If you've got 15 minutes to kill and any kind of affection for street artist Banksy and/or his possibly prankish, Oscar-nominated documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop, you could conceive of a far worse way to spend that time than to watch this short film on the artist himself, which appeared on YouTube a couple of weeks back (though I just learned about now...dammit).
The filmmakers claim that they shot the footage back in 2006 and submitted it to various film festivals back in 2007. Stating that they got little recognition for the work, they resigned themselves to failure until Exit hit and became something of a cult success. So now they're just putting it out there, for free, possibly (probably) with the hopes that someone will like it enough to give them work as documentary filmmakers. The short is actually all around decent, so hey, they've got that going for them.
Elswhere in Banksy land, the LA Times has an interview up with Mr. Brain Wash himself, Thierry Guetta, in which he purports to be all the way real. Though there was a time when I believed that even the man himself was some kind of Banksy concoction, based on the interview and investigative reporting, I think I have to concede that the man exists and is every bit the goof he was portrayed to be in the film. The only thing that isn't completely firm at this point is exactly how much of a hand Banksy had in creating Guetta's Brain Wash persona. I still feel that Banksy likely pushed Guetta into his role as a walking, talking personification of the commercialization and hype machine that is the modern art world, but I guess that's still a matter for public debate.
Also, just in case you were wondering, Banksy still isn't allowed to show up at the Oscars in a monkey mask. Fascists.