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The 2022 Sundance Question: What Aspect of Your Filmmaking Did You Have to Reinvent?

Photo: Kelsey Doyle

Each year Filmmaker asks all the incoming feature directors at Sundance one question. (To see past years’ questions and responses, click here.)

This year’s question:

The last two years have prompted much contemplation and reconsideration of the reasons why we make our films as well as the ways in which we make them. What aspect of your filmmaking—whether in your creative process, the way you finance your films, your production methodology or the way you relate to your audience—did you have to reinvent in order to make and complete the film you are bringing to the festival this year?

“Jumping and Hugging When a Scene Suddenly Works Amazingly Is Always Much More Fun in the Same Room” | Alon Schwarz, Tantura

“It Was Really Important That I Was Able to Lean Into the Intimacy of Interviewing My Subjects and Not Just Rely on Archival Footage” | Eva Longoria Bastón, La Guerra Civil

“The Pandemic Sparked a Deeper Contemplation Into Our Creative Process” | Sara Dosa, Fire of Love

“Acting as Though Something Will Happen Can Take One Darn Close to Doing It” | Max Walker-Silverman, A Love Song

“Getting the Opportunity to Work on a Feature Brought Me Back From the Dead” | Mimi Cave, FRESH

“We Started to Realize That Our Film Connects to the Current Moment in a Powerful and Urgent Way” | Julie Ha & Eugene Yi, Free Chol Soo Lee

“This Was the First Film I’ve Ever Made Where Every Day of Shooting Started With Dread” | Oliver Hermanus, Living

“The Pandemic Just Exaggerates All the Issues You Already Face in Production to an Almost Comedic Level” | Chloe Okuno, Watcher

“Consideration of Our Own Mortality Provides Our Work With Urgency and Focus” | Phyllis Nagy, Call Jane

“The Experimental Works I Was Already Creating Had Huge Potential to Invent a New Form of Immersive Global Filmmaking” | Joe Hunting, We Met in Virtual Reality

“There’s Nothing Like Being in a Room Together and Bringing a Project to Life” | Ben Klein & Violet Columbus, The Exiles

“So Much Is About Responding in the Moment and Not Living in an Idealized Reality” | Mariama Diallo, Master

“We Can’t Afford to Waste Half of the Talent in Our Industry” | Hanna Bergholm on Hatching

“I Thought About How Crucial It Is to Try to Extract Meaning From the Visible and Invisible Historical Layers of a City” | Sierra Pettengill, RIOTSVILLE, USA

“Find the Story Only You Can Tell and Make It on the Scale You Can Make It” | Lena Dunham, Sharp Stick

“This Film Feels Like My Life’s Work Until Now” | Margaret Brown, Descendant

“The Visual Language of Cinema was Connected to Both Sexual Assault and Employment Discrimination” | Nina Menkes, Brainwashed: Sex-Camera-Power

“In That Lack of Motion I Found a New Way of Working” | Sophie Hyde, Good Luck to You, Leo Grande

“The Reason I Make Films Has Been Reinforced by the Pandemic” | Alejandro Loayza Grisi, Utama

“Perhaps It’s a Miracle to Make Films” | Ricky D’Ambrose, The Cathedral

“COVID Helped Us Discover a New Way to Create This Film” | Alex Pritz, The Territory

“Perhaps We Were Swayed Into Making Something a Little More Joyous” | Jim Archer, Brian and Charles

“I’ve Realized How Much More Creative I Am When I Allow Myself Rest” | Adamma Ebo, Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul

“Life Has More Meaning Creating With People That You Love” | Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead, Something in the Dirt

“The Universality of the Cartoon Form” | Jono McLeod, My Old School

“I Was Never Going to Compromise on the Intimacy” | Rita Baghdadi, Sirens

If They Are Not Progressive Leaders in What They Gate-Keep, Green Light and Support, Then They Fall Short” | Saul Williams & Anisia Uzeyman, Neptune Frost

“It Definitely Makes You Ask Yourself Why You’re Making a Movie” | Cooper Raiff, Cha Cha Real Smooth

“I Really Experienced the Idea That None of This Is Guaranteed” | Julian Higgins, God’s Country

“We Viewed Every Opportunity to Film in Person as a Fleeting Gift” | Paula Eiselt, Aftershock

“The Pandemic Only Brought Us Together” | Krystin Ver Linden, Alice

“Just Being Able to Meet Your Subjects Is a Luxury” | Simon Lereng Wilmont, A House Made of Splinters

“The Front Lines of Filming During COVID” | Tig Notaro & Stephanie Allynne, Am I Ok?

“This Film Had to Be Made by the Constant Act of Sharing” | Juan Pablo González, Dos Estaciones

Check back daily during the festival — new answers are uploaded each day throughout the festival.

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