Exclusive interview with Bruce Wagner and Renata Murez: A mysterious warrior and a practical hunter

Exclusive interview with Bruce Wagner and Renata Murez: A mysterious warrior and a practical hunter

Author: Daria White

Two of the direct apprentices of Carlos Castaneda talk about his legacy and memory in their lives. A short conversation with Bruce Wagner and Renata Murez featuring photos from the recent “Practical Dreaming” event in Moscow, that took place in May this year.

Preface

“Don Juan and don Genaro stepped back and seemed to merge with the darkness. Pablito held my forearm and we said good-by to each other. Then a strange urge, a force, made me run with him to the northern edge of the mesa. I felt his arm holding me as we jumped and then I was alone.“

— final words from the fourth book, the last one with don Juan present

(Carlos Castaneda, “Tales of Power” 1974; Part 3: The Sorcerer’s Explanation, Chapter 13: The Predilection of Two Warriors)

I. The interview: A mysterious warrior and a practical hunter (Exclusive)

Unexpected energy turns

From two of the people in the world who knew Carlos Castaneda better than any others, and who have taken a place on stage presenting his work, it was thrilling to learn about how it felt with him in the scene.

II. Articles about Castaneda events

Many partings and meetings

How it feels to find the steps of the Castaneda’s and don Juan’s teachings in Moscow, Russia and other places, and what his world really looks like now in this world.

I. The interview: A mysterious warrior and a practical hunter (Exclusive)

A. Introduction

Left to right: Renata Murez, Alexander Dergay, and Bruce Wagner at the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow (May 2019) (photo by “Tensegrity”)

At the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow in May this year, that was visited and conducted by two of the direct Carlos Castaneda apprentices, Bruce Wagner and Renata Murez, both of whom are well known to Russian public in the area, I searched for an opportunity to speak to the instructors directly. It was my heart’s intent to talk to and to interview the two figures who sat beside their teacher listening to the stories of the Nagual.

I had previously searched and found no traces of the famous Castaneda apprentices here in Russia (the last ones were lost somewhere around after 2017), until the ground was finally set for their appearance here again. And I wondered, how much different it would be from the books I’ve read so much, and whether they still kept his spirit and his set of mind.

In my article shortly after the event, I have presented how the movie, “The Secret of Carlos Castaneda” (Vladimir Maykov, 2018), and the workshop, “Practical Dreaming” (“Tensegrity”, 2019), have curiously intertwined to form a new beginning for those looking for new answers in the field of Castaneda’s teachings.

The “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow lasted 3 days (with a 4th optional extra day), and almost a 100 people learned how to get closer to their dreams and wishes. This was my first time at an event like this, and I was impressed in many ways.

It was unusual seeing how the books were suddenly turned into a practical guide spread over several days on how to reach one’s dream, with step-by-step turns and directions and a huge amount of Carlos Castaneda’s quotes. I was wondering about how this was done, and what stood behind the scenes for those who took direct participation in the making of events and arranging the finer details.

Bruce Wagner, novelist and screenwriter, interviewed Carlos Castaneda multiple times and also directed the early instructional films of “Tensegrity”. Renata Murez is a “Tensegrity” facilitator and instructor, and creative co-director at “Cleargreen” (who first facilitated “Tensegrity” back in 1993).

Those are the people who saw him come and go. To me, Reni is an image of a practical hunter from the chaparral around don Juan’s house1, whereas Bruce seems more like a mysterious warrior from the hills2.

From two of the people in the world who knew Carlos Castaneda better than any others, and who have taken a place on stage presenting his work, it was thrilling to learn about how it felt with him in the scene.

B. Retracing Carlos Castaneda’s steps

Participants listening at the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow (May 2019) (photo by “Tensegrity”)

Carlos Castaneda’s legacy in countries throughout the world is now presented by the “Tensegrity” and “Cleargreen” companies (founded by him in person), local groups mostly consisting of the facilitators who visit and help out at the events held by these organizations (and are certified by them), and people who know and love his books.

The events illustrate the practical side of the teachings presented at Carlos Castaneda’s workshops.
The books outline the scope of his work and don Juan’s teachings.
The people are everywhere around us in everyday life, though some say that “Castaneda boom” is already over.

While looking around for like-minded people, I find a lot among those who follow the same line, or a very similar to the one that Carlos Castaneda drew in his books.

C. Interview with Renata Murez

Renata (Reni) Murez (photo by “Tensegrity”)

Renata Murez was the one who surprised me the most with her composure, determination, and relaxed positivity. The one person she seemed who would easily tackle any practical situation with an upbeat solution, and keep smiling as she goes.

Notably, everyone she talks to, during the personal sessions, or when answering questions, she hugs after the conversation in a very friendly way, and I have heard the girls among the practitioners referring to her in the most admired and fascinated manner. For them, Reni obviously seems like a perfect woman figure, well known for her collectedness and being both an ear to listen to and a shoulder to cry on (and a mouth to speak great advise at times of loss).

“If you want entertainment or inspiration — read his [Carlos Castaneda’s] books. If you’re after the personal experience of what he writes about — do the events!”

(Renata Murez citing Carol Tiggs)

My approach

Interview at the “Practical Dreaming”
(For a full story of the interview and the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow, see my article from back in May).

Renata Murez, or Reni, how she is called by the group of her co-workers and participants who know her well, is a direct apprentice of Carlos Castaneda, a “Tensegrity” guide and instructor who is responsible for all day-to-day activities of the “Practical Dreaming” seminar. It is her part to do most of the speaking on stage, to outline the scope of exercise of the workshop for the participants, and to direct them through the materials provided. She seems more involved into daily activities in a very practical manner (when compared to Bruce, who is more the mysterious figure backstage with a lot of experience and thought on the matters in question), and her speech is always very clear and specific, pointing out guidelines for a person to catch on.

Reni’s sitting on stage cross-legged, very relaxed after a day’s work, and answering people’s questions about their dreams in a very calm way. I can see that she has a habit of hugging people after a conversation, and most participants find her manner very welcoming for a nice chat and opening up.

When I ask her about a short interview, though unplanned and unexpected, she answers with an upbeat “Yes”, and I ask my six questions while the others in line for answers are talking to Bruce. He is the one who alerts me to the fact that they are in process of answering questions for those who had been sent out by their groups.

To me, Reni is an image of a practical hunter from the chaparral around don Juan’s house1, whereas Bruce seems more like a mysterious warrior from the hills2.

Participants of the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow (May 2019) (photo by “Tensegrity”)

In Carlos Castaneda’s footsteps: what’s changed and what’s new

  1. Events now and then
  2. Preferences
  3. Facilitators
  4. Workshop in Moscow and other events
  5. Books
  6. Castaneda readers in the world

“Hunters must be exceptionally tight individuals,” he continued. “A hunter leaves very little to chance.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Journey to Ixtlan”, 1972; Chapter 6: Becoming a Hunter)

1. Events now and then

Question: How much different are the sessions now from back then with Carlos Castaneda on stage?

“In 1993—1995, Carlos would do a 1-hour lecture and show maybe 5 hours of movements, and then Florinda (author: Florinda Donnergrau3, one of Castaneda’s live-in apprentices and book authors from his group, one of his inner circle) would have a 1-hour lecture and another 5 hours of movements. This was very much about relating this to people, this was very new4.

We knew that what he talked about was hard for people to understand with normal awareness, so he had to move the people enough to understand what he was trying to teach.”

Quote: Renata Murez about the events back with Carlos Castaneda on stage:

“This was very much about relating this to people, this was very new.

We knew that what he talked about was hard for people to understand with normal awareness, so he had to move the people enough to understand what he was trying to teach.”

How much different is it now?

“You were here, you saw this. We do movement, we do personal tracking, or exploration.

Before it was more about teaching the human being that they have another side of them full of energy, to give them guidance. They had to be educated.

Now that it’s all set up, it’s so mainstream to talk about energy — higher self, better self, “I’m so out of energy today”, “My energy is telling me I shouldn’t go with you” — that what we do is teach people how to use the tools of Carlos Castaneda, the Tensegrity® tools, the discipline, the courage5, the state of no-doubt. How to bring it to activities of your daily life.”

2. Preferences

Question: Do you like them [sessions] better from this perspective when you are speaking?6

“Back then I was the one teaching the movements on stage.

Now it’s more about bringing the wisdom forward, choosing other people to teach movements7. Bruce & I really don’t have a preference though; I don’t think the movements are less important than the place on stage here. It is equally as important. For both you have to put your ego8 aside.”

Quote: Renata Murez about the events now:

“Now it’s more about bringing the wisdom forward, choosing other people to teach movements.”

3. Facilitators

Question: How do you choose your facilitators?

“Well our Facilitators will soon be our future teachers of Tensegrity®.

And they choose themselves. Yes, they choose themselves.

They go through an interview process, why do they want to do this now, whether they have enough personal space in their lives to do this, and then they carry on learning principles, giving their own small classes — all learning and experiencing Tensegrity® along the way.

So it’s really them picking us.”

Quote: Renata Murez about the facilitators:

“And they choose themselves.”

4. Workshop in Moscow and other events

Question: Is this event in Moscow city different from the ones you did in Berlin and other cities?

“This particular event — Practical Dreaming — is very similar to the one we did in Berlin9.

And the people of Russia are very responsive and very committed. In Russia they are really serious about what they do.

Quote: Renata Murez about Russia:

“And the people of Russia are very responsive and very committed. In Russia they are really serious about what they do.”

5. Books

Question: Do you write books?

“A couple already. I’m not putting them out yet.

As for Carol Tiggs10 — what her answer was when people asked her the same question: “What is there left to say? Carlos has done quite a good job. If you want entertainment or inspiration — read his books11. If you’re after the personal experience of what he writes about — do the events!”

Quote: Renata Murez citing Carol Tiggs about books and events:

“If you want entertainment or inspiration — read his [Carlos Castaneda’s] books. If you’re after the personal experience of what he writes about — do the events!”

6. Castaneda’s readers in the world

Question: Which country is the most prominent for Castaneda readers in your opinion?

“It’s been 18 years of us coming to Russia, and we’re fortified each time we come.

Because here in Russia there’s this innate understanding of what Carlos Castaneda speaks about which makes the transfer of his work easier.”

Quote: Renata Murez about Carlos Castaneda’s readers in Russia:

“Because here in Russia there’s this innate understanding of what Carlos Castaneda speaks about which makes the transfer of his work easier.”

D. Interview with Bruce Wagner

Bruce Wagner (photo by “Tensegrity”)

A figure hiding behind the scenes and rarely seen on stage, Bruce Wagner is nevertheless not less interesting, but rather more surrounded with secrets and mystery, or so it seems. The girls, I haven’t heard talk about him or refer to him in any way, and although he seems very closed, this adds weight to the few words and judgements that he utters.

Bruce has stories of times back when Castaneda was around him that are more spiritual rather than practical, and in a way, he is a walker in the sand of footsteps next to Carlos Castaneda’s, and don Juan’s, who he slightly reminds me of (if it wasn’t for the obvious inconsistency of appearances). Always using only a few words and showing only what he wants to show, according to the description of a warrior12, are the top points for this impression.

“It’s one dream and this is another. No dreams are alike. They have different elements to them.”

(Bruce Wagner)

My approach

Interview at the “Practical Dreaming”
(For a full story of the interview and the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow, see my article from back in May).

Bruce Wagner is a “Tensegrity” guide and instructor, who makes appearances alongside Renata Murez on most of the “Tensegrity” events around the world. His looks are very mysterious, yet charismatic and vigorous. Though Reni does most of the talking on stage during the events, they divide the time when answering the questions in introductory sessions and during closing up, and their relationship seems very friendly and sincere.

Bruce mostly wears dark clothes, has a range of tattoos reaching out to his hands and fingers, and is often on the move, though most of the time I saw him present in the background sitting with his phone or taking photos. When he does speak though, it is very impressive how his phrases are always to the point and give a very unusual perspective of the events mentioned. Whereas Reni would mostly take the line of answering my questions in view of Castaneda’s teachings, Bruce was more outspoken with his own perspective. He seems to have a very strong vision of his role in “Tensegrity”, as well as Renata, yet to me he seemed like a mysterious warrior2 alongside a more practical hunter1.

The amount of time allotted for plan questions runs out before I can interview Bruce after talking to Reni, so instead I carefully approach him after a substantial group of participants, who insist on taking photos, clear a little bit. It is closing time, and the scene is being demounted.

Participants in the sunlit room of the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow (May 2019) (photo by “Tensegrity”)

In Carlos Castaneda’s footsteps: what’s changed and what’s new

  1. Events now and then
  2. Preferences
  3. Facilitators
  4. Workshop in Moscow and other events
  5. Books
  6. Castaneda readers in the world

“You don’t bewitch to make warriors. To be a warrior you have to be crystal clear, like Eligio. There you have a man of courage!”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Separate reality”, 1971; Chapter 4)

1. Events now and then

Question: How much different are the sessions now from back then with Carlos Castaneda on stage?

“I don’t believe in comparison, because when you compare, you become a victim of nostalgia13. For me, it’s a dream, and then another dream14, you know what I mean?

Is there something different factually?

He was present. A Nagual15. One of the meanings of this is He Who Holds the Myth in his Hands. A poet, charismatic, and funny, and touching. And now he’s not here.

Carol Tiggs10 is here, she occasionally comes to seminars. She was the closest, his mirror image.

It is difficult to compare. No advantage for me to compare. It’s one dream and this is another. No dreams are alike. They have different elements to them.”

Quote: Bruce Wagner about the events back with Carlos Castaneda on stage and events now:

“It’s one dream and this is another. No dreams are alike. They have different elements to them.”

2. Preferences

Question: Do you like them [sessions] better from this perspective when you are speaking?

I assumed Bruce would refer to the topic of the ego8 he so clearly mentioned when answering my question about “The Secret of Carlos Castaneda” movie (see my article from back in May for more details), and voiced my expectations, yet this seemed to be quite a different issue.

“It is joyous and energizing for me to connect. There’s a joyfulness to it.

I’m directly engaged to it, but it’s a lot of work. I like to watch them do the magic passes, to hear them speak, to here Reni speak. There’s no vanity in it for me.”

Quote: Bruce Wagner about the events:

“There’s no vanity in it for me.”

3. Facilitators

Question: How do you choose your facilitators?

“That’s a Reni question (author: see Reni’s answer for more information).

Because she’s more involved in day-to-day activities, in making it. She is committed and passionate about the work.

It’s about perseverance, and continuity, desire to share the work.”

Quote: Bruce Wagner about the facilitators:

“That’s a Reni question.”

4. Workshop in Moscow and other events

Question: Is this event in Moscow city different from the ones you did in Berlin and other cities?

“I was present at one other event in Russia.

There’s something extraordinary about Russia. My ancestors are from Belarus, so I’m a little prejudiced here.”

At this point a young woman presents Reni and Bruce with handmade cats and wants to take a picture with both of them, and a very intelligent looking man comes by with his “Fire from Within” copy to be signed by Bruce (as a gift for pre-registering to the Armenian workshop). A number of others are dropping by as we talk after the closing time. The first two look extremely flushed and the creator of handmade cats positively flabbergasted and speechless.

They seem to be illustrating Bruce’s next point.

“I feel very close to Russia and there’s something about Russian practitioners that is very deep. A feeling different from anywhere else. There’s a depth here.

The spirit of place and the emotional and mystical depth of the Russians.”

Which is of course described by the Russian writers in very bright detail, and I mention it accordingly.

“Russian poets are very important. Dostoevsky, Turgenev are very important for me.”

Quote: Bruce Wagner about Russia:

“I feel very close to Russia and there’s something about Russian practitioners that is very deep. A feeling different from anywhere else. There’s a depth here.”

At this point another participant wants to take a picture, and he also asks about Bruce’s tattoos visible on his hands. To that the “Tensegrity” instructor answers that those are a map to the stars from an old movie16. He also used to live on these streets while he was a boy.

That provides a great background for my next question.

5. Books

Question: Do you write books or movies?

“I’ve written about 10 novels and some movies.”

Can I Google them?

“You can. “Wikipedia” will have the list. Then “Amazon” will tell you all about them.”

Do you have any favourites?

“It’s hard to say. You know, you invest so much in them. They are like children. If you have any, you don’t say it. Because other books will hear it.”

Quote: Bruce Wagner about books:

“They are like children. If you have any [favourites], you don’t say it. Because other books will hear it.”

6. Castaneda’s readers in the world

Question: Which country is the most prominent for Castaneda readers in your opinion?

“I actually don’t know. That’s a good question.

Russia has shamanistic history so it’s not a foreign thing.”

Quote: Bruce Wagner about Carlos Castaneda’s readers in Russia:

“Russia has shamanistic history so it’s not a foreign thing.”

E. Impressions

Signposts at the walls of the old Soviet building where the “Practical Dreaming” workshop took place

From the moment I heard that Castaneda’s direct apprentices were coming to Russia, I was doing my best to find the traces of them, and to learn of their connection to the book author I know so well.

Those most often mentioned in connection to him are the girls, or his live-in apprentices (Taisha Abelar, Patricia Partin, Florinda Donner-Grau, and Carol Tiggs), of which Patricia is dead since 1998, Florinda and Taisha gone, whereas of Carol it was known that she used to come to Russia at some point, and then there was nothing — a huge gap.

The Death Valley, where Partin’s abandoned Ford had been found, held a special charm for me, and yet a lot of questions remained unanswered, and I wanted to learn more.

And finally, through the movie and the social groups, I learned about two of his apprentices, direct though previously unmentioned in sources I had been flipping through, coming to Moscow.

In Carlos Castaneda’s footsteps: what’s changed and what’s new

The impression of speaking personally to someone who knew Carlos well is even greater than seeing them interviewed in the movie; for once, only your own creative idea shapes the scope of questions that you want to ask. Also, the weight of the change, of the time before and after his teachings were brought in and passed over, is easy to sense on one’s shoulders (for more details about the workshop, see my article from back in May).

II. Articles about Castaneda events

A. My articles about Castaneda events

My research in the field of Castaneda’s teachings and events has lead me to write a series of articles on the subject.

“This is the predilection of two warriors,” he said. “This earth, this world. For a warrior there can be no greater love.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Tales of Power” 1974; Part 3: The Sorcerer’s Explanation, Chapter 13: The Predilection of Two Warriors)

“The Secret of Carlos Castaneda”, a movie by Russian director Vladimir Maykov, and the “Practical Dreaming” workshop by Carlos Castaneda’s “Tensegrity”
(English)
May 2019

«Тайна Карлоса Кастанеды», фильм российского режиссера Владимира Майкова, и интерактивный семинар «Мечать практично» «Тенсегрити» Карлоса Кастанеды
(same article in Russian)
June 2019

Exclusive interview with Bruce Wagner and Renata Murez: A mysterious warrior and a practical hunter
(English)
July 2019

Эксклюзивное интервью с Брюсом Вагнером и Ренатой Мюрез: «Загадочный воин и практичный охотник»
(same article in Russian)
July 2019 (planned)

Another series of articles is being planned on topics and areas related to similar matters17 (to be published soon).

Remarks:

A map hanging in the building of the “Practical Dreaming” workshop in Moscow

1 hunter:
“Hunters must be exceptionally tight individuals,” he continued. “A hunter leaves very little to chance.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Journey to Ixtlan”, 1972; Chapter 6: Becoming a Hunter)

2 warrior:
“You don’t bewitch to make warriors. To be a warrior you have to be crystal clear, like Eligio. There you have a man of courage!”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Separate reality”, 1971; Chapter 4)

3 Florinda Donner-Grau:
Florinda Donner-Grau (formerly Regine Thal) and Taisha Abelar (formerly Maryann Simko) both lived with Carlos Castaneda in a large multi-dwelling property in Los Angeles he bought after 1973. Each went on to write books that explored the experience of being followers of Castaneda’s teachings from a feminist perspective. Around the time Castaneda died in April 1998, his companions Donner-Grau, Abelar and Patricia Partin informed friends they were leaving on a long journey.

Like Castaneda, Taisha Abelar and Florinda Donner-Grau were students of anthropology at UCLA. Each went on to write books that explored the experience of being followers of Castaneda’s teachings from a feminist perspective.

(see Wikipedia)

4 Reni keeps pointing out during the seminar, that Carlos himself would always tell people to go and try everything out for themselves, rather than just listening to him speak.

5 discipline, courage (six elements of warriorship):
“He said that the most effective strategy was worked out by the seers of the Conquest, the unquestionable masters of stalking. It consists of six elements that interplay with one another. Five of them are called the attributes of warriorship: control, discipline, forbearance, timing, and will. They pertain to the world of the warrior who is fighting to lose self-importance. The sixth element, which is perhaps the most important of all, pertains to the outside world and is called the petty tyrant.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “The Fire from Within”, 1984; Chapter 2: Petty tyrants)

6 Reni reads this question as: “Do you like the newer events better now that you’re onstage speaking?”

7 Exercise at the event is almost overwhelmingly shown by facilitators, certified Tensegrity instructors, although I could often (almost always) see Reni in the background mirroring their moves.

8 ego:
“Egomania is a real tyrant,” he said. “We must work ceaselessly to dethrone it.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “The Power of Silence”, 1987; Chapter 6: The Four Moods of Stalking)

9 “Practical Dreaming” and other events:
“Practical Dreaming” is one of a series of interactive workshops, or so it seems. So far there has been a seminar in Berlin in October 2018, and the one in Moscow in May 2019.

Interactive experiences

— Transforming Dreams Into Reality (Berlin, Germany) (October 26—28, 2018): https://castaneda.com/transforming-dreams-into-reality/
— Practical Dreaming (Moscow, Russia) (May 2—5, 2019): https://castaneda.com/practical-dreaming/

 

For a list of events and more information, see my article and calendar of events at “Tensegrity” website.

10 Carol Tiggs:
Carol Tiggs, along with Taisha Abelar and Florinda Donner-Grau, was a students of don Juan Matus and colleague of Castaneda. They wrote memoirs of their experiences and were a part of Castaneda’s inner circle. He insisted that, along with him, they were the only legitimate students of Matus. Since his death, Carol Tiggs, a colleague of Castaneda, has spoken at workshops throughout the world, including at Ontario, California in 1998, Sochi, Russia in 2015 and Merida, Yucatan in 2016. Tiggs had the longest association with Castaneda and is written about in some of his books. Today, she serves as a consultant for Cleargreen.

Castaneda, along with Carol Tiggs, Florinda Donner-Grau and Taisha Abelar, created Cleargreen Incorporated in 1995. The organization’s stated purpose is “carrying out the instruction and publication of Tensegrity”.

(see Wikipedia)

11 Carlos Castaneda bibliography, associated authors, and related works: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Castaneda_bibliography.

12 warrior:
“Worry and think before you make any decision, but once you make it, be on your way free from worries or thoughts; there will be a million other decisions still awaiting you. That’s the warrior’s way.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Journey to Ixtlan”, 1972; Chapter 6: Becoming a Hunter)

13 nostalgia:
“He said that my mood reminded him of a song and began to sing in a low tone; his singing voice was very pleasing and the lyrics carried me away: “I’m so far away from the sky where I was born. Immense nostalgia invades my thoughts. Now that I am so alone and sad like a leaf in the wind, sometimes I want to weep, sometimes I want to laugh with longing.” (Que lejos estoy del cielo donde he nacido. Inmensa nostalgia invade mi pensamiento. Ahora que estoy tan solo y triste cual hoja al viento, quisiera llorar, quisiera reir de sentimiento.)”

(Carlos Castaneda, “The Teachings of Don Juan”, 1968; Chapter 7)

14 dream:
“Then my thoughts were turned on again. They came back in a fast barrage of images — faces, scenery. Scenes without any coherence popped up and disappeared. It was like a fast dream in which images overlap and change.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Journey to Ixtlan”, 1972; Chapter 11: The Mood of a Warrior)

15 Nagual:
“He’s a sorcerer. He entered into your old body and replaced its luminosity. Now you shine like the Nagual himself. You’re not your father’s son anymore. You are the Nagual himself.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “The Second Ring of Power”, 1974; Chapter 1: The Transformation of Dona Soledad)

16 “Maps to the Stars”:
Maps to the Stars” is a 2014 internationally co-produced satirical drama film directed by David Cronenberg, and starring Julianne Moore, Mia Wasikowska, John Cusack, Robert Pattinson, Olivia Williams, Sarah Gadon, and Evan Bird. The screenplay was written by Bruce Wagner, who had written a novel entitled “Dead Stars” based on the “Maps to the Stars” script, after initial plans for making the film with Cronenberg fell through.

(see Wikipedia)

17 showing without explaining:
“From now on,” he said, “you must simply show people whatever you care to show them, but without ever telling exactly how you’ve done it.”

(Carlos Castaneda, “Journey to Ixtlan”, 1972; Chapter 2: Erasing Personal History)