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by Eugene Hernandez
November 16, 2006 5:06 AM
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PARK CITY '07 | Morgen's "Chicago 10" to Open 2007 Sundance Film Festival

The 2007 Sundance Film Festival will open with the world premiere of Brett Morgen's "Chicago 10," a new documentary about the 1968 protests around the Democratic covention in Chicago. This news is the first of a series of announcements coming this month from the Sundance Film Festival, which will announce its full lineup shortly after the Thanksgiving holiday in the U.S. According to Sundance planners, Morgen's film combines historical footage, interviews, animation and music to tell the story and also explore the subsequent Chicago Conspiracy Trial the following year. The 2007 Sundance Film Festival will kick-off on January 18, 2007 and continue through Janury 28 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah.

"We are pleased to open the 2007 Sundance Film Festival with Brett Morgen's "Chicago 10," festival director Geoff Gilmore said in a statement today. "We are particularly excited to be able to present a film that pushes the boundaries of many of the traditional aspects of documentary filmmaking, that speaks to audiences beyond what one might expect and that exemplifies the range of creativity and diversity that we support at the Festival."

The selection will mark the second time that the Sundance Film Festival opens with a documentary. The event debuted with Stacy Peralta's "Riding Giants" in 2004. Gilmore, head programmer John Cooper and the rest of the Sunndance team plan to announce the 2007 Sundance Film Festival competition lineups on November 29 and the balance of the feature roster the following day. The short film lineup for this year's festival is set to be announced on December 6th.

Filmmaker Brett Morgen, pictured in front of images from his new film "Chicago 10." Photo provided by Sundance Institute

Filmmaker Brett Morgen and Nanette Burstein's "The Kid Stays in The Picture" debuted at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, while their "On The Ropes" premiered at the fest in 1999.

In the words of the announcement today, the film "explores the build-up and aftermath of the week-long anti-war demonstrations staged during the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, during which protestors clashed with the Chicago Police Department and the National Guard." The description continues, "The film presents contemporary history through a mix of bold and original animation with extraordinary archival footage that allows the film to move back and forth between the protests on the streets of Chicago and the resulting courtroom chaos. Set to the music of revolution, then and now, 'Chicago 10' is a story of young Americans speaking out and taking a stand in the face of an oppressive and armed government."

"Chicago 10" is from River Road Entertainment and Participant Productions and was produced by Vanity Fair magazine's Graydon Carter and Morgen. The executive producers are William Pohlad, Laura Bickford, Jeff Skoll, Diane Weyermann, Peter Schlessel and Ricky Strauss. Cinetic Media is handling worldwide rights to the film.

"It seems fitting to me that a film about the importance of taking a stand should launch [the festival]," Morgen said in a statement, "For five years I have labored to bring this story into focus and with each passing day, the film becomes increasingly relevant. I can't think of a more appropriate time and place to unleash this beast."

2 Comments

  • filmster2006 | February 1, 2007 9:02 AMReply

    To Riverside County authorities the following information may concern:



    I have reason to believe that Paul Krassner was behind the recent so-called children's school strike against the Iraq War at Desert Hot Springs High School on 1/8 in an effort to generate publicity for a anti-war movie he helped script about the sixties, "Chicago 10", that was shown recently, 1/17-1/27, at the Sundance Film Festival, in an attempt to help acquire a distributor for the film, without which it would be a financial failure, its current status.



    As to the intentions of this well known homosexual, bisexual pervert, where he is coming from and his attitude towards children, you can see from his own words in a piece written by him for the LA Times.



    The Parts Left Out of "Chicago 10" by Paul Krassner

    ...Now we were tripping on LSD as the hurricane reached full force. "Hey," Abbie yelled over the roar, "this is powerful [bleepin'] acid!"...On the afternoon of December 31, several...friends gathered at the Hoffman's Lower East Side apartment, smoking Columbian marijuana and planned for Chicago....PAUL: Did you ever see that movie, "Wild in the Streets? [A thought balloon shows the image of a group of teenagers dumping LSD into the water supply.]...I decided to take a tab of LSD at lunch before testifying...For millions of young people LSD served as ...deprogramming...from mainstream culture...



    The need for brevity affects context in the above, but his encouragement of drug use, etc., remains clear in the full reading of the 1/28 LA Times article. The crass effort by this irresponsible predator to generate publicity for a movie using a school strike disgusts some of us in its misuse of school children for motives of money and profit.



    This note was originally sent to Desert Hot Springs High School teachers and administrators directly touched by the strike with the suggestion that they, as Riverside County residents, might want to contact child abuse authorities for further investigation. The extent to which ordinary people are cowed by celebrity prompts this follow up letter from LA County residents who are perhaps closer to the issue.



    Excuse the anonymity of myself and my contacts, unavoidable given the nature of the film industry. We are already being accused of being anti-Semitic and homophobic in making our information known though a good half of us fall into the above two categories in some manner. The issue transcends name calling and is a matter of a violation of the public trust for reasons of personal profit. It goes one step beyond the outrageous Cartoon Network stunt in Boston in its use of children as the vehicle for publicity and deserves further investigation to insure that such things do not happen again.

  • aspenmom | January 11, 2007 4:54 AMReply

    HI, I look forward to seeing this! I am headed out to Park City, as well as my eco-friendly bags, that were chosen to be one of the Official Swag bags!