Overnight this place has transformed from a ghost town to a zoo. We checked in at Sundance headquarters, and the place was packed. I met a group of filmmakers from Argentina who have a short called Plan B (which screened at Cannes last year), and they told me I could stay with them if I ever came to their country. I don’t think they realize that I’m actually going to take them up on that. Aside from all the free tickets and passes, Sundance provided a stipend for food and some free boots and a jacket from Timberline, which was great because my toes were cold.
One of the small things that every indie film needs at a festival is some swag to hand to people when they ask about your project. I got a bunch of pins and postcards and business cards for pretty cheap from an online printer. It’s just helpful in starting conversations I think (especially when your logo is a puffy cloud with a rainbow smile and broken leg).
There wasn’t too much to do today, since the kick-off wasn’t until the evening. So, I spent most of the time walking around on Main Street, taking pictures with statues of wild beasts.
The opening night film was a really weird, hilarious, touching, emotional, quirky, dark, claymation movie called Mary and Max. The story was incredibly moving and the animation was some of the best I’ve ever seen, and having Philip Seymour Hoffman as one of the lead voices was a nice bonus. I won’t give away much, because I’m sure you’ll see it sometime, but I was in tears by the end, so prepare yourself.
After that, we went to the opening party, which was packed with young people with bleached hair and tight pants, bouncing to ’80s pop and spilling alcohol on each others’ shoes. We retreated to the upstairs lounge and chatted with the old ladies with big teeth who were really into movies, and young directors. We also got to meet some of the short filmmakers in our block (Shorts #4), who were all really cool. And now it’s almost 4 a.m., and I feel like I’m going to die.
Good thing I only have 9 more days of this stuff.
To see Destin’s first Sundance Filmmaker blog entry for Flavorwire, click here.