Hit & Misses: The 2022 Releases of Six Recent Sundance Features

A masked Alexei Navalny waves as he boards a plane while passengers take photos and videos of him.Navalny, courtesy of CNN Films

In just three (admittedly, very momentous) years, the marketplace for independent films has completely changed. During previous turning points over the decades, executives would use words like “waves” or “cycles” to describe instances of upheaval, but what’s happening now is…  Read more

By Dec 15, 2022

Beyond the Third Act: Everest Pipkin’s Cinema-Inspired Tabletop RPG World Ending Game

Prompts for Everest Pipkin's tabletop RPG World Ending GameCourtesy of Everest Pipkin

“Endings are very hard,” said Everest Pipkin. “It’s one of the most difficult things about making anything, and only gets harder when you are collaboratively telling a story with lots of people.” Speaking via video chat from their home in…  Read more

By Dec 15, 2022

Daydreaming, Neuroscience and Screenwriting: The Imaginative Teaching of Mary Sweeney

An abstract, blue-tinted figure is superimposed over a chair and positioned next to faint candlelight.Mary Sweeney's Waking Dream (2019)

“I have always had a hard time explaining my creative process to people,” says Mary Sweeney, a professor of screenwriting in the John Wells Division of Writing for Screen & Television at the School of Cinematic Arts at the University…  Read more

By Dec 15, 2022

Engineers, Artists, Both? Joanne McNeil on Bell Lab’s Pioneering Ken Knowlton

Lillian Schwartz's PixillationLillian Schwartz's Pixillation (from the Collections of the Henry Ford)

“Animated movies are usually made by a slow and complex process involving the coordinated efforts of many artists, draftsmen, photographers and other specialists,” begins a curious instructional film Bell Telephone Laboratories Inc. released in 1964. After asserting that with an…  Read more

By Oct 11, 2022

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