Flavorwire Premiere: The NASA-Scored Book Trailer for Sarah Gerard’s ‘Binary Star’


In November, Flavorwire spoke to author Sarah Gerard about her forthcoming debut novel, Binary Star. At the time, Gerard talked about the story behind the novel, the joys and tribulations of publishing with a small press, and the Kickstarter campaign for her national book tour. The campaign, we’re happy to say, was a success. And in more ways than one: not only did Gerard reach her funding goals, she also blazed a trail for small-press authors who might do the same. Along the way, too, she demonstrated an abiding love for independent publishing, especially through a series of videos from the book tour, an interview video with authors like John Reed and Eileen Myles, and an excellent book trailer.

The videos from the campaign, which should be studied and ripped off by independent presses and big publishers alike, were directed by David Formentin (who is also Sarah’s husband). Formentin’s most recent project was Tzniut, which world-premiered at SXSW and won Best Narrative Short at the Hamptons International Film Festival. (It also played at film festivals in London, Zagreb, New Orleans, New Hampshire, San Francisco, and San Diego.) He’s currently developing his first feature film.

And the book tour, Kickstarter campaign, and videos seem to have paid off in more than just funding: word about Gerard’s novel is spreading fast. Already this month, Binary Star has received a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly and glowing praise from the LA Times and NPR. And the novel, we should add, has not yet been released! Binary Star, in fact, launches this evening at Brooklyn’s powerHouse Arena, where Gerard will be in conversation with Kate Zambreno. She’ll also be reading at COUPLET, a brand-new reading series at The Delancey in Manhattan, on January 23rd, and she’ll talk with Valeria Luiselli at Soho’s McNally Jackson on January 26th.

In advance of these events (and the book’s publication), we’re proud to premiere David Formentin’s trailer for Binary Star. Not only does the video faithfully reflect the story, but it stands on its own legs as an excellent piece of filmmaking.

And if you’re curious about the story behind the trailer, here’s some background from Gerard and Formentin:

We knew we were going to do another trailer after the success of the first one, and we also knew we were going to take another cross-country trip in the summer to shoot David’s second film. So we decided to use the road trip to gather footage that mirrored the road trip in the book. David wanted to make something that would tell a story, so we used ourselves as characters. Then last week, NASA released a bunch of audio clips on Soundcloud. We decided to cut the trailer’s footage to NASA’s audio.