By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood January 19, 2011 at 12:46AM
With so many movies going into Sundance without distribution, many of them docs, getting them seen by the right people is tough. Cindy Meehl's Buck has the advantage of being the behind-the-scenes true story of the man behind Nick Evan's novel and the film made from it by Sundance's own Robert Redford, the producer-director-star of The Horse Whisperer (1998). Our exclusive first look at the poster and trailer is below.
According to Meehl, she was inspired to make her first movie after she met charismatic horse world legend Buck Brannaman, who believes in training horses with gentleness, at one of his clinics eight years ago:
In four days, he taught me more about horses than anyone ever had in all the decades I’d been dealing with them. Even more compelling was watching how he could instill the feeling of power in someone when they were afraid and had given up hope, whether it was about their horse or their life. Buck’s personal story, as I came to know it, also deeply resonated with me. How he rose above the violence of his childhood, and applied the hard-learned lessons to training horses humanely and respectfully was profoundly inspirational. Buck has a unique ability to help people reconfigure the way they perceive both horses and humans, and the principles he teaches can become life altering. How he treats and works with these animals reverberates beyond the round pen and the arena. Overcoming a horse’s fear and earning its trust has a lot in common with raising a child or sustaining a relationship.