The Sundance Film Festival: A Personal Reflection

Posted by Alia Haddad on January 28, 2013 at 1:56 pm

The Sundance Film Festival: A Personal Reflection

Now that the 2013 Sundance Film Festival has come to a close this past weekend, I thought I’d take a minute to reflect on my experience there. This was my first time at Sundance, but I hope to God that it isn’t my last.

While I have been to film festivals before–and I’m already getting excited for the TriBeCa Film Festival in April–there was something incredibly special about Sundance. No, it wasn’t just knowing that I was partaking in something that Robert Redford personally created and, subsequently, named after my favorite character that he’s ever played, although I’m sure that had something to do with it. Even more than that, however, and what seemed to set the Festival apart for me was the sense of comradery that it contained. Rather, everyone, or most everyone, was in town for one thing: to partake in this film festival. While that means different things to different people–I was in town to watch the films, while others were there to promote their films, while even others were there simply to network–everyone rallied to be in this small, cold town in Utah because of this film festival. Never have I felt more excited to be apart of this industry. Like a summer camp for entertainment reporters, Sundance allowed me to do one of the best things about this job: talk to my peers and colleagues about film. It was just great.

While I am sad that it is over–and even more sad that the short work week is behind us–I am just so grateful that I even got to be apart of this year’s Sundance. To say that I will never forget this experience would be an understatement. I just hope that this year won’t be my last. And before I depart, I leave you with five fun facts that I, a novice, picked up this year from the Sundance Film Festival:

1. The documentaries (Stories We Tell and The Crash Reel especially) seemed to prove stronger and all-around better this year than the narrative films. Does this signal a change in the times or is this just happenstance?

2. Ken Marino is really hilarious. The man walked around Park City photo bombing unsuspecting individuals. I was lucky enough to be one of those victims.

3. If you weren’t able to make it out to the icy town where the sun was often an illusion, don’t you fret because so many of the films have already gotten picked up for distribution.

4. Just because a movie premieres at the Festival–even one of the most laudable film festivals–does NOT guarantee that it will be good. Trust me.

5. Who knew that Park City, Utah had some decent Mexican food? Two words: El Chubasco.



One Comment

  1. I am so jealous, I want to go to Park City and partake in the festival sometime soon. Ive got to live through the online experience til then http://www.real.com/resources/2013-sundance-film-festival-award-winners You can watch 12 short films that premiered at the festival on the Sundance Institute’s Screening Room channel on YouTube, so Ill give that a whirl.

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