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The Sundance Diaries: Ready For Film Camp

Posted: 01/30/2012 9:37 am

This is one in a series of posts for HuffPost Culture's "The Sundance Diaries," a month-long multimedia diary kept by the international filmmakers whose 64 short films were selected for the 2012 Sundance Film Festival.

Jan. 19, 2012

Soon, I will be heading to the airport to fly off Sundance. Yes, the festival started Thursday the 19th, but I had to teach my students After Effects and show them animations made from old films and appropriated images today. Class just ended, and now I'm typing one last post before I start packing. Currently it's 70 degrees and muggy here in Texas. Tomorrow, I'll be 8000 ft up a mountain and the weather will be somewhere in the 20s.

I have an open suitcase on the floor and a pile of thermals and wool socks and boots and a parka dug out of the back of my closet nearby. There is a wardrobe transformation that is unique to Sundance. All attendees don the required gear to be in cold weather and endure a marathon of films from 9 AM to 2 AM daily. Everyone is puffy with layers, trudging up and down Main Street, riding the shuttles around, trying to score tickets to movies. No one looks great, but everyone looks warm, which is the point. We're here to see some films and are equipped with the gear needed to do so. Additionally, into the suitcase goes postcards announcing my film's screenings and DVD screeners to share. However, one special item is coming with me this year and it's a custom made hat.

My boyfriend's mother knit my boyfriend and I hats for Sundance this year. I'm not sure if she is aware, but it's the most perfect hat I've ever worn. It fits magnificently; it's warm and soft. Hats have always been a point of contention for me, never fitting quite right, feeling scratchy, and not being protective enough. This one is top shelf material.

And with this exceptional item in tow, I'm ready to depart for film camp, which is how I fondly think of Sundance. Where else can you watch movies all day long and never leave the cinema universe? Over each meal, on every shuttle, at all the parties, people are talking about all the films they have been watching or hope to see.

My film is playing in the Midnight Movie category this year, so all my screenings will be at the end of the day. Sundance does a fantastic job of pairing short films with features for a lot of the screenings. I'm excited to be screening with Nicholas McCarthy's The Pact, a family centric ghost story that is rooted in adolescence terror. Our first screening is Friday night...at midnight!

Is it time to Sundance yet?

WATCH a preview for "Once It Started It Could Not End Otherwise":