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The Boston Globe

Movies

How Benh Zeitlin tamed ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’

‘A film is such a gigantic thing to bring into the world,” Benh Zeitlin says, “that it creates its own fate in a lot of ways.” The fate of Zeitlin’s debut feature, “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” which he directed and co-wrote, would seem never to have been in doubt. It won the Grand Jury Prize for drama at Sundance this year and then earned raves at the Cannes Film Festival’s Un Certain Regard competition for works by younger, innovative filmmakers. It opens in Boston Friday.

Zeitlin, 29, was here recently to promote the film, along with its two stars, Quvenzhané “Nazie” Wallis and Dwight Henry. Yet the actors’ having ended up in the film is a reminder of just how uncertain the fate of “Beasts” once was.

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