A Dozen Projects Set for Sundance’s January Script Lab
by Eugene Hernandez
Twelve projects have been selected for the Sundance Institute‘s January Screenwriters Lab, to be held January 14-19, 2005 at Sundance Village in Utah. The five-day lab gives writers a chance to work with established writers to develop projects. Lab advisers this year will include Allison Anders, Guillermo Ariaga, David Benioff, Anthony Drazan, Naomi Foner Gyllenhaal, Nelson George, Todd Graff, Larry Konner, Craig Lucas, Walter Mosley, Frank Pierson, Jeremy Pikser, Tom Rickman, Howard Rodman, Susan Shilliday, Zachary Sklar and David Veloz.
“We are thrilled to be supporting such a diverse and distinctive group of emerging filmmakers. Chosen for their authentic voice and unique talent, each writer is offering a window into their singular perspective on the world we live in,” said Michelle Satter, Director, Sundance Institute Feature Film Program, in a statement. “With this Lab, the program continues its commitment to international artists whose stories and aesthetic ideas are an inspiration to filmmakers here and abroad. We are delighted to feature four international projects from New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and Brazil, and eight North American projects at the lab, providing a rich environment for cultural exchange.”
Seven features from the Institute feature film labs will screen at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival, including Miranda July‘s “Me and You and Everyone We Know,” Ira Sachs‘ “Forty Shades of Blue,” Michael Kang‘s “The Motel,” Doug Sadler‘s “Swimmers,” Sebastian Cordero‘s “Cronicas,” Malgorzata Szumowska‘s “Strangers,” and Gregg Araki‘s “Mysterious Skin.”
The complete list of participants and projects selected for the 2005 January Screenwriters Lab: (information provided by Sundance Institute)
Andrea Arnold (writer/director), England, “The Advance Party”
A woman obsessed with the loss of her family uses her job as a closed-circuit television surveillance operator to confront the man responsible for their death.
Taika Waititi (writer/director), New Zealand, “Choice”
In rural New Zealand, a young Maori boy struggles to find his place among his peers while learning what it means to be a man as he reconnects with his estranged father.
Cruz Angeles (co-writer/director) and Maria Topete (co-writer), U.S.A., “Don’t Let Me Drown”
In a post-September 11th world filled with fear and hate, sometimes the only thing that keeps you from drowning is love.
Dante W. Harper (writer/director), U.S.A., “Dreamland”
A compelling look into the heart and mind of a domestic terrorist, Dreamland is the tragic story of Tim McVeigh, from his days as a boy dreaming of being a soldier to a man at war with his own country.
Tom Gilroy (writer/director), U.S.A., “Location”
Hired as a location scout for an indie film version of Kerouac’s “On The Road,” a middle-aged idealist pretends he’s living a comedy and ignores he’s documenting a tragedy.
Darci Picoult (writer) and Andrew Dosunmu (director), U.S.A., “Mother of George”
Torn between her African culture and new life in America, a woman struggles to please her husband and give him the son that will carry on his family’s legacy.
Adam Bhala Lough (writer/director), U.S.A., “Near As Far”
A surreal, subjective portrait of a troubled teenaged girl who suffers through the death of her best friend and desperately searches for someone to take care of her.
Philippe Barcinski (writer/director), Brazil, “Not By Chance”
Two men obsessed with control are put to the test when they realize they aren’t in command of their loved ones or the circumstances and events of their lives.
Vald Lazar (writer/director), U.S.A., “Pieta”
Born of a holy war, a child has but one choice