James Bastone, '22

November 18, 2022

Movie lover turns passion into a podcast.

James Bastone’s interest in film began during a general education class taken during his first semester at University of Richmond. “After taking that initial film class I took another the following semester and decided I should at least pursue a minor in film studies,” he shared. “Then I took a couple more and started to see that I really enjoyed what I was learning. Fast forward three years and it’s not only an interest but a passion.”

Shortly after that first class, he joined WDCE 90.1: UR Radio, the student-run and operated independent radio station on campus, but while locked down during the pandemic he turned exclusively to podcasting.

Bastone’s podcast, “Rumors, Money, and Movies,” has recorded weekly since 2019. The show provides an in-depth analysis of the movie industry in its entirety—movie news (rumors), the economics of filmmaking (money), and the art of cinema (movies). Bastone has interviewed aspiring artists, doctoral professors, movie professionals, and “plain old movie lovers” throughout the series. 

He has covered movies from “Jurassic World” and “The Matrix” to “Taxi Driver” and “Godzilla vs. Kong.” But one of his favorite episodes is The Oscar Post-Show. “This year was a lot of fun because I recorded the podcast immediately after the end of the show,” he shared. “I invited anyone to come on and there were some characters who joined. A great memory.”

He also recalls an interview with Bruce Nash, founder and president of The Numbers, a website that tracks box office revenue and conducts research services. “It will always be a special interview because it was my first with a professional in the industry. He has been so humble and respectful whenever we talk,” Bastone said.

Bastone hones his skills in on-screen productions as well. This fall he worked as a production assistant on an indie film shooting in Charlottesville and Richmond. “Long-term I want to be in the entertainment industry, hopefully on the creative side,” Bastone said. “Our Film Studies program might be small, but we have great professors that have taught me so much.” 

When asked about his favorite movie, Bastone shared that “La Grande Bellezza” (The Great Beauty) is the only movie that has changed his life. “I can’t recommend it enough.”

His combination of a business administration and film studies major with an Italian minor will take him far in the industry, but Bastone isn’t in too much of a hurry after he graduates in December.

“I want to take some adventures and see the world, both professionally and personally. I have my whole life to work.”