Festival

Sundance Film Festival

2012

Morgan Spurlock Does It Again

Morgan Spurlock sundance film festivalMorgan Spurlock (Photo by Jeff Vespa/WireImage).

There aren’t many people who can figure out how to make a documentary featuring both Noam Chomsky and Ben Silverman, but Morgan Spurlock is one of them. In his new film, THE GREATEST MOVIE EVER SOLD, which premiered on Saturday afternoon, having already picked up distribution from Sony Pictures Classics, Spurlock sits down with both the cognitive scientist and bad boy former TV exec to talk about branding.

The film is a documentary-within-a-documentary experiment in which Spurlock sets out to make a movie about our marketing and advertising-addled culture, and yet have that culture (i.e., sponsors) pay for it. His, goal, he says, is “transparency.” But whatever the lofty mumbo-jumbo, the film is–judging by the reaction on Saturday– a huge crowd pleaser, thanks mainly to Spurlock’s lively charisma. Unlike Michael Moore, another controversial documentarian skilled in the art of making average Americans look dumb, Spurlock is a lively, personable guy that you actually want to spend time with. He also, thankfully, doesn’t take himself too seriously.

Presenting the film on Saturday, he told the audience: “Get ready for us to impregnate your brains with awesome!” After the screening, Spurlock reappeared wearing a black suit covered in sponsorship labels, chief among them POM Wonderful—one of the best scenes in the film is Spurlock pitching the POM team, including Los Angeles socialite and POM vice-chair Lynda Resnick, a POM spot touting the juice as an erection-enabler. Equally amusing is Spurlock recommending Merrill shoes to Ralph Nader.

Spurlock ideologists may be disappointed that he seems to have come out of this filmmaking endeavor totally unscathed (not so the case with Super Size Me). Although almost all of the sponsors were understandably afraid of partnering with him on a film that he would ultimately control. But everyone seems to have emerged pals. At the screening a number of brand executives were on hand, which Spurlock called down to the front of the theater good-naturedly: “Ban Deodorant’s in the house!”

Be sure to satisfy all your festival needs with the latest buzz, top stories, and celebrity interviews from Sundance Channel’s coverage of the 2011 Sundance Film Festival.