Tomas Koolhaas remembers when his father, architect Rem Koolhaas, was laying the groundwork for his firm Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) in their London apartment. As a youngster, Tomas was allowed to doodle on the office drafting boards and shovel alongside construction workers. Both parties branched out: OMA became a ubiquitous international architecture firm, and Tomas pursued his interest in media and film. Now, after 10 years in cinema, Tomas, 33, is returning to his roots. For the past two years, the Santa Monica–based filmmaker has been piecing together REM, a feature-length documentary about his father, his father’s buildings, and—most importantly—the people around them. With a grant, a successful Kickstarter campaign, and only two more shoots to go, Tomas hopes to have the final version ready next year. RECORD caught up with Koolhaas the Younger.
Why was this the right moment to make this film?
I think this was a really good time to make a film about Rem; he is working in a lot of different cultures and conditions and doing projects now that are unlike what he has done before. The film’s been something that has been coming together in my mind for a long time. I have, of course, been exposed to Rem’s buildings since I was a kid.