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Sundance 2009

  • Brian Brooks
    1 of 38

    "Precious" Then and Now

    Flashback to Sundance '09: Lee Daniels and actress Gabourey Sidibe were all smiles last year after the film won the Best Dramatic prize at the awards ceremony, closing out the Sundance Film Festival. The film was originally called "Push," but it was re-named "Precious Based on the Novel 'Push' by Sapphire" ahead of its release via Lionsgate which picked up the film at the fest. The film has gone on to garner big box office cash and some awards buzz, but it will be remain to be seen whether it ends up with multiple Oscar nods.
  • Brian Brooks
    2 of 38

    Gordon-Levitt and the Obama on His Back

    Actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt took to the stage at the Sundance awards, giving "Push" the Audience Prize for best U.S. dramatic film, giving Lee Daniels a massive bear hug when he got to the stage. He's pictured here mingling with the crowd with Obama T-shirt (apparently he got in on the street in NYC) at the official after-party.
  • Brian Brooks
    3 of 38

    Jane Lynch Takes the Stage

    Comedienne Jane Lynch served as the M.C. Saturday night in Park City for the awards, opening with a hilarious monologue on same sex marriage utilizing the titles from the festival's '09 line up - funny stuff, but you probably had to be there.
  • Brian Brooks
    4 of 38

    Havana in Park City

    Havana Marking (right) won the World Cinema Audience Award, Documentary and the Excellence in Directing, World Documentary for her film, "Afghan Star" and celebrated with BritDoc's Jess Search (middle) and the film's editor, Ash Jenkins at the after-party. The doc takes a look at the Afghan version of "Pop Idol" ("American Idol") in the war-torn country where most Pop Culture was once banned under Taliban rule.
  • Brian Brooks
    5 of 38

    Longinotto and the "Aunties"

    Director Kim Longinotto and two of the subjects in her doc, "Rough Aunties" were completely giddy after winning Sundance's World Cinema Jury Prize, Documentary. The South Africa-set film spotlights a group of women based in Durban who counsel sexually abused children and work to bring their assailants to justice.
  • Brian Brooks
    6 of 38

    Gabourey and Lee Descend from the Stage

    Gabourey Sidibe gets a charming lead off stage from director Lee Daniels after Sidibe accepted an acting award on behalf of her co-star, Mo'Nique who plays her crazy bitch mother in the film, "Push: Based on the Novel by Sapphire." The film had a good night at the awards night in Park City. Actress Virginia Madsen (far right) presented the prize.
  • Brian Brooks
    7 of 38

    Best Director!

    An award for best director at Sundance and one of Variety's 10 directors to watch, "Sin Nombre" director Cary Joji Fukunaga had a pretty damn good Sundance this year... We ran into Fukunaga at the awards after party for this snap.
  • Brian Brooks
    8 of 38

    "The Reporter" at the Awards

    Though it didn't get a shout out at the Sundance awards last night, director Eric Daniel Metzgar's doc "The Reporter" was definitely one of our favorites (plus he's kinda hot).
  • Brian Brooks
    9 of 38

    Lee and Geoff at Awards

    "Push" director Lee Daniels and Sundance Film Festival director Geoff Gilmore shared a little quality time as the Racquet Club in Park City prior to the festival's awards ceremony Saturday evening. Daniels' "Push" went on to win both the Audience and Jury prize for best dramatic film.
  • Brian Brooks
    10 of 38

    The Glass House Dinner

    Sundance Channel hosted a lovely little dinner for World doc competition film "The Glass House" earlier in the week. Sundance Film Festival director Geoff Gilmore (right) joined the director, Hamid Rahmanian (second from right) Laura Michalchyshyn from Sundance Channel, producer Melissa Hibbard, the film's composer, David Bergeaud Lynne Kirby, SVP Original Production Sundance Channel (2nd from left).
  • Brian Brooks
    11 of 38

    "Nollywood Babylon"

    The gang from "Nollywood Babylon" joined the crowd at the Sundance Channel party on Main Street. Their film spotlights the exploding film industry in Nigeria. Lancelot Oduwa Imasuen (right) is one of the most influential men in the country's movie biz. Joining him are Ben Addelman (middle) and Samir Mallal, the doc's co-directors.
  • Brian Brooks
    12 of 38

    "Line" at HBO

    Director Rupert Murray and producer George Duffield hanging out at the HBO dinner in Park City. Their world cinema competition film, "The End of the Line" sounds a frightening alarm that if the world continues to consume fish at the current rate, the planet will run our of seafood by 2048.
  • Brian Brooks
    13 of 38

    Swanberg and Weixler

    "Hannah Takes the Stairs" director Joe Swanberg and actress Jess Weixler give each other a bear hug in Park City. Swanberg's latest film, "Alexander the Last," which stars Weixler, will debut in March at the SXSW Film Festival and simultaneously on VOD via IFC. Swanberg joined a press conference announcing the film's roll out earlier in the week in Park City.
  • Brian Brooks
    14 of 38

    Burma VJ at the Holiday

    "Burma VJ" director Anders Ostergaard and producer Lise Lense-Moller outside the Holiday theaters following a screening of their film. A big hit in '08 at IDFA and the Copenhagen Film Festivals, the film is a compilation of footage smuggled out of Burma by democratic activists who bring images of repression to the world from the closed state.
  • Brian Brooks
    15 of 38

    Sloss and Sehring

    Cinetic Media head John Sloss (right) with IFC Entertainment president Jonathan Sehring at the Cinetic party in Sundance. The party was probably the funnest one we went to this year (so far). Great music and lots of people danced (after some free cocktails). We attacked Sehring with the camera a lot that day after their press conference last weekend announcing a simultaneous premiere on cable of five films along with their debut screenings at the SXSW Film Festival in March.
  • Brian Brooks
    16 of 38

    Stuart and Sarah at Cinetic

    Don't they just make the cutest couple? Too bad one of them isn't straight. But oh well, they still looked glam at the Cinetic party Monday night. Cinetic's Stuart Wrede and HBO's Sarah Bernstein hit the dance floor and had a good ole time.
  • Brian Brooks
    17 of 38

    Minnie Belts it Out

    Minnie Driver put on quite a show at the party for "Motherhood," by Katherine Diekmann this week at Sundance. The girl can sing! At one point she stopped the show for a moment to tell people fiddling with their Blackberrys and those "doing deals" to go to the back of the room though, which got a good laugh. Driver stars in the film along with Uma Thurman and even Jodie Foster who makes a small cameo. Both Thurman and Foster joined the party, so it was a real starry night.
  • Brian Brooks
    18 of 38

    The Berneys at Cinetic

    Former Picturehouse head Bob Berney and former Film Society of Lincoln Center publicist Jeanne Berney were among the throngs of industry hanging out at the Cinetic party earlier in the week at Zoom on Main Street. Bob Berney is rumored to be starting a new company and we can't wait to hear all about it!
  • Brian Brooks
    19 of 38

    "The Dude" and the Dance

    Jeff Dowd ("The Dude") busted a move at the Cinetic party earlier this week at Sundance. Jeff is known as the person who inspired the Coens' "Dude" in "The Big Lebowski." This year, he notched up his fame by getting punched by an irate Variety reporter at a diner when Dude wouldn't leave him alone about "Dirt," a movie he's representing. (Dowd is also a producers rep). We wrote about it of course, then it got picked up by Defamer, and all the blogs went wild over it, and by afternoon, The Los Angeles Times even picked up the story. Moral of the story? Get into a fight with the right people and you too will make the big time! [Earlier in this post iW mistakenly said that a review of "Dirt" had been posted which it hadn't, we regret the error.]
  • Brian Brooks
    20 of 38

    "Dirt" at Sundance

    "Dirt! The Movie" co-directors Eugene Rosow, Bill Benenson along with Dirt: The Ecstatic Skin of the Earth author William Bryant Logan at the Indie Go Go/Snag Films cocktail party earlier in the week off Main St in Park City. "Dirt" is screening in the Sundance doc competition and spotlights - well, dirt.
  • Peter Knegt
    21 of 38

    Uma and Katherine's "Motherhood"

    "It's rare to find material like this," Uma Thurman (right) said of director Katherine Dieckmann (left) and her script for "Motherhood," premiering tonight at the Sundance Film Festival. "One thing I've been pretty good at is feeling good writing. I have a good eye for that and my favorite thing is to find writing about our experience now as people. Contemporary material that is looking at our lives today. That's my favorite, if you can call it, genre. And finding contemporary, humorous but dramatic writing that is fresh and open-eyed in the moment is very difficult."
  • Peter Knegt
    22 of 38

    Neeson, Nesbitt and Hirschbiegel Celebrate "Heaven"

    "Five Minutes of Heaven" stars Liam Neeson and James Nesbitt (lower right), director Oliver Hirschbiegel and an unidentified guest on Main Street in Park City Tuesday afternoon. "I've never had a film open at a festival," Hirschbiegel told indieWIRE. "And this place is great. I love Sundance... The screening yesterday went so well. The audience was brilliant and in the Q&A there were very smart questions. And everyone applauded us! Which is wonderful."
  • Brian Brooks
    23 of 38

    A Pause for "Sin Nombre"

    After the big screening then the dinner with some press and all the posing etc., the "Sin Nombre" stars took a bit of a time out before dessert to have a chat. Left to right: Paulina Gaitan, Diana Garcia, Edgar Flores and Tenoche Huerta Mejia.
  • Brian Brooks
    24 of 38

    Sin Nombre in Sundance

    Cari Joji Fukunaga's U.S. dramatic competition film "Sin Nombre" received a standing ovation following its premiere screening at the giant Eccles theater in Park City. Immediately following, Focus Features, which will distribute the film, hosted a dinner for the film's cast and Fukunaga (third from left) and producer Amy Kaufman (second from left). Joining them are Focus' Andrew Karpen (left), actress Paulina Gaitan, James Schamus (middle), and actors Diana Garcia, Edgar Flores and Tenoche Huerta Mejia.
  • Brian Brooks
    25 of 38

    Soderbergh and Jenkins in Park City

    "Che" director Steven Soderbergh and "Medicine for Melancholy" director Barry Jenkins have a chat following the slew of announcements made this morning in Park City. IFC is releasing both filmmakers' current films.
  • Brian Brooks
  • Peter Knegt
    27 of 38

    Oh, Canada!

    Canadian filmmakers from Sundance and Slamdance gathered at Coda on Main Street last night for Telefilm Canada's celebration of Canadian film in Park City. Pictured outside the event (from left) are "Victoria Day"'s David Bezmozgis, "Only"'s Ingrid Veninger, "Before Tomorrow"'s Marie-Helene Cousineau, "Second Sight"'s Alison McAlphine, "City Girls"' Jon Rafman, "Cattle Call"'s Mike Maryniuk, "Prom Night In Mississippi"'s Paul Saltzman, and "Cattle Call"s Matthew Rankin.
  • Peter Knegt
    28 of 38

    "Cold Souls" On Main Street

    "Cold Souls" producer/cinematographer Andrij Parekh, star Paul Giamatti and director Sophie Barthes on Main Street in Park City today. The film premiered Saturday night, and indieWIRE critic Eric Kohn said that "Barthes, directing her first feature, proves she’s up for whatever comes next."
  • Brian Brooks
    29 of 38

    Cuarons Take Park City

    Sony Pictures Classics and Bon Apetit hosted a dinner over the weekend for Carlos Cuaron's "Rudo Y Cursi" starring Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna, which had its U.S. debut at Sundance. The film is Carlos' directorial debut, not a fact lost on his friends and fellow filmmakers, including his brother Alfonso Cuaron (left) and Guillermo del Toro (right) as well as SPC co-prez Michael Barker (far right). During a toast moments after this snap, del Toro said Carlos was a festival virgin and that we were all there to pop his cherry...
  • Peter Knegt
    30 of 38

    Toasting "Tyson"

    At a dinner on Main Street last night, Mike Tyson arrived to celebrate the Park City premiere of James Toback's documentary "Tyson." "I'm pretty excited," Tyson said at the dinner. "I never had no idea it would come to this magnitude."
  • Brian Brooks
    31 of 38

    Redford Joins the Snag Indie Go Go

    Sundance founder Robert Redford surprised a pack crowd of Sundancers Saturday afternoon at a reception for Snag Films and Indie Go Go at the Queer Lounge on Main Street. The crowd rushed forward to get some snaps including us of course, but then it was time to retreat - plus it's a great time to grab a drink at the bar while everyone else is gawking. Joining in on the fun (left to right) are: Rick Allen, CEO of Snag Films, director Ondi Timoner whose film, "We Live in Public" is part of the Sundance documentary competition, Slava Rubin, Indie Go Go head and of course, Mr. Redford.
  • Peter Knegt
    32 of 38

    Anna Wintour In Park City

    After failing to show up for last night's premiere in Salt Lake City, Anna Wintour graced Park City with her presence for this afternoon's Park City screening of R.J Cutler's "The September Issue." Wintour stuck around for a lively Q&A session with Cutler and Sundance's director of programming John Cooper.
  • Peter Knegt
    33 of 38

    Anna Wintour In Park City

    After failing to show up for last night's premiere in Salt Lake City, Anna Wintour graced Park City with her presence for this afternoon's Park City screening of R.J Cutler's "The September Issue." Wintour stuck around for a lively Q&A session with Cutler and Sundance's director of programming John Cooper. "R.J. came to us originally with the idea for another documentary, creating something around The Costume Institute Ball that we do every year," Wintour said. "But the idea of doing a documentary about the September issue is something I've always wanted to do. And as a big fan of R.J.'s work, gradually the discussion evolved into that."
  • Peter Knegt
    34 of 38

    Mariah Celebrates With "Push" Director

    Mariah Carey and Lee Daniels at Friday's world premiere screening of "Push." Reviewing the movie for indieWIRE, Eric Kohn called it, "a movie of many textures, each one illuminating the emotionally gripping narrative at its core." The film got a standing ovation after a screening that included a number of buyers. Hoping to sell the film here in Park City, Cinetic test screened the film earlier this week in Harlem and unveiled it for buyers last night. [Eugene Hernandez]
  • Peter Knegt
    35 of 38

    Gael Celebrates "Rudo" Premiere at Sundance

    Gael Garcia Bernal at a Bon Appetite-sponsored dinner in Park City in celebration of "Rudo y Cursi," in which he stars opposite friend Deigo Luna. The film, directed by Carlos Cuaron (Alfonso's brother), finds Bernal and Luna starring as rivaling brothers who work on a banana ranch and play soccer for the local team. Alfonso Cuaron said at the dinner that the film was made "in the spirit of brotherhood," including "like brothers" such as Bernal, sitting a few seats down from him at the table. "Rudo" premiered Friday night at Park City's Eccles Theatre. [Peter Knegt]
  • Brian Brooks
    36 of 38

    Spike Lee

  • Brian Brooks
    37 of 38

    Redford and Gilmore's Sundance opening

    It was a bit tough for the photographers in the front row to get around the big Britta bottle (a festival sponsor) on the table where both Robert Redford and Sundance director Geoff Gilmore were sitting. During the hour-long press conference, photographers struggled to get a photo of the pair without at least one of them having a big Britta bottle in their face, but after the talk was over, both stood on stage for some quick snaps. Asked during the press conference if he had any thoughts on the pending inauguration of Barack Obama on Tuesday would have any impact on the festival's attendance, Redford said he was fine if things slowed down a bit and was ready for a change in Washington. He even had some parting comments for the current Administration and their whirlwind of exit interviews of late, "For a lame duck, there sure is a lot of quacking going on..."
  • Brian Brooks
    38 of 38

    Cooper and Frilot and the New Frontier

    Sundance's foray into new expressions between film and art opened Thursday afternoon on Main Street in Park City with the festival's New Frontier. Fifteen artists, scientists and artist collectives have installations in a large space across from the festival's marquee space at the Egyptian Theater. "I hope people will come to [New Frontier] not feeling intimidated and will relate to it without feeling they need to read a book," said New Frontier organizer Shari Frilot (left). She's pictured with Sundance's director of programming, John Cooper.

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