[PREMIERE SCREENING: Monday, Jan. 19, 5:30 pm — Library Center Theatre, Park City] While attending Sundance with my two short films, Populi and Pan with Us, I found myself bored with the majority of low-budget independent feature films, particularly their third acts. I didn’t know what specifically caused the redundant patterns in the scripts but I expected more originality from things that carry the qualifier “independent.” Never having given any thought to making feature films before (or narrative works of any kind for that matter), I came home with a bug up my butt and wrote something that I hoped […]
[PREMIERE SCREENING: Monday, Jan. 19, 5:15 pm — Racquet Club, Park City] It’s very hard to begin creating a story with a defined set of rules. It has to come from the gut and has to be truthful. David Brind, the writer of Dare, and I set out to tell a story within the format of a full-length film. It started out as a 15-minute, first-year film-school project that left us with a distinct “What happens next?” feeling. We’ve spent the last four years turning it into a feature. Dare is a story about the need to take chances when […]
Greg Mottola’s Adventureland screened in the Premieres section of this year’s Sundance Film Festival. You can read our story on the film in the Winter issue section.
[PREMIERE SCREENING: Sunday, Jan. 18, 8:30 pm — Library Center Theatre, Park City] The whole point of independent filmmaking, in my mind, is to do something original, something challenging, and not to try and cater to whatever the whims of the current marketplace may be. If one is fortunate enough to be given an opportunity to make a film, I think the goal should be, “How can I make the best movie possible?” not “What do I think will sell in today’s marketplace?” So I did my best not to worry about anything other than making a good film and […]
Unlike other films playing in our three-part look at crossover artists at Sundance, The Cove is not playing in New Frontier, but in the Documentary Competition, and that’s despite its director’s non-traditional background. Louie Psihoyos was one of the world’s top-ranked photographers, a staff member at National Geographic who had traveled the world taking portraits of the world’s most famous people and abstract concepts (you try photographing “science.”) He was also an avid diver who witnessed year by year the physical destruction of the world’s oceans. He and his friend Jim Clarke, founder of Netscape and WebMD, decided to form […]
James Toback’s Tyson screened in the Premieres section of this year’s Sundance Film Festival. You can read our story on the film in the Winter issue section.
California-based artist Charlie White has made his mark with highly produced, carefully-staged photographs that construct scenes both disturbing and familiar, work that aims to dissect the violence, desires, and social anxieties that trouble the American collective unconscious. From his Understanding Joshua Series (2001), which offered an adorable/repulsive monster character as surrogate for human fragility and the internal demons that haunt our experiences of self, to the more varied And Jeopardize the Integrity of the Hull series that, among other uncanny images, offered The Persuaders, a flat Sesame Street-like image of puppets taunting their tormented human host in front of a […]
Mike Plante wrote about the DVD release of Chameleon Street in our Load & Play section in 2007. The film will screen at this year’s Sundance Film Festival in its Sundance Collection section. In Chameleon Street, the enigmatic Doug Street goes through a series of cons, sometimes to make money, sometimes to prove he can do more than what the world expects of him. In short time he goes from a simple extortion plot to complex impersonations, including as a reporter from Time, a Yale student, a lawyer and even a surgeon. Yes, a surgeon – who performed 36 successful […]
You Wont Miss Me is Ry Russo-Young’s second feature, and her first in Sundance. Orphans, which premiered at SXSW last year, was a Bergman-esque tale of two sisters, now separated, who come together in their parents’ sprawling, snow-bound house to hack emotional pieces out of one another. You Wont Miss Me is very different in style and tone. It uses experimental film techniques – disjointed narrative, a salad of film and video formats – to paint a portrait of one desperate, uncensored, sexy wreck of a young woman named Shelly Brown. Russo-Young invented the character with the film’s star, Stella […]
Glenn McQuaid’s I Sell The Dead, starring Dominic Monaghan and Ron Perlman, will open Slamdance this year. Taglined “Never Trust a Corpse,” it’s a vintage-inspired horror-comedy set in the 18th or 19th-century, structured as a series of drunken recollections on the life of a career grave robber (Monaghan.) The film is produced by and co-stars horror-master Larry Fessenden (Wendigo, The Last Winter, Habit) of the New York production outfit Glass Eye Pix. The team behind ISTD – McQuaid, Fessenden and Scareflix producer Peter Phok — sat down with Filmmaker on the eve of their trip to Park City to reminisce […]