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Joe Frank Somewhere Out There


JOE FRANK - SOMEWHERE OUT THERE is a feature length film that explores the life of award-winning audio artist  Joe Frank whose career on radio and on-line has spanned four decades.  Frank's highly produced radio shows can be described as innovative, abstract, underground, autobiographical, surreal, funny, disturbing, and thought provoking meditations on the human condition.

The film features dozens of rare interviews with Joe's friends, actors, engineers and closest associates.  The doc weaves the stories together with a wide variety of Joe's radio shows to reveal his art, creative process, and personal life.

The film stars Joe Frank, Harry Shearer, Ira Glass, David Cross, Grace Zabriskie, Alexander Payne, Larry Block, Debi Mae West, Ryan Cutrona, Laura Esterman, Tim Jerome, Larry Josephson, Terry Kinney, Arthur Miller, David  Rapkin, and Lester Nafzger among others.

the film
The facts
Joe Frank Somewhere Out There


Joe Frank began his career in 1976 at WBAI, in New York City.  In his Saturday night show, In the Dark, he experimented with live free form radio featuring his monologues and actor improvisations.  It was during this period that Joe’s bizarre and original vision  quickly drew increasingly larger audiences.


In 1978,  Joe was hired to co-anchor Weekend All Things Considered on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered.  But a life in journalism soon lost its appeal, and Joe returned to producing radio shows for NPR Playhouse.  Over the course of the next three decades Joe produced over two hundred radio programs for KCRW, Santa Monica, and NPR.

Throughout his career, Joe has been honored with many major industry awards, including the George Foster Peabody Award, and an Emmy.  Over the years Joe’s distinctive approach to making radio has inspired producers around the country to experiment with and stretch the medium beyond traditional boundaries.


Joe recently performed live before full houses in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. He has also created new shows for KCRW’s radio series, Unfictional.  Sadly, Joe passed away in January, 2018.  More info  at

The mission


D.P. Carlson is the Producer, Director and Editor of  JOE FRANK - SOMEWHERE OUT THERE.  He became a fan and follower of Joe Frank's radio shows listening to WBEZ Chicago in 1988. 


Carlson is the CEO of Film Foetus, Inc., a Chicago based independent film company.  His early independent work as a producer/director includes a feature doc about the Chicago Blues scene, and several short films with legendary WORD JAZZ artist Ken Nordine. 


In 1998 D.P. Carlson created the critically acclaimed CHICAGO FILMMAKERS ON THE CHICAGO RIVER, and in 1999 received the Panavision sponsored Founders Award given to the Most Promising Midwest Filmmaker.  In 2001, the Gene Siskel Film Center presented a retrospective of his early work for the Starring Chicago film series. 


Since then, he made the rockumentary THE BEARS - OUT OF HIBERNATION featuring world renowned guitarist Adrian Belew, and PAUL STANLEY - LIVE TO DREAM.  D.P. Carlson's films have been screened on television, film festivals and art houses nationwide.

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