferate and people readily believe what they’re told instead of investigating and engaging in critical thinking.
8 reviews from the St. Louis International Film Festival
by Gabe Hartwig, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, November 4, 2016
In “Art of the Prank,” video and news coverage from Skaggs’ earlier pranks appear alongside footage that documents the making of his latest project, “Pandora’s Hope,” a documentary that takes aim at GMOs. It’s a timely reminder not to believe everything you see.
SLIFF 2016 Interview: Joey Skaggs – Subject of ART OF THE PRANK
by Tom Stockman, We are Movie Geeks, November 2, 2016
Chronicling the most demanding hoax of Skaggs’ career, filmmaker Andrea Marini provides privileged access to the thoughts and actions of this most unconventional man, following the evolution of an artist who has dedicated his life to seeking social change by relentlessly challenging the status quo. Joey Skaggs took the time to talk to We Are Movie Geeks about ART OF THE PRANK…
Andrea Marini: Joey Skaggs and Art of the Prank
by Travis Johnson, FilmInk.com.au, July 15, 2016
For his first film, Andrea Marini was presented with the perfect opportunity to train his camera on a notoriously slippery subject: art-prankster Joey Skaggs, who has been hoaxing gullible media organs for decades now, convincing baffled talk show hosts of the existence of dog brothels, celebrity sperm auctions, mobile confessionals for the sinner on the go, and much more. We reached out to Marini to find out what we could about the challenges of documenting Mr Skaggs’ weird world…
Art of the Prank (Revelation Perth International Film Festival)
by Travis Johnson, FilmInk.com.au, July 7, 2016
…Marini approaches Skaggs’ irreverence with reverence, and it’s hard not to get caught up in it all. Skaggs himself comes across as an affably angry individual who is fighting back against what he sees as pervasive institutional evil and corruption with the tools at his disposal…
…After decades working under various noms de guerre to further his plots, Joey Skaggs deserves a little time in the sun, and Art of the Prank is a fitting tribute.
Strange days, indeed
by Mark Naglazas, The Western Australian, June 30, 2016
The callowness of the media is the subject on another highlight of the documentary section of this year’s Revelation, The Art of the Prank, an account of the colourful career of famed new York artist and hoaxer Joey Skaggs.
…Astutely, this run through of Skaggs’ most memorable ruses, each of which reveals not simply the gullibility of the media but the general public’s appetite for the silliness he’s peddling, is framed by his latest stunt…
Art of the Prank at Revelation Perth International Film Festival
by Julian Wright, Communitynews.com.au Eastern Reporter, June 29, 2016
WAY before those Jackass man-children went on their years-long parade of juvenile pranks and stunts, there was Joey Skaggs.
The polar opposite of that loud, brash and obnoxious ragtag team of envelope pushers, Skaggs is a quiet, likeable fellow who put more thought and effort into one prank than what was put into a whole series of Jackass…
Amusing and surprising, Art of the Prank serves as a reminder to journalists to double-check their contacts because you never know when you are being Punk’d.
Film Festival Roundup: Lower East Side Film Festival Unveils Winners…
by Kate Erbland, Indiewire, June 16, 2016
EXCLUSIVE: The 6th Annual Lower East Side Film Festival and their 2016 panel of judges, including Ethan Hawke, Cindy Tolan, Steve Farneth and Raul Castillo have announced their winners… Best of Fest, The LESFF Prix D’Or–
“Art of the Prank”–By Andrea Marini
Revelation International Film Festival Launch with
preview of documentary feature Art of the Prank
by Sarah Stopforth, Dircksey magazine, June 15, 2016
Art of the Prank was hysterical, sometimes shocking and ridiculous, but mostly inspiring and thought provoking. The media influences us daily and Joey, through his art, reminds us: Don’t believe everything you’re told.
If You’re Reading This, You’ve Already Been Conned:
Joey Skaggs Doc Premieres in LES
by Spencer Roth-Rose, The New York Observer, June 13, 2016
A new documentary detailing the greatest hits of Skaggs’ hoaxing career opened up the Lower East Side Film Festival on Thursday night. Art of the Prank, directed by Italian newcomer Andrea Marini, is both an upbeat summary of decades of mischief,… and an intimate portrait of an earnest man earnestly engaged in the business of tomfoolery.
Art of the Prank
by Andrew Peirce, AB Film Review, June 11, 2016
Some documentaries have a interesting idea or subject and fail to deliver that in an entertaining manner. Fortunately, Art of the Prank is both entertaining as well as very, very enlightening. Joey Skaggs is an intriguing and relatable individual. He wants to make changes in the world, and can do that through the way he knows best.
Watch Out, New York City: Hoax Master Joey Skaggs Is in Town
by Vida Weisblum, The New York Observer, June 8, 2016
New Yorkers best beware because Skaggs is back in town, although he claims not to have any tricks up his sleeve—at least for the time being. Tomorrow, Art of the Prank, a new documentary about Skaggs’ extensive and ever-thriving career, will open the Lower East Side Film Festival. The Festival, which got its start in 2011, marks an appropriate setting for the film, as the Brooklyn-native performed many of his first pranks on the Lower East Side…
Andrea Marini’s “Art of the Prank” Pays Tribute to
Artist and Media Hoaxster Joey Skaggs
by Traven Rice, The Lo-Down, June 8, 2016
The Lower East Side Film Festival is kicking off their 2016 lineup Thursday night with Art of the Prank, an excellent documentary about the multimedia satirist Joey Skaggs. Skaggs, a former downtown NY artist who studied, and later taught, at SVA, is considered by many to be the godfather of the media hoax. His live antics are witty theatrical events that spring out of social activism and wry commentary, often involving a large team of co-conspirators that stay “in character” for months at a time…The film won a special jury mention at the 2016 Slamdance Film Festival and has screened in festivals internationally since then, but this is its New York premiere. Both Skaggs and the director, Andrea Marini will be in attendance on Thursday evening.
Meet the King of All Media Hoaxes at the LES Film Festival
by Kavitha Surana, Bedford + Bowery, June 2, 2016
…The headliner for opening night is the premier of The Art of the Prank, about a mischievous LES artist who loves nothing more than exposing the media’s hunger for sensational story with outrageous tall tales that sound just (barely) plausible enough to swallow. Lambasting the media has certainly been in fashion this election season, but no one has been doing it longer and in better style than Joey Skaggs…
Acclaimed Joey Skaggs Film ‘Art of the Prank’ to Be Featured at
San Francisco and NYC Film Festivals
by Lori Dorn, Laughing Squid, Wednesday, June 1, 2016
In September 2015, we wrote about Art of the Prank, a full-length documentary about legendary prankster Joey Skaggs and his hilariously glorious history of manipulating the media. Since that time, the film has played internationally to great acclaim…
The Lower East Side Film Festival is back with pranks, panels and a pool party
by Joshua Rothkopf, TimeOut New York, Thursday, May 26, 2016
Culture jamming and those “ubiquitous” billboards
by Sean Phillips, Nooga.com, Sunday, April 17, 2016
One of the masters of culture jamming is the great Joey Skaggs, a personal hero of mine. His pranking, hoaxing and general toying with the media for years have paved the way for pranksters of my generation. …Skaggs is the subject of the wonderful film “Art of the Prank”, which you should watch immediately.
The Godfather of the Media Hoax
by Naomi Pitcairn, Times Quotidian, Friday, April 8, 2016
A rarity in any day and age, Joey Skaggs has succeeded in getting media attention to an issue nobody in the media wants to look at: the unreliability of the media. He has successfully fooled the mainstream news outlets over and over again with absurd but biting false narratives.
CUFF presents the chronicles of Joey Skaggs’ career in ‘The Art of the Prank’
by Breanna Whipple, Beatroute, Monday, April 4, 2016
The Art of the Prank is an aesthetically striking documentary that chronicles Skaggs’ fascinating career as a professional anti-establishment prankster. Having pulled off truly unbelievable stories over a large magnitude of decades, his in-cheek manner is unlike anything that has yet to be offered.
THE OL’ FILM FLAM
by Doug Harvey, DougH On the Go, Monday, April 2, 2016
…the wealth of historical documentation delivers the real meat of Skaggs’ practice, next to which any discursive analysis pales. “Art of the Prank” also contains a doozy of a structural poetic as its major plot device — following the artist through the trials and tribulations of his latest leger-de-brain, which involves stem cells, GMOs, and the very film that is tracking its devious development.
ArcLight’s Slamdance Cinema Club Expands to Chicago
by HR Staff, Hollywood Reporter, March 1, 2016
‘Fursonas,’ ‘Honey Buddies’ and ‘Art of the Prank’ are the festival films that will be screened as a part of the series….Both ArcLight Hollywood and Chicago will screen two films each month from the 2016 Slamdance Film Festival, followed by a filmmaker Q&A.
“We are proud to bring these fascinating films to our ArcLight guests, knowing that these exclusive global cinema selections direct from this year’s Slamdance Film Festival will find an equally excited audience among the culturally rich moviegoers in Chicago,” said Gretchen McCourt, evp of cinema programming for ArcLight.
5 Great Films From the 2016 Slamdance Film Festival
by Greg Cwik, Indiewire, February 4, 2016
The hoax with the most. Joe Skaggs, prank artist par excellence and professional ball-buster, is the subject of this voyeuristic film. Skaggs, a 70-year-old “culture jammer,” has been an enigmatic presence for 50 years…
What ART OF THE PRANK reveals about news media, featuring
MAKING A MURDERER, PEACE OFFICER, and THE HUNTING GROUND
by Chris Lambert, Film Colossus, February 3, 2016
…We’re provided with all the necessary information to have the realization the film want[s] us to have, to arrive at the main point through our own introspection and analysis. It’s like the 90/10 rule of kissing. You lean 90, you let the other person go the last 10. It can be shocking if someone just leans in and kisses you. It can be really intense and romantic if someone leans close enough to kiss you but doesn’t kiss you, challenging you to make the final move.
The Hidden Stars of This Year’s Sundance: Hoaxes, Hucksters, and Glamorous Frauds
by Brandon Harris, The New Yorker, February 2, 2016
…One film at Slamdance, Andrea Marini’s “Art of the Prank,” devotes itself to the career of the fraud artist Joey Skaggs, the so-called godfather of the media hoax, who in the course of his career created fake institutions like the Celebrity Sperm Bank and Portofess, a mobile Catholic confessional booth that drew media attention when Skaggs stationed it outside the 1992 Democratic National Convention.
Slamdance 2016: The awards, trailers and more. Updated through 1/30
by David Hudson, Fandor, January 29, 2016
Jury Honorable Mention for Documentary Feature: Art of the Prank, dir. by Andrea Marini.
Slamdance Awards: ‘Million Dollar Duck’ & ‘Fursonas’ Among Indie Winners
Jury Honorable Mention for Documentary Feature: ART OF THE PRANK, dir., by Andrea Marini by Dominic Patten, Deadline, January 28, 2016
…Shining a spotlight on an interesting person whose mission isn’t likely to get exposure from the media, since the media is his deserving victim. Told with a mischievous glee, the artfulness of this film mirrors its content.
Slamdance Spotlight: Art of the Prank
Slamdance TV, January 27, 2016
…Andrea Marini: “This is a ‘fuck you status quo’ film. Slamdance is a ‘fuck you’ film festival.”
Joey Skaggs: “We’re ‘fuck you’ kind of guys…”
[Watch the video]
On the Ground at Slamdance 2016: A wide array of voices, as subversive and vital as ever.
by Alece Oxendine, Fandor, January 27, 2016
If you don’t know who Joey Skaggs is, know this: he is a f*cking national treasure! One of the best pranksters in history, Skaggs has consistently exposed the chronic gullibility of the American news media. We see him provide comical and sometimes biting commentary on our society in Art of the Prank, all carried out with deadpan precision…
Director/DP Andrea Marini on Prank Maestro Joey Skaggs and
the Slamdance Doc Art of the Prank
by Soheil Rezayazdi, Filmmaker, January 27, 2016
Art of the Prank documents the latest elaborate hoax from Joey Skaggs, an infamous culture-jammer who’s been pranking the media since the 1960s. The film marks the feature debut of writer, director and co-cinematographer Andrea Marini. Art of the Prank blends new footage of a prank-in-progress – his latest target: film festivals – with decades of archival material. In the interview below, Marini speaks about the style and structure of the film…
ART OF THE PRANK: Slamdance Film Festival, Director: Andrea Marini
by Brinley Froelich, SLUG, January 24, 2016
…what Skaggs aims for is to get people to not only laugh, but to think critically. What defines our reality is so often what we want it to be defined as, and we become so complacent in that skewed worldview that we’ll believe anything that matches up. Skaggs wants you to push that limit, and he’ll get right in your face through any angle he can to get you to do so.
ART OF THE PRANK
Interview with Andrea Marini by Chris Lambert, Film Colossus, January 22, 2016
I think Art of the Prank is really fascinating, especially with how needy and demanding 21st century media has become. There are so many content providers thirsty for a story that will get them views, likes, recognition. Who holds places accountable? Well, for almost 50 years, it’s been Joey Skaggs. Art of the Prank is Andrea Marini’s documentary about the work and life of Joey Skaggs, and even features Joey reflecting on it all…
Documentary looks at the ‘Art of the Prank’
Interview by Scott Iwasaki, The Park Record, January 22, 2016
“Interestingly in ‘Art of the Prank,’ the current narrative is an ongoing prank,” Skaggs said during a telephone interview from an undisclosed location. “The film is the exposé and it will be interesting to see how film festival people will respond. Slamdance, on the other hand, tuned right in, gleefully, I would imagine. They got it.”
Prank God: Joey Skaggs On Bio Doc at Slamdance
The Alt Morning Show 101.9fm, January 21, 2016
2016 Slamdance Interview: Andrea Marini (Art of the Prank)
Interview with Andrea Marini by Steve Rickinson, Indie NYC, January 21, 2016
…I decided from the very beginning to approach this film with a cinema-vérité directorial style. This conferred the realism I was looking for and created a good contrast between the story I was following, the interviews and the archival footage…
Director, Editor, Producer: Andrea Marini
Slamdance 2016 Preview: Meet The Filmmakers, Part 2 [slide #5]
by Ben Umstead, Screen Anarchy, January 15, 2016
Moving beyond the protagonist for a second, the story of Art of the Prank is really about determination and passion in doing whatever you want to do, however you want to do it! Which is, after all, what it takes to make great art that makes a strong statement…
Watch: Step Inside the Mobile Confessional Booth in Exclusive ‘Art of the Prank’ Clip
by Mike Lown, Indiewire, January 20, 2016
As the saying goes, “It’s a fool who thinks he can’t be fooled.” New York artist and media hoaxer Joey Skaggs has turned such a quote into his life’s work, devising countless pranks that have garnered worldwide attention from legitimate news outlets across the country.
…Now his career has been made into a documentary by Andrea Marini. Entitled “The Art of Prank,” the doc will be premiering at the Slamdance Film Festival. Check out our exclusive clip…
ART OF THE PRANK: L’uomo che ha truffato la Cnn
by Alessandro Parla, Libero, December 2, 2015
Skaggs inventa news, i media abboccano. Marini: “Nel mio film las sua ultimat fantasia”
Slamdance Festival Competition Lineup Unveiled (EXCLUSIVE)
by Dave McNary, Variety, November 30, 2015
The narrative competition has 12 titles and eight have been selected in the documentary category.
Notable titles include Leonardo Guerra Seragnoli’s drama “Last Summer” (pictured above), starring Rinko Kikuchi, Yorick van Wageningen and Lucy Griffiths; Derek Kimball’s drama “Neptune,” set on an island off the coast of Maine and centered on an orphan girl raised by the church; Paul Taylor’s dialogue-free “Driftwood,” starring Joslyn Jensen, Paul C. Kelly and Michael Fentin; and Andrea Marini’s “Art of the Prank,” starring Joey Skaggs, Robert Forster and Peter Maloney.
Joey Skaggs, il truffatore dei media si racconta
by LabIULM clipreporter, Nov 30, 2015
L’artista americano, considerato uno dei padri del cultural jamming, giovedì 26 novembre
ha incontrato gli studenti dello Iulm in vista dell’uscita del film “Art of the prank”
Podcast EP. 81: Joey Skaggs and Andrea Marini –
Subject and Director of ART OF THE PRANK
by Jon of All Trades
“Joey Skaggs is the godfather of the media hoax. For more than 50 years, Joey has been fooling the media with pranks such as the Celebrity Sperm Bank, the Cathouse for Dogs, the Fat Squad, and Portofess (the mobile confessional booth). He’s pranked virtually every major media outlet and is considered one of the world’s greatest living satirists.
His story has been chronicled by Andrea Marini in Art of the Prank, and both he and Andrea sat down with me at the Denver Film Festival to discuss their film, the elaborate prank at the center of the film, how the media has (and hasn’t) changed since Joey began his career, how everyone could stand to be more media literate and a whole lot more…
…The story of Joey Skaggs’s artistic career is captivating enough on its own, but is enhanced by Andrea’s propulsive and thoughtful direction. I highly recommend this film not only for its entertainment value, but for its underlying message as well.
MOVIES: Denver Film Festival: Five ways to go out with a bang
by John Wenzel, The Denver Post, November 13, 2015
The 38th Denver Film Festival has plowed through dozens of films and panels. But in true movie fashion, it has been saving its big climax for the third act. The Nov. 4-15 event wraps up this weekend with red carpet screenings, awards, celebrity guests and more. Here are five can’t-miss offerings for which tickets are still available…
“The Art of the Prank”
The media’s ability to shape public opinion gets exploited in this documentary, which follows longtime activist and culture jammer Joey Skaggs as he pranks various newspapers, TV networks and radio stations. Is Skaggs’ humorous subversion art, civil disobedience or self-indulgent amusement? Skaggs and director Andrea Marini will be there for a Q&A after each screening. (2 p.m. Nov. 13, 3:45 p.m. Nov. 14, 11:30 a.m. Nov. 15 at UA Denver Pavilions)…
Denver Film Festival. Take One
by Tracy Shaffer, Huffington Post Denver, November 11, 2015
“A good hoax promises a good story and visuals”, says trickster Joey Skaggs, and he should know. Documentary film, The Art of the Prank follows this fine artist-turned-performance prankster from 60s radical to master media buster…
SVA First Person: Joey Skaggs on the ‘Art of the Prank’
October 30, 2015
Long before social media, hidden camera prank shows likePunk’d and Jackass, and culture-jamming activist groups like The Yes Men, SVA alumnus and former faculty member Joey Skaggs (BFA 1982 Media Arts) had already turned the media hoax into an art form…
‘Art of the Prank’, An Upcoming Documentary About the
Glorious History of Prankster Joey Skaggs
by Lori Dorn, Laughing Squid, September 23, 2015
…Throughout his glorious history Skaggs has, in part, pranked a variety major news outlets, staged political hoaxes and played off the egos of popular talk shows hosts…
HuffPost Weird News on Facebook
September 9, 2015
If you’re in the media, you’re probably an idiot. So says Joey Skaggs, who convinced journalists that he runs a whorehouse for dogs, a celebrity sperm bank, and other crazy things. Watch and laugh.