2012

When life hands you glitter, make a Mermaid costume

When life hands you glitter, make a Mermaid costume

The bold, the beautiful, the freaky and the far-out were at it again this weekend, strutting their intricately crafted sea creature costumes at Coney Island’s annual Mermaid Parade. A party of exhibitionist families, drag queens and beauties, there’s no better place to host this nostalgic tribute to the nautical myth of the mermaid. And, well, you can’t argue with a well-executed freak show.

We've got Bill Murray's candid Cannes photos

We've got Bill Murray's candid Cannes photos

Whether he’s chauffeuring you home in a golf cart or sneaking up behind you in public, Bill Murray commands your attention. His mere presence at the 65th Festival de Cannes is no different. He is certainly the most important member of director Wes Anderson’s party posse. They’re debuting their latest collaboration, MOONRISE KINGDOM, and while the critical consensus has been golden, a Bill Murray out in the wild will always steal the show! Take a look:

Photos: Indie A-List

Photos: Indie A-List

Sundance Film Festival selections shone brightly in a madcap Oscars weekend. From lead-up nominee luncheons, the Spirit Awards to Oscars night, the indie A-list was out in full force. Check out the photos.

Indie A-List photos

Photos: Best/Worst Dressed at The Oscars

Photos: Best/Worst Dressed at The Oscars

The movie industry’s biggest night went off with a bang on Sunday. With the Academy Awards ceremony to start and rollicking after-parties going late into the night, Hollywood was at their best and worst. Check out the photos.

Oscars: Best/Worst Dressed photos

2012 Sundance Film Festival announces Jury Prizes in short filmmaking

2012 Sundance Film Festival announces Jury Prizes in short filmmaking

Sundance Institute this evening announced the jury prizes and honorable mentions in short filmmaking at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. The awards were presented at a ceremony in Park City, Utah. These award recipients will also be honored at the Festival’s Awards Ceremony, hosted by Parker Posey on Saturday, January 28 at 7:00 p.m. MT and live streamed at www.sundance.org/live.

Sheldon Candis and Michael Rainey Jr. bring the LUV & the photos

Sheldon Candis and Michael Rainey Jr. bring the LUV & the photos

Aamer Haleem interviews LUV director Sheldon Candis and newcomer Michael Rainey for Festival Insider. Click below for the full gallery!

Photos: Triple threat Mark Webber mourns THE END OF LOVE

Photos: Triple threat Mark Webber mourns THE END OF LOVE

Host Aamer Haleem interviews director Mark Webber of THE END OF LOVE for Festival Insider. Click below for the full gallery!

BONES BRIGADE: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY director Stacy Peralta kickflips into Sundance Channel HQ

BONES BRIGADE: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY director Stacy Peralta kickflips into Sundance Channel HQ

The original Z-Boy Stacy Peralta joined us to talk about BONES BRIGADE: AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY. Check out all of the photos and learn more about the film:

Photos: Joe Berlinger takes Sundance Channel UNDER AFRICAN SKIES

Photos: Joe Berlinger takes Sundance Channel UNDER AFRICAN SKIES

Director Joe Berlinger has covered the West Memphis Three, Metallica and the oil industry. For his latest film, UNDER AFRICAN SKIES, he teemed up with Paul Simon to revisit the iconic album GRACELAND. Don’t miss the photos in our gallery: UNDER AFRICAN SKIES

The SLEEPWALK WITH ME cast quietly shuffles into Sundance Channel HQ – With Photos!

The SLEEPWALK WITH ME cast quietly shuffles into Sundance Channel HQ – With Photos!

Aamer Haleem interviews Carol Kane, Cristin Milioti, Marc Moran and director Mike Birbiglia of SLEEPWALK WITH ME for Festival Insider. Check out our full gallery.

FILLY BROWN – Hustlers & flow in the story of rising rap artist

FILLY BROWN – Hustlers & flow in the story of rising rap artist

The Sundance Film Festival is one of the world’s premiere venues for independent artists. If you’ve got a film playing Sundance, that means you had something to say and you begged, borrowed, and stole in order to say it. I suspect that’s a big reason why movies about independent artists — not just filmmakers, but painters, writers, and especially musicians — have done so well over the years in Park City. If you’re at Sundance, odds are you understand that story. Hell, if you’re at Sundance, you probably are that story.

Indie cred: The cast of Parks and Recreation

Indie cred: The cast of Parks and Recreation

So many Parks and Recreation cast members have films at Sundance ’12 you’d think the Pawnee Parks Department was holding a winter company retreat in Park City. Ann, April, Ben, and the great Ron Swanson all appear in Sundance selections this January, though if you bump into any of them walking down Main Street they probably would appreciate it if you referred to them by their real names.

SAVE THE DATE – Mark your calendars for a Sundance premiere with Lizzy Caplan and Alison Brie

SAVE THE DATE – Mark your calendars for a Sundance premiere with Lizzy Caplan and Alison Brie

Life is full of weird synchronicities. As I sat down to write this preview of the Sundance ’12 U.S. Dramatic Competition film SAVE THE DATE, I popped on Pickin’ Up the Pieces by Fitz and the Tantrums. Toes tapping as I researched, I looked up SAVE THE DATE director Michael Mohan. His first feature, ONE TOO MANY MORNINGS, premiered at Sundance in 2010. In intervening years he made a short film, EX-SEX, and a bunch of music videos for bands including — you guessed it — Fitz and the Tantrums. What’s that? You won’t believe me until you see the video embedded in this post right now? Well, okay.

Film intelligence: An online home for Sundance films and more

Film intelligence: An online home for Sundance films and more

Every week there are dozens of film news stories. Every week, we read them all and bring you the five most important ones in the single most important blog post you’ll ever read (today [at this moment]).

1. Sundance Alumni Head Upstream for Distribution

Thousands of movies have premiered at the Sundance Film Festival over the years, but only a comparative handful of those movies ever find theatrical distribution. Now a new partnership between the Sundance Institute and film distributor New Video will offer hope to festival filmmakers whose work has fallen through the cracks of the studio system. Soon any director that’s ever played Park City will have the opportunity to release his or her film through Sundance/New Video onto one (or all) of six web portals: Amazon, Hulu, Netflix, iTunes, YouTube and SundanceNOW. Let the reconsideration of forgotten 90s indie gems begin. [The New York Times]

Woody Guthrie's New Year's resolutions

Woody Guthrie's New Year's resolutions

What are your resolutions for 2012? Please, something other than “go to the gym” because, let’s not kid ourselves: we know that’s not going to happen. I recommend adding “regularly read SUNfiltered” to your resolution list. If still looking for an inspiration for resolutions, get inspired by this timely and brilliantly whimsical list of 33 new year’s resolutions set by folk singer Woody Guthrie in 1942 or as it should be called “life rules” because it’s a pretty good guideline for living a virtuous (yet fun) life, especially number 26: Dance better. Overall, there’s also a certain sense of prudence and levelheadedness to Guthrie’s goals that recalls this sensible to-do list written by Johnny Cash (My favorite: 2. Kiss June), which I blogged about here earlier.

One to watch at Sundance: Lizzy Caplan

One to watch at Sundance: Lizzy Caplan

She’s been working steadily in film and television since the early aughts, but Party Down star Lizzy Caplan first caught my eye in director Matt Reeves’ 2008 film CLOVERFIELD. She played Marlena, the girl who gets bitten by one of the weird bug aliens and then — SPOILER ALERT! — explodes. 2012 looks to be the year Caplan’s career does likewise, with a bunch of high profile starring roles including two at this month’s Sundance Film Festival.

Tim and Eric bring the drama to Sundance with THE COMEDY

Tim and Eric bring the drama to Sundance with THE COMEDY

If Las Vegas was taking bets on the breakout stars of the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, the short odds would belong to Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim. The perennial cult favorites from the subversive Cartoon Network series Tim and Eric’s Awesome Show, Great Job! (which is so subversive, it’s — GASP!! — not even a cartoon) head to Park City this month with two brand new projects in tow. They wrote, directed, and starred in TIM AND ERIC’S BILLION DOLLAR MOVIE, which is part of this year’s Midnight slate, and they both appear in Rick Alverson’s competition film THE COMEDY.

It's the end of the Universe as we know it — Your 2012 cultural horoscope

It's the end of the Universe as we know it — Your 2012 cultural horoscope

2011 may have been insane, but 2012 is shaping up to be downright frenetic. With all the buzz around the Mayan calendar, and our obsession, once again, with the end of the world in mind, here is a brief overview of what to expect in 2012 (if we get through it, that is). Not since the cultural revolution and the swinging 60’s have the planets above been in such a similar positioning—remember that whole age of Aquarius ditty? Assuming we don’t engage in senseless nuclear warfare with our enemy du jour, 2012 is looking to be like one for the books.

Aries:
As the year kicks off, the biggest influence for Aries comes courtesy of the planet of change, Uranus. This is looking to be an exciting year as long as you’re willing to roll with the punches. That laissez faire act you have been holding on to is going to be tested. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to learn to sit with the anxious energy you’re scheduled to feel the entire year. Try not to fill your time with your normal stockpile of chores and activities. Reflect on who you are and the way you choose to express your voice. This is an excellent time to revisit old projects you thought had been developed to the hilt. It seems there is a chance to breathe new life into it, just like Jennifer Saunders has in reviving the Absolutely Fabulous franchise into a movie. We have to admit the world is a lot more colorful with Patsy and Edina back in play. Go with the flow this year. You’ll thank us.

Vimeo Festival returns with your best shot at a 2012 festival premiere

Vimeo Festival returns with your best shot at a 2012 festival premiere

The 2012 Vimeo Festival + Awards: Submissions now open! from Vimeo Festival + Awards on Vimeo.

Face it, you were not nominated for a Golden Globe and your chances for an Oscar don’t look good, either. It’s ok, though… there is a film award you can still win. Look no further than the Vimeo Film Festival and Awards.

A Republican primary style guide

A Republican primary style guide

Art plays an important role in society. It is a cultural mirror, a telling portrayal of some of our more irrational or eccentric tendencies. We appreciate the perspective it provides, but it’s always more entertaining when life imitates art, as was the case with Rick Perry’s latest presidential commercial. Tricky Ricky asserts that openly gay military personnel are the latest abuse of separation of church and state. Meanwhile, he’s dressed as Ennis Del Mar, America’s tragic man crush. Guess Rick went to the loo during the thirty-second guy on guy love scene in Brokeback Mountain. What else could explain his sartorial choice? No matter, the look works for him. Here’s a quick style guide for a few of the other 2012 Republican contenders. Lights, camera, and all that jazz.

Sundance Film Festival Announces Films in Spotlight, Park City at Midnight, Next & New Frontier

Sundance Film Festival Announces Films in Spotlight, Park City at Midnight, Next & New Frontier

Sundance Institute announced today the films selected to screen in the 2012 Sundance Film Festival out-of-competition sections Spotlight, Park City at Midnight, NEXT and New Frontier. The Festival takes place from January 19 through 29 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah. The complete list of films is available at www.sundance.org/festival.