Festival

Sundance Film Festival

2012

Honda Hosts MARY & MAX Screening

Honda's Special Screening of MARY AND MAX
Honda’s Special Screening of MARY AND MAX

As car companies go, Honda is among the most innovative, so it only makes sense that they’d partner with the Sundance Channel for a screening of the festival’s opening night premiere of MARY & MAX, a claymation film by Academy Award-winner Adam Elliot which is itself an innovative work.

Festival director Geoffrey Gilmore, perhaps in response to those who bemoan the branding frenzy at Sundance, said it’s important to recognize companies like Honda, the presenting sponsor of the festival (slogan: “The Power of Dreams”), for funding artistic outlets such as Sundance.

“You guys,” he said to the Honda employees in attendance at the Holiday Village Theater, “are making a choice to support the arts.”

A short film funded by Honda, MOBILITY 2088, preceded the screening and featured Honda employees and filmmakers responding to the question: What will mobility be like in 80 years? The short is semi-promotional, of course, but also self-aware enough to include filmmaker Joe Johnson saying, “I think the internal combustion engine was a bad idea from the start.” The video also pokes fun at itself: When a woman wonders, “What if we could unlock gravity?”, Christopher Guest (BEST IN SHOW) says, “I think that’s within a few weeks. I would say that’s going to happen fast—and people being invisible.”

Making a car is tedious. So was the filming of MARY & MAX, but it was worth it. The film is sad at times, but never depressing, and light at times, but never overly cute—by no means a kids’ movie, no matter what the Berlin Film Festival thinks (Elliot says the festival has placed his film in the children’s film competition).

Click here to follow Elliot to the film’s premiere on opening night.