film festivals

And it’s a lot different than Quinn Fabray.

When we caught up with Dianna Agron at Birchbox’s event at this year’s Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, she told us all about her role in Zipper and it’s sure to make you forget all about her happy-go-lucky character in Glee. The actress decided to take on a totally new role, and it might just be her darkest and most mature part yet.

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My brother way back in the 90’s. This picture came out cool. Hate to take advantage of his tears.😂

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James Franco, Zachary Quinto and Charlie Carver interview at Sundance

Filmmaking for the 99%: 

A quick look at Sundance in 2014:

  • 8,161 short films were submitted.
  • Sundance likes to screen 6-7 films in each program, running 90-100 minutes total.
  • Using those numbers, let’s say the average film is 14.6 minutes.

That’s 119,151 minutes or 1986 hours or 83 days of short film submissions. It would take an individual screener a year to watch, consider, and review each film. Keep in mind, the top films are watched multiple times before being programmed. And all this is actually done in 6 months, with a heavy time crunch in the last 60 days.

It’s difficult to imagine any system being able to maintain a true sense of merit-based objectivity applied to all 8,161 submissions.

Enter DigiPops, an online festival that is attempting to change the game for independent filmmakers: 

DigiPops is the short film discovery application of the future. Here you can submit, vote, and promote yourself and others.  You are recognized for your work through a transparent, fair system of organization and curation called The Pop Machine. The Pop Machine provides you the tools to even the playing field and give everyone an equal chance to be recognized for quality filmmaking. We hope DigiPops can be an alternative to the current market realities: 

  • 99.2% of short films rejected at Sundance 2014
  • Over 99% of theatrical distribution is owned by 13 companies.
  • Less than 0.3% of box offfice distribution is truly independent, not owned by a major international media conglomerate.

I’m trying out the platform with a film I made called A Simple Reminder. Go watch, vote, and submit your own films to participate in the beta season.

Tribeca: Morgan Spurlock, Michelle Williams, and Chris Colfer join festival

The Tribeca Film Festival announced its Spotlight and Cinemania programs today, including Morgan Spurlock’s latest documentary, Mansome, period drama Cheerful Weather for the Wedding with Like Crazy‘s Felicity Jones (right), and Struck By Lightning, written by Glee‘s Chris Colfer. “It was important that we head into Tribeca’s second decade highlighting projects that were attuned to the pulse of our cultural climate,” said director of programming Genna Terranova, in a release. “That said, both consciousness and levity play a prominent role in this year’s selection. We are also eager to introduce audiences to a group of films that are reworking genres and testing traditional modes of storytelling.”

Simultaneously, the sixth annual Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival will open with the world premiere of Benji, a documentary about a high school basketball phenom who was murdered in 1984 before getting an opportunity to fulfill his promise. “This year’s Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival films explore athletes’ diverse challenges on and off the playing fields,” said Terranova. “I’m excited we can share these inspiring stories — from runners training for the Olympics in rural Africa to Tim Wakefield’s ever-elusive and now historic knuckleball — with both our sports and documentary fans alike.”

The 11th edition of Tribeca will take place from April 18-29 in New York City.

Struck By Lightning, directed by Brian Dannelly, written by Chris Colfer. (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. Even being killed by a bolt of lightning won’t keep Carson Phillips quiet. A hyper-ambitious and outspoken high school senior in a small-minded town, Carson (Glee’s Chris Colfer) narrates his own funeral and the last few weeks of his life through a series of sarcastic flashbacks in this upbeat and energetic comedy from Saved! director Brian Dannelly. With Allison Janney, Dermot Mulroney, and Drive’s Christina Hendricks.

March 8, 2012 - Entertainment Weekly