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The 2021 Sundance Film Festival runs from Jan. 28 - Feb.3, in Park City, Utah

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Sundance Dramatic Film Competition


Tuesday, December 26----The Sundance Film Festival will see sixteen World Premieres compete in the Festival's prestigious Independent Dramatic Feature Film Competition. It is further evidence of the Festival's critical role as a festival of discovery that all the films in this sixteen-film competition are world premieres, unseen by all but a few close associates and the Festival's programming committee. The anticipation is high, as are the stakes for film distributors in the weeks leading up to the premiere showcase for American independent cinema. The Sundance Film Festival runs from January 18 to 28, 2007 in Park City, Utah, with auxiliary screenings in Salt Lake City, Ogden and at the Sundance Institute.

In all, the Festival received a record 3,287 feature submissions for all its categories (American Independent and World Cinema competitions), with a total of 122 feature films to be screened during the ten-day event. Ouch. That's less than 5% of total submissions. It is often said that the first hurdle is simply getting into the Festival. Now, for those lucky one hundred or so filmmakers, the challenge is how to get noticed in an avalanche of media hype and attention to some of the Festival's more glitzier offerings.

Despite the glut of submissions and the increased tension surrounding the event, the Festival remains committed to its original ideals of discovery and celebration. "We are witnessing a broadening of the traditional independent arena", declared longtime Festival Director Geoffrey Gilmore. "In this year’s Festival there is a breadth of subject matter, vision and innovative storytelling that is transforming the old idea of the American indie film. In particular, this year’s American Competition reflects a newfound awareness and self-expression that results in an engagement by the work that is both political and personal, a collective voice fueled by a steadfast optimism and hope for the future.”

INDEPENDENT FEATURE FILM COMPETITION: DRAMATIC

One of the most recognizable sections of the Festival, the Dramatic Competition presents a broad selection of narrative films representing some of the most compelling and highly anticipated films in American independent cinema. From moving and personal stories about life in suburban and small town America to reflections on life outside America ’s borders, the films in this year’s Dramatic Competition exemplify the range and strength of storytelling that has become entrenched in American independent film. This year’s 16 films were selected from 996 submissions. Each film is a world premiere.

The competing films, in alphabetical order, include:

ADRIFT IN MANHATTAN
Alfredo de Villa directes this ensemble drama set in New York City, where a grieving eye doctor (Heather Graham) is forced to take a closer look at her life; an aging artist confronts the loss of his eyesight, and a young photographer battles his innermost demons.

BROKEN ENGLISH
Parker Posey, Peter Bogdanovich, Drea de Matteo and Gena Rowlands star in the Zoe Cassavetes directed tale of a young woman in her thirties who finds herself surrounded by friends who are married, in relationships or with children. She unexpectedly meets a quirky Frenchman who opens her eyes to a lot more than love.

FOUR SHEETS TO THE WIND
Sterlin Harjo's story about a young Native American man fulfilling his dad's dying wish - disposing of the body in the family pond and setting off to begin a new life in the big city of Tulsa.

THE GOOD LIFE
Mark Webber, Zooey Deschanel, Drea de Matteo, and Bill Paxton star in the tale about a "mostly normal" young man whose small town existence running a faded movie palace is shaken when he comes in contact with a mysterious young woman.

GRACE IS GONE
A young father (John Cusack) learns that his wife has been killed in Iraq and must find the courage to tell his two young daughters the news.

JOSHUA
HELL HOUSE helmer George Ratliff directs this story of a young Manhattan family (Sam Rockwell and Vera Farmiga) is torn apart by the machinations of Joshua, their eight-year-old prodigy, when his newborn baby sister comes home from the hospital.

NOISE
A thriller about a young cop, beset with doubt and afflicted with tinnitus (ear-ringing), is pitched into the chaos that follows a mass murder on a suburban train. He struggles to clear the screaming in his head while the surrounding community deals with the after effects of the terrible crime. Matthew Saville directs.

THE POOL
AMERICAN MOVIE director Chris Smith returns with this Hindi-language film about a boy working in a hotel who becomes obsessed with a swimming pool at a home in the opulent hills of Panjim, Goa in India. His life gets turned upside-down when he attempts to meet the mysterious family that arrives at the house.

ROCKET SCIENCE
SPELLBOUND helmer Jeffrey Blitz wrote and directed this film about a 15-year-old boy from New Jersey with a stuttering problem falls in love with the star of the debate team and finds himself suddenly immersed in the ultra-competitive world of debating.

SNOW ANGELS
David Gordon Green (ALL THE REAL GIRLS) directed this drama that interweaves the life of a teenager with his former baby-sitter (Kate Beckinsale), her estranged husband (Sam Rockwell), and their daughter.

TEETH
Mitchell Lichtenstein's thought-provoking drama about a high school student who discovers she has a "physical advantage" when she becomes the object of male violence.

UNTITLED DAKOTA FANNING PROJECT
An as yet unitlted film by Deborah Kampmeier which is set in late 1950s Alabama. The story follows a precocious, troubled girl (Dakota Fanning) who finds solace in Blues music. Robin Wright Penn, David Morse and Piper Laurie co-star.

WEAPONS
Director Adam Bhala Lough presents a series of brutal, seemingly random youth-related killings over the course of a weekend in a typical small town in America, and tragically reveals how they are all interrelated.


For more information on the complete film schedule and other information, log on to the official website of the Sundance Film Festival: Sundance Film Festival


Sandy Mandelberger
Sundance Festival Dailies Editor

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Ambiance from Park City Sundance film Festival January 19-29, 2012.

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