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DAILY NEWS: Sundance Stays in Park City; IFC ’70s Doc; Florida Fest Winners

DAILY NEWS: Sundance Stays in Park City; IFC '70s Doc; Florida Fest Winners

DAILY NEWS: Sundance Stays in Park City; IFC '70s Doc; Florida Fest Winners

by Eugene Hernandez and Brian Brooks/indieWIRE

>> Sundance Film Festival Staying in Park City; 2002 Festival Set One Week Earlier

(indieWIRE/06.20.01) — The Sundance Institute has signed an agreement with
the city of Park City, UT to keep the festival in the mountain resort at
least through 2005, with the potential for an extension through the year
2008. As part of the pact, the Festival will secure up to a quarter million
dollars of support from the city each year, including transportation
assistance, waivers for facility rental, and police services. Additionally,
organizers are planning to stage the Festival a week earlier to avoid
congestion caused by the upcoming Winter Olympics.

Organizers had explored moving the annual Festival to Salt Lake City or
another city in the West. The Institute ultimately decided to stay and sign
its first formal agreement with Park City, the site it has called home since

The announcement comes amidst the news that the 2002 Festival will be taking
place one week earlier (January 10 – 20) in order to avoid the crush of
people that will descend upon the Utah resort in advance of the Winter
Olympics (February 8 – 24). In fact, Sundance organizers are encouraging
2002 Festival attendees to make their plans early. An email message recently
sent to indieWIRE by Sundance staff confirmed that the Festival will run one
week earlier and indicated, “We therefore encourage you to make lodging
arrangements as soon as possible in order to guarantee the best selection.”

22,000 attendees descend upon the growing mountain resort for ten days each
January during Sundance, not to mention Slamdance and other alternative
events. Estimates provided in the announcement indicate that the Festival
contributes $30 million to Utah’s tourism industry.

“We are very pleased to enter into the first formal agreement with Park
City,” Sundance Film Festival Co-Director Nicole Guillemet said in a
prepared statement. “This mutual commitment will help the city and the
festival to meet shared goals: a quality experience for both the local
community and for the national and international festival participants.”
[Eugene Hernandez]

>> IFC Sets ’70s Doc With Demme and LaGravanese

(indieWIRE/06.20.01) — A new documentary recognizing American films and
filmmakers of the 1970s is headed into production, with the producer/director team of Ted Demme and Richard LaGravenese creating the movie for the Independent Film Channel. Funding for the project, which is slated to include contemporary filmmakers interviewing directors from the ’70s, is coming from IFC Originals, a division of IFC Entertainment with Jonathan Sehring, Caroline Kaplan and Alison Palmer Bourke of IFC Entertainment executive producing the project. Demme and LaGravenese will also serve as producers and writers for the project. The film will be released theatrically by IFC Films in late 2002 prior to its network debut, according to the announcement.

According to Tuesday’s press release, the duo will “approach the project as
they would a feature film, and will carry it out in the spirit and style of
the films of the era.” An expanded version of the project will air on IFC.
The network plans to air outtakes and exclusive extras from the film, in
addition to hour-long segments of the doc hosted by filmmakers and including
movies from the 1970s.

“For me, the ’70s were a turning point where studio heads were at an age
when they were losing contact with the audience and their formulas weren’t
working anymore,” LaGravenese said in a prepared statement. “They turned to
a handful of young filmmakers and gave them a revolutionary independence.
The films held so many breakthroughs in style and in form, and showed that
originality can be commercially feasible.” [Brian Brooks]

>> Minnick and Davis Win Florida Fest Jury Awards; Bezucha and Butler Big with Audiences

(indieWIRE/06.20.01) — Dani Minnick‘s “Falling Like This” was the winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Narrative Feature at the 2001 Florida Film
Festival, while Kate Davis‘ “Southern Comfort” was awarded the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary Feature. This year marked the 10th anniversary
for Enzian Film Society‘s Florida Film Festival — which takes place outside of Orlando — an event that is considered one of the leading regional film festivals in
the country.

In audience balloting, the audience award for Best Narrative Feature went to
Thomas Bezucha‘s “Big Eden,” while George Butler‘s “The Endurance” received the audience award for Best Documentary Feature. Butler’s doc also received the Florida Forever Filmmaker Award.

The Grand Jury Award for Best Narrative Short went to Greg Marcks for
Lector” and the Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary Short went to “Riding the Tiger” by John Haptas & Kristine Samuelson. Lianne Klapper McNally‘s “Artists & Orphans” won the audience award for Best Short Film.

Joel Hopkins was selected as a finalist for the Perrier Bubbling Under
, putting him in competition with four other filmmakers for a grant of
$50,000 to be applied to his next production. [Eugene Hernandez]

[indieWIRE will publish a report from the 2001 Florida Film Festival in an
upcoming edition.]

>> YESTERDAY in indieWIRE DAILY NEWS: IFC Gets “Mama”; “Bliss” Won, Too

(indieWIRE/06.19.01) — Alfonso Cuaron‘s “Y Tu Mama” which broke records its opening weekend in its native Mexico has been picked up by IFC Films.
Also, “Virgil Bliss” by Joe Maggio was mistakenly omitted in yesterday’s
indieWIRE for winning the Best Narrative Film prize at the recently
concluded Atlanta Film & Video Festival.


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