Tag Archives: Sundance

PUSHing PRECIOUS Mariah Carey & Mo’Nique

[FROM SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL 2009, January 27, 2009] pushqa.jpg About three days ago, I posted the PUSH Q&A from the 2009 Sundance Film Festival on YouTube. There are nearly a thousand hits already. People are really excited about this film. As far as I know, it doesn’t have distribution, yet (although there is an internet rumor that Lionsgate may be negotiating for it). The YouTube link is in three sections (because everything has to be less than ten minutes) so I’m posting the PUSH Q&A as a SINGLE 56 MB file here. The resolution is only 320×180 but at least the Q&A is intact.

moniquemariah.jpgMy favorite sections? When Mariah Carey thanks director Lee Daniels for taking a shot on her. I am told that Carey’s performance was terrific … NOT diva-ish at all. There’s an extraordinary moment with Mo’Nique (who was given a Special Jury Prize for her performance in PUSH) when an audience member asks her what she’ll wear to the Oscars. “Nothing,” is her reply. Now, that I would have to see. It would make Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction seem pretty tame.


Part 1 of 3 :: One of the BEST things about attending the Sundance Film Festival (or any festival for that matter) is hearing the artists speaking about their projects. I was (sooo tragically) unable to attend PUSH because I had to do some press for our documentary. Alec and Mike came back raving about the film. Alec said he wanted to see it again … if there were any way possible … he’d go again at Sundance before we left. That told me that the film was amazing and incredible. I am very grateful that the guys captured the Q&A following the Friday evening screening at the Racquet Club in Park City, Utah. I had to break it into three parts to put it on YouTube. Enjoy.

PUSH Q& A: Part 1 of 3 (below)
PUSH Q & A: Part 2 of 3
PUSH Q & A: Part 3 of 3

Thanks to Videographer Michael Montesa. All Rights Reserved.


Grand Jury Prize, Dramatic:
PUSH: Based on a novel by Sapphire Lee Daniels.

Audience Award, Dramatic:
PUSH: Based on the novel by Sapphire directed by Lee Daniels.

Shortly after the festival, Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey put their full support behind the film. It got an excellent distribution deal and I’m eagerly awaiting its arrival at the local multiplex.

Sundance Film Festival Jobs … CA and UT

If you’re interested in working in some capacity for the Sundance Film Festival, you can check in at the SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL JOB MANAGER and see what’s available. There are employment opportunities in California and Utah. There are opportunities that run the duration of the festival and longer term commitments that may last several months.

waitlistSundanceThe Sundance Film Festival Job Manager is an online job board that lets users create / upload their resume and apply for jobs for the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. Positions that are filled relatively quickly. If you are interested in applying for any of the positions, you will need to begin by registering! Click here to register!

Examples of the sorts of jobs that might be available include:

Assistant Coordinator, Press Materials, Closing Date: 11/18/2009, Park City, UT;
Assistant II, Production, Closing Date: 12/09/2009, Park City, UT;
Coordinator, Ticketing Helpdesk; Closing Date: 10/07/2009, Park City, UT;
Coordinator, Transportation; Closing Date: 11/04/2009, Park City, UT;
Editorial Intern, Closing Date: 11/06/2009, Los Angeles, CA;
Marketing Intern, Closing Date: 11/03/2009, Park City, UT;

Sundance Institute strongly believes in strength in diversity and actively encourages applications from women, people of color, differently abled people and all persons who support the Institute’s mission. Positions are constantly be added. Check in on the website for latest openings!

Sundance for Free … Volunteer

The economy is tight but you can still attend the 2010 Sundance Festival and, if you’re willing to get your hands dirty, you can practically do it for FREE. The Sundance Volunteer Program is an excellent way to understand the inner workings of the festival, meet a bazillion filmmakers, be the first to see the best indie films and get a really warm, collectible jacket. The 2010 Sundance Film Festival runs from January 21 through 31 and your chances of getting in are pretty good. For the 1,500 positions, they typically receive about 3,000 applications. Mathematically, you’ve got a 50/50 shot at a volunteer position … and there are different volunteer options.

Volunteer Options

Sign-Up Volunteers, 24+ hours, you sign up for your schedule:
Commit to a minimum total of 24 volunteer hours, sign up for more hours as you desire-minimum of three to six shifts (depending on shift lengths) during the Festival. Sign up in advance for specific shift times of your choosing, as available. Attend pre-Festival trainings and New Volunteer Orientation.

Full-Time Volunteers, 80+ hours, we assign a Full-Time schedule:
Commit to a pre-assigned Festival schedule of eight to 10 hours each day (approximate total of 80-90 volunteer hours).
Be available to work the entire Festival period as determined by job assignment (varies). Attend pre-Festival trainings.

Volunteer Benefits

Volunteers are essential to the Festival. We recognize the time they devote to the Festival and provide benefits to volunteers as a thank you for volunteer service. Benefits are provided in conjunction with the number of hours volunteered, and for Full-Time Volunteers, the skills needed for the position held.

All Volunteers:
Festival Access: Volunteer Credentials allow access to Festival panels and some official Festival venues on a space-available basis (similar credential costs $200). We also offer a few screenings just for volunteers. volunteerJacketsMost of all, we want to be sure volunteers can see films. For almost every screening, we set aside a certain number of tickets only for volunteers. Film access depends on the number of hours volunteered:

  • 24 hours: Receive one volunteer voucher for every four hours volunteered. Volunteer vouchers are redeemable for one film ticket for the volunteer through the volunteer or waitlist line as space is available. Vouchers and credentials are non-transferable and must be used by the volunteer with their credential.
  • 40 hours: Benefits above, plus two guest waitlist ticket vouchers. Another guest voucher can be earned at 60 hours.
  • 80 hours/Full-Time: Vouchers are replaced by a volunteer photo credential, allowing the volunteer access to unlimited Festival screenings through the volunteer line on a space available basis (when not volunteering, of course!). Also four guest waitlist ticket vouchers, if local/providing own lodging.

Uniform: Jacket and Volunteer Credential.
Party: Ticket to the Staff and Volunteer Opening Night Party.
Refreshments such as bagels and other snacks will be provided at the offices, venues, and theatres where volunteers are working.

Email: volunteers@sundance.org
Reception Phone: (435) 658-3456
Volunteer Hotline: (435) 776-7870
For more information: Sundance Site FAQ

Sundance 2010 :: Time to Register :: NOW!

Registration for Sundance 2010 Festival Passes and Ticket Packages is NOW open and closes on 9 October, 2010. Less than a week remains for you to register. Less than a week remains!

IN ORDER TO PURCHASE A FESTIVAL PASS OR TICKET PACKAGE, YOU MUST FIRST REGISTER ONLINE ANYTIME BETWEEN SEPTEMBER 22 AND OCTOBER 9, 2009. After the close of registration, you will receive an email on October 14, 2009 indicating whether or not you were randomly selected to receive a half-hour timeslot. If you receive a timeslot, you will be sent the website link and phone number you can use to purchase your Festival Pass or Ticket Package. Quantities are very limited and registration does not guarantee a timeslot or availability. Purchase dates and times are randomly assigned by a computer.


A FESTIVAL PASS does not require any ticket selection. Patrons simply need to be seated 15 minutes prior to showtime for any film presented within the restrictions of their particular pass dates/locations/time periods. Companions must have their own pass. Festival pass prices range in price from the $300 Film School Pass to the $3000 Express Pass A.

A TICKET PACKAGE requires ticket selection after films are announced. Selection times are during the first week of January. A patron may select one to four tickets per screening within the restrictions of their ticket quantity limits, dates, or geographic locations. And, since all Ticket Packages come with two Festival Credentials, they are ideal for sharing among couples looking to attend the Festival. Ticket package prices range in price from the $200 Credential pass to the $750 Ticket Page A.

NEW THIS YEAR: Patrons may purchase a combination of up to four DIFFERENT Festival Passes and/or Ticket Packages. Each patron is restricted to selecting only one TYPE of Festival Pass, Ticket Package, or Festival Credential per transaction, with a limit of four items total per order. Please note, each Ticket Package will be assigned a unique half-hour timeslot in January to select tickets. For example, you may select your tickets for a Ticket Package A on Monday, but may not select tickets for a Discovery Package until Wednesday.

Last Chance for Sundance 2010


As a filmmaker, this is it. Your last chance to enter your film in Sundance 2010 is Friday, September 25, 2009. As a film lover, you should be starting to make your plans for the Sundance Film Festival of 2010. The 2010 website is up and it’s got lots of stories about previous festival successes. There’s information on places to stay and how to get tickets. So, those who don’t like to come screaming up to a deadline, now is the time to get ready for the festival.

For the deadline (aka adrenaline) inspired, here are the links and information on the final moment to enter your film.

Monday, September 21st, 2009 – $75 ENTRY FEE

Friday, September 25th, 2009 – $100 ENTRY FEE

Please note that the above dates are not postmark deadlines — they are the dates by which your film MUST be received in their office! If your film does not arrive by the deadline for which you have registered, you will be prompted to make an additional payment in order to bring your account up to date.

If you already have an account with withoutabox.com, you may use it to login in. If you do not, one will be created for you when you fill out the application. You may make changes to your application at any time by logging in at www.withoutabox.com. If you have any questions, you may contact them via e-mail at programming@sundance.org.

CLICK HERE TO GET REGISTERED! You’ll have to deliver your film TOMORROW!

And, to find out about the different Sundance categories, here’s the FAQ PDF link!



Click the desired video format to watch the Q & A.
MPEG4 format     Flash Video Format     Windows Media

While we were at Sundance, Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th president of the United States. Everything stopped at Sundance on that Tuesday morning. We all watched the proceedings and then returned to our panels, screenings and meetings. Amazingly, the night before, we attended a screening of PROM NIGHT IN MISSISSIPPI about a town that just finally had an integrated prom in the spring of 2008. That’s right, 2008.

From the Sundance film guide, ” In 1997, Academy Award–winning actor Morgan Freeman offered to pay for the senior prom at Charleston High School in Mississippi under one condition: the prom had to be racially integrated. His offer was ignored. In 2008, Freeman offered again. This time the school board accepted, and history was made. Charleston High School had its first-ever integrated prom—in 2008! Until then, blacks and whites had had separate proms even though their classrooms have been integrated for decades. Canadian filmmaker Paul Saltzman follows students, teachers, and parents in the lead-up to the big day. Freeman addresses the student body. Girls shop for dresses and get their hair done. Boys rent tuxedoes and buy corsages. These seemingly inconsequential rites of passage suddenly become profound as the weight of history falls on teenage shoulders. mikecyndi.jpgWe quickly learn that change does not come easily in this sleepy Delta town. Freeman’s generosity fans the flames of racism—and racism in Charleston has a distinctly generational tinge. Some white parents forbid their children to attend the integrated prom and hold a separate white-only dance. ""Billy Joe,"" an enlightened white senior, appears on camera in shadow, fearing his racist parents will disown him if they know his true feelings. Prom Night In Mississippi captures a big moment in a small town, where hope finally blossoms in black, white, and a whole lot of taffeta.”

As I said in the posting about ADAM, I keep promising myself that I’ll break the videos that Michael Montesa shot into shorter, 10-minute chunks for posting on YouTube but, thus far, time doesn’t seem to be appearing. So, I’m doing the lazy human version, linking to his site so you can enjoy the video in this lifetime! Thanks to Michael for his prompt posting and diligent recording!! Go check out his wonderful photos and videos at MichaelMontesa.com!

Courtesy of Michael Montesa. ©2008, All Rights Reserved.

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