Montreal, November 30, 2006 – Telefilm Canada is proud to announce that seven Canadian feature-length films have been officially selected at the prestigious 2007 Sundance Film Festival – the strongest Canadian line-up since 2003. Four of the Canadian filmmakers will be returning to the Festival for their sophomore year: Jennifer Baichwal (The True Meaning of Pictures: Shelby Lee Adam’s Appalachia; 2003), S. Wyeth Clarkson (deadend.com; 2003), Sarah Polley (I Shout Love; 2002) and Ian Iqbal Rashid (Touch of Pink; 2004). The 2007 Sundance Film Festival takes place in Park City, Utah, January 18Â¬-28.
“It’s a great honour having such an incredible year for Canadian cinema at Sundance,” enthused Wayne Clarkson, who will be attending the Festival for the first time in his capacity as Executive Director at Telefilm Canada. “Canada is also pleased to be at Sundance to take advantage of the sales, promotion, financing and networking opportunities.”
The Canadian contingent for the 2007 Sundance Film Festival is comprised of:
(short film line-up will be announced by the Festival on December 6, 2006)
Away From Her (US premiere)
Directed by Sarah Polley; produced by The Film Farm and Foundry Films Inc.; Canadian distribution by Capri Releasing; US distribution by Lionsgate Films; world sales by Hanway Films
Away From Her is a screen adaptation of Alice Munro’s short story, The Bear Came Over the Mountain. Grant moves his wife Fiona into a nursing home specializing in Alzheimer’s disease. But when he sees her again, she has forgotten him and turned her affection to another resident. Fiona becomes deeply depressed, prompting Grant to embark on his greatest act of self-sacrifice. Film premiered at the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival as a Gala.
World Cinema Competition: Dramatic
How She Move (World premiere)
Directed by Ian Iqbal Rashid; produced by Sienna Films Inc.; Canadian distribution by Mongrel Media; world sales by Celluloid Dreams
16-year-old stellar student Raya is on the fast track to success until the unexpected death of her sister, a drug addict, changes everything. Scrambling for a way to clear her family’s financial hurdles, she turns to a most unlikely arena: the electrifying world of step dancing, a type of dance that combines jazz and hip-hop, with cheerleading, tap dancing and stomp moves.
RÃªves de poussiÃ¨re (France/ Canada/ Burkina Faso coproduction; US premiere)
Directed by Laurent Salgues; produced by AthenaÃ¯se productions, Corporation ACPAV Inc., and SahÃ©lis Production; world sales by Wide Management
Mocktar, a Nigerian peasant, comes looking for work in a gold mine in Northeast Burkina Faso. In this cage made of wind and dust, he hopes to forget the past that haunts him. While becoming familiar with his new life, Mocktar starts to loose his roots. Film premiered at the 2006 Venice Film Festival and has since garnered awards in Belgium and France.
World Cinema Competition: Documentary
Manufactured Landscapes (International premiere)
Directed by Jennifer Baichwal; produced by Mercury Films Inc., Foundry Films Inc., and the National Film Board of Canada; Canadian distribution by Mongrel Media; US distribution by Zeitgeist Films
Manufactured Landscapes follows Edward Burtynsky through China as he photographs the country’s massive industrial revolution. The film leads us to meditate on our impact on the planet, and shifts our consciousness about the world and the way we live in it. Winner of The Toronto City Award for Best Canadian Feature Film at the 2006 Toronto International Film Festival.
On a Tightrope (Norway/Canada coproduction; North American premiere)
Directed by Petr Lom; produced by Piraya Film, Lom Films; world sales by Films Transit International
The daily lives of four children living in an orphanage who are learning the ancient art of tightrope walking becomes a metaphor for the struggle of the Uighur’s, China’s largest Muslim minority, who are torn between religion and the teachings of communism. World premiered in the Silver Wolf Competition of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam.
Park City at Midnight
Sk8 Life (International premiere)
Directed by S. Wyeth Clarkson; produced by Travesty Productions; Canadian distribution and world sales by Travesty Productions+Releasing
Eight sk8rs are brought together to make the ultimate “sk8 tape.” Crashing at the legendary “Crashpad,” they soon discover its days are numbered and band together to save it. Landing tricks, evading security guards, and wild road trips fill their days, but it will all be for nothing if they can’t save the place they call home. World premiere at the 2006 Whistler Film Festival.
Fido (US premiere)
Directed by Andrew Currie; produced by Anagram Pictures Inc.; Canadian distribution by TVA Films; US distribution and world sales by Lionsgate Films
Welcome to Willard, a small town lost in the idyllic world of the 1950s, where the sun shines every day, everybody knows their neighbour, and rotting zombies carry the mail. What begins as a small town story about a boy and his best friend becomes a biting satare about our world, the price of fear, and the rewards of risking love. Fido will rip your heart out. Fido premiered in the Toronto International Film Festival’s Canada First! Programme