The economic and social ramifications of the Great Recession were very much on display in 99 Homes at our all-day The Contenders awards-season event November 7 at the DGA. Kicking off Broad Green Pictures’ portion of the day, director Ramin Bahrani told the packed house about the extensive research and preparation he did on the film about Florida’s housing crisis. Talking about working with stars Andrew Garfield and Michael Shannon, Bahrani also told me how he was surprised no one else was making a feature about the issue that affected so many Americans over the past several years. Click on the video above to watch some of our conversation.

Having had its premiere at the Venice Film Festival last year and playing the likes of Sundance and Toronto before its September 25 release, 99 Homes follows the path of Garfield’s unemployed construction worker Dennis Nash as he, his son and his mother are evicted from their family home by Shannon’s slippery real estate broker Rick Carver. Living in a rundown hotel and desperate to get his home back, Nash soon finds himself working for Carver and being sucked further into his lucrative world and “web of corruption,” as Bahrani describes it. The taut screenplay by Bahrani and Amir Naderi eventually finds Nash evicting families from their homes and risking losing much more than a house in the process.