Sundance 2019: Day 6

Sundance: Queer Brunch with team from End
Artist Relations with the team from End at the Queer Brunch

Director of Programming James McNally is attending this year’s Sundance Film Festival from January 22nd to February 3rd.

Festival Day 4

I slept until after 9:00am this morning and didn’t get into HQ until nearly 11:00am. After Bobby and I went over the day’s schedule, he received a message from the filmmakers of End inviting us to join them at the Queer Brunch being held nearby at the Grub Steak restaurant. It was jammed and we weren’t officially on the guest list, but a kind security guy let us in, where we enjoyed a rather-too-early-in-the-morning-for-me cocktail. The event is put on by OutFest, and so I didn’t know anything about it, but it was really packed and very warm. Yimit and Gregorio have been so kind to us so far and are really enjoying their visit to the festival. We also bumped into Trevor and Fish from Docking and since their films are both in the same programme (Midnight Shorts), they spent a lot of time talking together.

We could only stay about 30 minutes before we headed off to the Ray Cinema to present the short The Dispossessed before the feature film Midnight Family. The filmmakers were early and were accompanied by Kamau Bilal, whose short Baby Brother charmed me last year. We spent a lot of time talking about Roma, Cuaron’s other films as well as those of Denis Villeneuve. It was great to talk to such a friendly and knowledgeable bunch of guys. They had also brought their producer from Kashmir, who had taken five separate flights to get here. The film premiered today on the New York Times OpDoc site. Check it out!

After that we had about an hour break, which we spent at Bobby’s festival-provided lodging which was nearly right across the street from the Ray. We grabbed food at Fresh Market first and had a nice lunch break and a great talk.

Around 5:00pm, we grabbed a Lyft and headed to Temple Theatre again for back to back screenings. First was the Animation Spotlight, most of which I got to sit in on. Obon and Octane were noteworthy, and it was great to see Knockstrike again (and to meet and talk to one of the filmmakers). We didn’t have much turnaround time so I got pulled out before the Q&A to prepare for the press line for Shorts Program 3.

Oddly, it was their third screening, since we didn’t do the press line at Redstone Cinemas and their second screening was in Salt Lake City. One of the films starred John Leguizamo’s daughter, so he was there to accompany her. Two of the films were directed by filmmakers familiar to me: Easter Snap is by Ramell Ross, who directed the lovely Hale County, This Morning, This Evening, and Lockdown is by Celine Held and Logan George, whose recent short Caroline premiered at Cannes. Unfortunately, I didn’t stay to watch the films. I hope to catch them later in the week.

We wrapped just after 9:00pm and I was back home by 10:00pm writing up the day. Things really drop off tomorrow, so I’m going to attend a few events, including the Telefilm Canada luncheon and a reception for film festivals who are part of the Film Festival Organizers Facebook group.

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