HATCH Alum Michael Keaton nominated for Best Actor; wins Best Picture for “Birdman”
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HATCH Alum Michael Keaton nominated for Best Actor; wins Best Picture for “Birdman”

Bill Pullman, Michael Keaton and Peter Fonda talking about the craft of acting at HATCH 04

“…you’re really conscious and at the same time not conscious at all. You kind of let it drift off and float off. It’s kind of a tricky thing. I think that’s why it attracts creative people. They’ve got the right brain and left brain thing kind of merging, I think.”

That was Michael Keaton talking about fly fishing from his ranch in Montana in a 2014 Midcurrent interview; but it could just have easily been an analysis of how HATCH simultaneously inspires abstract creativity and very tangible solutions for some of our generation’s most pressing challenges

Michael Keaton is an early HATCH alum, having participated in the first year of the experience in 2004.  In the decade since, he’s opted for what some members of the media have referred to as a “retreat”; emerging in October 2014 with the release of Birdman one of the most eagerly anticipated films of the year.  In February of this year, Birdman earned Keaton a Best Actor nomination and secured Best Picture at the 87th Academy Awards, along with tremendous critical and mainstream acclaim.

There’s a reason HATCH  takes place almost completely off-grid, surrounded by high peaks and rolling streams in the heart of Big Sky Country. It’s because this setting allows participants to intermittently “drift off and float off” into the big picture of a challenge, and then fully connect with innovative problem-solving.  No emails, phone calls, or social media posting/voyeurism to interrupt. Just disconnecting to reconnect.

There are also a lot of reasons a brilliant creative mind like Michael Keaton would be attracted to HATCH, and even more reasons why that creative mind would leave HATCH inspired and enriched.  Certainly not every HATCHer will go on to win an Academy Award for a powerful and nuanced film performance.  But, the vast majority will leave HATCH with a better understanding of the power of retreat; the power of truly connecting with other amazingly beautiful minds; the power of full immersion in a moment and an experience.

Michael Keaton’s superpower seems to be the ability to balance the power of his creative abilities with a prescient understanding of how best to apply them.  We all have these superpowers; it’s just a matter of tapping into them.  So, cheers to all the superpowers and creative solutions that will be released during HATCH 2015 – and cheers to HATCH alumni like Michael Keaton who are making our world a brighter and more inspired place.