Sundance Report: Live from Sundance 2011

Filed January 26, 2011

Day launched EARLY for a weathered Sundance Film Music correspondent with filmmaker Jacob Aaron Estes’ (“MEAN CREEK” Sundance alumn) Tobey Maguire, Laura Linney, Elizabeth Banks, Ray Liotta-starrer, “THE DETAILS” – Mr. Estes collaborated with indie film composer vets, “tomandandy” (“THE STRANGERS,” “THE HILLS HAVE EYES,” “THE RULES OF ATTRACTION,” “NATURAL BORN KILLERS”) and Music Supervisor, Chris Douridas (Los Angeles KCRW DJ).

Mr. Estes noted his whimsical, sort-of Danny Elfman score by tomandandy played counter-intuitively against the gradually-dissolving, Karma-haunting onscreen marital discord. He also mentioned that during the principal production shoot, his wife became pregnant, so he inserted her actual medical ultrasound imagery into the analysis screen – mystical harmony, for sure.

Mr. Maguire said he was cast just 6 weeks prior to shooting commencing and stated his “most interesting scene to shoot was when Laura Linney’s character reveals that Maguire inadvertently killed her cat with poison while attempting to exterminate meddlesome raccoons in his backyard – then they have sex – and then she becomes preggers and – – – well, gotta see the film to believe what happens next!

Next, Ali Samadi Ahadi’s harrowing documentary, “THE GREEN WAVE,” recounting with luminous animation 2009’s Iranian election and subsequent social upheaval layers luscious cello, viola, violin, and piano – and occasional synth sound design, that effectively achieves a soulful, minimalist vibe to underscore the acerbic onscreen government crackdown in the days preceding and following the country’s attempt at democratic sovereignty.

Down in the Kimball Junction parcel of Park City, just off Hwy 80, the Short films award ceremony was staged for the 2nd year at a day-glo balls (see pic) rock ‘n roll bowling alley – here is the official Press Office posting.


Filmmakers from Australia, Poland, Spain, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Canada and the United States Celebrated for their Documentary and Narrative Work

Park City, UT –The 2011 Sundance Film Festival this evening announced the jury prizes in shorts filmmaking and gave honorable mentions based on outstanding achievement and merit. The awards were presented at a ceremony held in Park City, Utah. These award recipients will also be honored at the Festival’s Awards Ceremony hosted by Sundance Alum Tim Blake Nelson on Saturday, January 29.

The 2011 Short Film jurors are Barry Jenkins (director, writer, Medicine for Melancholy); Kim Morgan (Film and Culture writer, Sunset Gun, The Hitlist) and Sara Bernstein (Vice president, HBO Documentary films; supervising producer, Baghdad ER, White Light, Black Rain: The Destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki).

The Jury Prize in Short Filmmaking was awarded to Brick Novax pt 1 and 2 (Director and Screenwriter: Matt Piedmont)— Penniless and now living in a seedy motel with only weeks to live, international super legend Brick Novax records his amazing tales as an astronaut, movie star, corporate CEO, and famous musician to preserve his legacy as the coolest guy in the history of the world.

The Jury Prize in International Short Filmmaking was given to Deeper Than Yesterday Australia (Director and Screenwriter: Ariel Kleiman) – After three months submerged underwater in a submarine, the crew have become savages. Oleg, one of the men onboard, fears that losing perspective may mean losing himself.

In addition, The Shorts Jury awarded Honorable Mentions in Short Filmmaking to:

Choke / Canada (Drector and Screenwriter: Michelle Latimer)— Upon leaving his First Nations reserve, Jimmy encounters the lost souls of the city and is reminded that no matter how far you travel, you cannot escape who you are.

Diarchy / Italy (Director and Screenwriter: Ferdinando Cito Filmomarino) – Giano and Luc are traveling through the woods when a storm breaks, forcing them to take shelter in Luc’s villa. Gradually and insidiously, a competition emerges between them, with terrible consequences.

The External World / Germany, Ireland (Director and Screenwriter: David O’Reilly) – A boy learns to play the piano.

The Legend of Beaver Dam / Canada (Director: Jerome Sable; Screenwriters: Jerome Sable and Eli Batalion) – When a ghost story around the campfire awakens an evil monster, it’s up to nerdy Danny Zigwitz to be the hero and save his fellow campers from a bloody massacre.

Out of Reach / Poland (Director and Screenwriter: Jakub Stozek) – Karolina and Natalia seek refuge from their domineering father and reminiscence about sad childhood without a mother in a basement of their block of flats.

Protoparticles / Spain (Director and Screenwriter: Chema García Ibarra) – The experiment was a success: protomatter exists.

Grand Jury Prize winner, “Brick Novax pt 1 and 2” Filmmaker and Screenwriter Matt Piedmont after organic elation from taking the top-shelf prize was gracious enough to sit with me and thoughtfully respond to his filmmaker-in-the-making journey.

Mr. Piedmont says as he grew up, he was “heavily influenced by Martin Scorcese’s MEAN STREETS – particularly the ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ sequence, the Smokey Robinson track, and the ‘Be My Baby’ track.”

Mr. Piedmont wrote all his own music for “Brick Novax pt 1 and 2” and recorded at Beacon Street Studios in Venice, CA. He says, “I grew up heavily influenced by Bob Dylan and the Velvet Underground, and own over 8,000 vinyl records. I wrote all the music into the script and also, like Scorcese, I played music on the production set to inform the emotional vibe from the actors.”

International Grand Jury Prize winner, Filmmaker and Screenwriter Ariel Kleiman’s “Deeper Than Yesterday” reply to my composition collaboration inquiries, “I was very fortunate to have our composer (London-based Maxwell Riess) attached very early in the film’s development, so he sent me tracks as creative options – many created BEFORE production shooting and we raced like hell to finish his score and the film in order to submit to my Victoria College of Arts deadline. It paid off, as the film thankfully premiered at Cannes.”