Our coverage of this year’s Sundance Film Festival begins with a grim fantasy about a terrorist attack on Los Angeles and ends with a breezy black comedy about the tobacco industry, proving that this year’s festival slate was nothing if not diverse. Though the exuberance that greeted the comedy Little Miss Sunshine (shot by Tim Suhrstedt, ASC) gave this year’s festival a family-friendly vibe, there was plenty of adult material to go around. Perhaps inevitably, the war in Iraq was the subject or subtext of several projects, and one of these, the documentary Iraq in Fragments, won three major awards: cinematography, directing and editing.
Judging the festival’s Dramatic Competition were cinematographer Nancy Schreiber, ASC; actor Terrence Howard; and directors Alan Rudolph, Miguel Arteta and Audrey Wells. The Documentary Competition jury comprised film editor Joe Bini; directors Alexander Payne, Andrew Jarecki and Zana Briski; and producer Heather Rae.Cinematographers Tom Richmond and James Longley won their first Sundance Awards for Excellence in Cinematography this year, Richmond for the drama Right at Your Door, and Longley for the documentary Iraq in Fragments (which he also directed and co-edited). AC covers these and other projects in the pages that follow.