Sundance 2020 Special Part 1: Documentary
This year, Sundance Film Festival’s Cinema Cafe featured an interview with Ron Howard, where he talked about shooting his first documentary, Rebuilding Paradise. We present some selected soundbites of the conversation. Howard had personal connections to the town of Paradise, California, so he decided to find out what the citizens there were doing to rebuild their community after the devastating fires destroyed the town.
Imagine Entertainment now produces its own content in documentary, children’s entertainment, multicultural low-budget films, podcasts, branded entertainment and animation.
Rebuilding Paradise will be released in theaters later this year by National Geographic.
Find Ron Howard: Instagram @realronhoward
See the entire interview
Filmmakers Michael Dweck and Gregory Kershaw ventured deep in the forests near Alba, Italy for their documentary, The Truffle Hunters. This region is known for its rare white truffles, fetching thousands of dollars for the acclaimed delicacy. The methods of where and how to find truffles is a closely guarded secret. This small group of elderly men seek them in darkness, hiking for miles with their dogs and covering their tracks so no one knows where they go. The film is beautifully composed and uses mostly natural light. The filmmakers chose to keep the camera on a tripod and to observe the subjects at a distance, except for special leather harness rigs for POV doggy-cams that Dweck and Kershaw had specially made.
Sony Pictures Classics has acquired worldwide rights to The Truffle Hunters for $1.5 million.
Find Michael Dweck Twitter: @michaeldweck
Happy Happy Joy Joy: The Ren & Stimpy Story is both a story that will please fans of the beloved cartoon Ren & Stimpy, but it’s also a critical look at the cartoon’s volatile creator, John Kricfalusi. The self-financed documentary ended up being a long process and a huge undertaking by filmmakers Ron Cicero and Kimo Easterwood. After the film’s completion, news broke of John K.’s inappropriate relationship with two teenage fans, so the entire movie had to be reworked.
Happy Happy Joy Joy: The Ren & Stimpy Story has yet to find distribution.
Facebook: @renandstimpydoc Instagram: #renandstimpydoc
Find Ron Cicero: Twitter @roncicero
Close Focus: The argument for shooting vertical video, and what that means for the future of filmmaking. Here’s a fun little ditty to remind us to turn our phones when shooting video.
Ben’s short end: The Errol Morris documentary American Dharma is streaming on Kanopy. Morris interviews Steve Bannon, Trump’s former chief strategist, and the doc struggled to find distribution due to the controversy of its subject.
Illya’s short end: The Dissident, which premiered at Sundance this year, deals with the Saudi Arabian government killing journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The film is still seeking a distributor, and it needs to be seen.
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Ben Rock: @neptunesalad twitter
Producer: Alana Kode