Sundance 2012

One of the perks of living in Utah during January (especially for a non-winter sport person like myself) is the Sundance film festival. The festival takes place in Park City which means you usually have to battle some snow once you’re there (although they also show movies in Salt Lake City and other surrounding areas). I’ve gone a few times before but I’ve only hung out on main street (you can see pictures from my visit last year here). I’d never gone to see a Sundance film or even spotted a random celebrity.This year I got more involved.

Sundance Look Again Poster

Sundance Look Again Poster

Emily and I found out the festival releases extra tickets for movies each day. You just have to go to the main box office (thankfully located in Salt Lake, not Park City) and line up at 8 am. It’s first come first serve. We looked at the films showing that weekend and picked one that looked like it had potential (no one, of course, has seen these films; they aren’t even rated so you just have to look at the description and pick one). When we got to the box office we were shocked to see the line was already out the door. We got lucky. When it was our turn there were just three tickets left for the movie we wanted to see, Celeste and Jesse Forever!

We also managed to get tickets to Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s HitRecord event. This event was an interactive theater experience. I loved it. The theme of the night was independent/independence. Audience members tweeted their definitions of what independence means on a personal, social, and individual level, as well as what makes a film independent or indie. He pulled a few people on stage and asked them to explain their tweets (If you aren’t familiar with twitter he tracked the tweets by having everyone use the hashtag #hitrecordeccles). This also lead to a conversation about the definition of a hipster , during which we found out that Joseph Gordon-Levitt does not consider himself a hipster and hates it when people call him one (His definition of a hipster was something along the lines of someone who acts like they are creative, but don’t actually produce anything). He also showed a variety of short films and projects people had created through HitRecord. One that we all loved was strawberry bootlaces (you can watch it, in all its adorableness, here). He also read a few stories from the Tiny Book of Tiny Stories and asked a few people to read them aloud. In case you are wondering just what a tiny story is, here is one of the stories that was read at the show:

“The physician’s wife was told that an apple a day kept the doctor away.
Each evening she would eat two apples (just to be safe).
But much to her dismay, her husband still kept coming home.”

Tiny Story, Doctor’s Wife

All of us at HitRecord !! This picture is actually from my friend Emily's site, Movies and Mayhem (You can click the pic to visit her blog).

Parker Posey also participated in the show. She was amazing. I loved listening to her. It was especially interesting to hear the Indie Queen’s perspective on the definition of an indie film (I can’t embed the video but you can see my recording of it on my HitRecord page, here). She also, along with Joseph Gordon-Levitt, did a reading from Tom Sawyer.

JGL ended the night by singing two songs, Baby Mine and Hey Jude. I can’t get my recordings to upload properly right now, but once I do I’ll update this post.

The whole point of the show was to participate in (and record) the creative process. We were asked to record everything and then post it on the HitRecord website. Sadly I forgot my camera, but I grabbed a few grainy pics and recordings on my phone. While the picture is terrible (I think I was too excited because every video I did was very jumpy), the sound quality actually came out all right, so I’m still going to upload some. The next step is to create something of my own to post on HitRecord.

I loved this event and actually participating in Sundance this year. Now that I’ve got the system worked out hopefully my future Sundance experiences will be just as exciting :) I thought I’d end this post by adding a few photos I took during the HitRecord event.

The Eccles Theater, waiting for HitRecord to start

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

It's Joseph Gordon-Levitt! I realize to you it may seem like a white blur wearing a skinny tie, so just take my word for it. He was there.

One of the short films shown that night was a sing along about freedom of the press/ transparency. After we watched Joseph Gordon-Levitt invited people to come on stage and sing along. This was the crowd that ran up. Getting volunteers was no problem, getting them to leave was another issues. Poor JGL had fan girls all over him, haha.

Currently: trying to motivate myself to work on my writing!

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