The 30th Sundance Film Festival has kicked off in the ski resort of Park City, Utah.
At the opening press conference, the festival’s founder Robert Redford, who had been hotly tipped for an Oscar for “All is Lost”, could not avoid questions about why he wasn’t nominated.
“Hollywood is a business and so when these films go to be voted on, usually they’re heavily dependent on campaigns that the distributors provide. There’s a lot of campaigning that goes on and it can get very political, but that’s OK because it is a business. In our case, I think, we suffered from little to no distribution. I don’t feel ‘Would it have been wonderful to be nominated’, of course, but I’m not disturbed by it or upset by it because of what I just said. It is a business and we couldn’t conform to that,” said Redford.
Far from the glitz, glamour and cash of Hollywood, Sundance aims at presenting a more independent programme.
One of the festival’s most eagerly awaited film’s is “The Better Angels”, produced by Terrence Malick and starring German actress Diane Kruger.
This black and white biopic tells the story of Abraham Lincoln’s childhood in the wilderness of Indiana and the hardships that shaped him into becoming American president.
Diane Kruger plays young Abe’s stepmother.
“What I loved about the script was that, yes, it’s about Abe Lincoln, but it could be about any child who was different, who was curious and who met an adult – in this case Sarah Lincoln whom I play – who encouraged him to go to school, who encouraged his talent. And I loved the message that no matter where you’re from or how poor you are, you can be a great man, you can change the world,” she said.
Written and directed by Malick’s longtime collaborator A.J. Edwards, ‘The Better Angels’ is scheduled to screen in the Panorama section at next month’s Berlinale.
The Sundance Film Festival runs until 26 January.