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Sundance Film Festival

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    Gun Hill Road

    I am finally catching up with some of what I missed at Sundance -- just in time for Cannes!. This one I had heard about from a acting school colleague of Rashaad before Sundance was announced. Now I have finally seen the film! Wow! It is so strong and uncompromising, I actually had a tough time staying with these characters, so strongly into their own world were they. The realism of their characters, flaws and strengths, the realism of those rough South Bronx streets, the grittiness and proximity were palpable. This film will remain with me for a long time to come. Esai Morales and Judy Reyes were great. And the young man...who is he?...

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    Black Power Mixedtapes Hosted by The Economist in Sundance is Acquired by Wide for Berlin

    Wide Management had added Black Power Mixtapes: 1967 - 1975 directed by Swedish Göran Hugo Olsson starring Danny Glover, Talib Kwali, Erykah Badu and Harry Belafonte to its impressive documentary section of films, From 1967 to 1975, fueled by curiosity and naïveté, Swedish journalists traversed the...

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    International Sales Agent of the Day: Coach 14

    Andrew MacLean's On the IcePape Boye and Jaume Domenech of Paris based Coach 14 picked up 2 films in Sundance: Terri which ATO had acquired for U.S. in Toronto, and just after Sundance, they picked up what won the Berlinale's Best First Picture Award, On The Ice, a beautifully told story taking place in the isolated, frozen town of Barrow, Alaska about two Iñupiaq teenagers ('Skimos' as they call themselves) who have grown up like brothers in a tight-knit community defined as much by ancient traditions as by hip-hop and snowmobiles and who are caught up in an accidental murder of a third friend while on a seal hunt. Panic stricken, terrifie...

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    Whitewater Films' On the Ice in Sundance and Berlin

    One of my favorite films at Sundance was On the Ice which was picked up for international sales by Coach 14 just after Sundance and will show in Berlin's EFM (showtimes to be confirmed). My previous post on the film contained a number of errors and so I hope the reader will forgive me for reposting...

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    Sundance By Numbers #3 (Final Tally)

    THE NUMBERS OF SALES AND ACQUISITIONS:39 titles were sold. See Anthony Kaufman's article on IndieWIRE which did not count the latest acquisition of ON THE ICE for which Coach 14 picked up international representation..$30m in deals and P&A commitments is reportedly the level of business done. Jonathan Dana says on February 1, 2011As ever, keep in mind that all eventual deals do not necessarily get done at Sundance, and that many of the “unsold” films will find proper homes and ultimate success. The notion that a film must be sold quickly to be deemed ‘valuable’ is in itself a longstanding myth, or at least an oversimplification of a process ...

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    Countdown to the Oscars: Biutiful

    Surprising in many ways, Biutiful is nominated for two Oscars. Not only is it one of the 5 nominees in the Best Foreign Language category (Mexico), Javier Bardem is also nominated in the Best Actor category. It played in Cannes last spring, where it won a Best Actor prize for Javier Bardem. Roadside Attractions distributing in the U.S. After its December 1 week qualifying run, it is the very first film to debut theatrically after screening at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival. Playing opposite Kaboom, the weekend’s other major specialty debut, it had a strong opening likely in large part to its somewhat surprising best actor nomination. On...

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    International Sales Agent Wide at Sundance, Rotterdam and Berlin

    Wide is proud that its new acquisition, The Mill and the Cross by Lech Majewski, is having its World Premiere at Sundance and its European Premiere at Rotterdam. The Director Lech Majewski changes the way art is portrayed on film, pioneering a new method to “enter” a painting and to create a narrative based on its depicted figures, performed by live actors. In post-production, Majewski painstakingly layered various elements: for example, he added an actor shot in front of a blue screen to several layers of both painted backdrops and location footage, enhanced by digital footage of a majestic sky shot in New Zealand. This process allowed the ...

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    International Sales Agent of the Day: Ondamax

    Ondamax is one of the busiest and most energetic of international sales agents and production companies. Founded in 2007, the company has made a name for itself as a specialized “cinema boutique”, working essentially with films from or about Latin Americans and U.S. Latinos. Based in Florida, founder Eric Mathis and his team are always seeking new ways to promote and distribute their collection of films. Their first 25 titles reached 550 selections and won 105 awards in festivals including Cannes, Sundance, Toronto, Venice and San Sebastian. During last AFM they announced several new initiatives which will be actively in place by the time Be...

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    AFFRM: A New View of Distribution

    On Sunday, January 25, 2011, AFFRM hosted the third of a trio of dinners for black filmmakers and filmthinkers at Sundance Film Festival. Filmmaker and publicist Ava DuVernay created these dynamic group conversations on "all things black + indie + film" at Cafe Terigo, overlooking Main Street in Park City. I like to think of myself as a filmthinker because I have been rethinking distribution of films along with everyone else in the business, but have been especially concerned about underserved audiences in the Latino and African American sectors. I have been reframing my own ideas (with such a coach as Tom Bernard leading the way) as I teach...

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    Africa in Sundance: An African Election and Kinyarwanda

    Two films in Sundance show Africa from the inside which is rare in these days when we are seeing events unfold in Africa from a Western point of view in the Sudan and the Ivory Coast. An African Election, directed by Jarreth Merz and playing in the World Cinema Documentary Competition after its IDFA premiere is a political documentary that exposes the never-before-seen, nitty-gritty of political electioneering in Africa.It captures the intrigues of political campaigns; the almost carnival like atmosphere that is laced with fear of the unknown and the danger that lurks behind-the-scenes. As the opponents face off in this 2008 election in Ghan...

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