David Lynch hasn’t released a feature film since 2006’s Inland Empire, a characteristically baffling movie that was only seen by Lynch enthusiasts, critics, and Laura Dern completists (which, honestly, should be every human living under the sun). But despite his absence from theaters, it’s not like he’s been sitting at home, twiddling his thumbs and waiting for a chance to bring back Twin Peaks. Over the past decade, he’s kept himself busy with all sorts of insane short films, music videos, business ideas, acting gigs, and other zaniness that only America’s most unpredictable auteur can get away with. Here’s the weirdest stuff he’s been up to.
In the mid-2000s, Lynch took to posting daily weather reports both on his own website and later on his Twitter page. The videos were mostly straightforward observations about the weather in Los Angeles, but this being Lynch, they also featured guest stars like Laura Dern. Sometimes, he would just be reading a copy of Maxim. You know, just like Al Roker.
David Lynch Coffee
You might not know this, but Lynch used to have his own brand of coffee. Naturally, he also made an ad for it. The result? Lynch talking to a Barbie-doll head that he squishes in his hands for four minutes.
A Dior commercial
Lynch doesn’t just make commercials for his own products. In 2010, he made a 15-minute short film for Dior that follows Marion Cotillard through an especially strange visit to a Shanghai hotel. Two mysterious men speak to her in Chinese and she answers back in English. The creepy men open tiny doors for her in maroon rooms. It’s very Twin Peaks.
A (very) short film about a dream
Lynch contributed to a 2010 compilation called 42 One Dream Rush, in which directors made short films inspired by their dreams. His is 42 seconds long, and it is creepy as hell.
In 2009, Lynch and his son Austin started the Interview Project, in which they would interview normal people that they happened upon in everyday circumstances. It won a Webby in 2010 for best online video series.
Plenty of TV shows try to be Lynchian, but few accomplish it as often or as well as Louie. Lynch starred in two episodes of the show’s third season as Jack Dahl, a man who tries to whip Louis C.K. into shape so that he can take over as host of The Tonight Show.
The Cleveland Show
In 2010, Lynch started making appearances on Fox’s The Cleveland Show. He plays the part of Gus, the 117-year-old owner of the Broken Stool, a bar where Cleveland and his friends hang out. (Gus later showed up in an episode of Family Guy too.)
A collaboration with Interpol at Coachella
Lynch made an animated video for Interpol to play onstage when they performed at Coachella in 2011. Called I Touch a Red Button Man, the five-minute video was set to the band’s song “Lights” and featured a fat man with a pointy nose on a background that looks like television static trying to push a red button. The man looks a bit like the creature wearing a pointy nose mask in Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me.
The 3 Rs
Think a one-minute short film can’t give you nightmares? Just watch The 3 Rs, which Lynch made as a trailer for the 2011 Venice Film Festival.
A music video for Nine Inch Nails
Lynch directed the 2013 video for “Came Back Haunted,” which features black-and-white clips of hearts beating, shaky camera work, Trent Reznor’s face bathed in red light, and so much strobe effect that there is a warning from Epilepsy Action on the video’s YouTube page. Seriously.
Crazy Clown Time
I have no idea what the hell this is.