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Sundance Diary: Doing The Party Crawl

Monday, January 22----Despite my earlier declaration to "Fuck The Parties", I fell victim to party fever as much as the next guy yesterday, but all were very pleasant affairs that were great networking opportunities and a chance to see old friends and colleagues. Things began at 11am at the Cafe Brilliant on Main Street, where the International Film Festival Summit held an informal get-together to introduce Sundance attendees to the plans to hold the first International Film Festival Summit in London on April 18, 2007. Todd Brockman and Waco Hoover of the Michael Bass Group were on hand, with exciting plans for Europe's first-of-its-kind festival pow wow. For more information, click on the website: International Film Festival Summitt.

Next stop was the 11th annual Outfest Queer Brunch, held at the Grub Steak Restaurant at Prospector Square. The restaurant was teaming with the "beautiful and buff", all there to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Outfest, the country's largest gay and lesbian film event, held in Los Angeles in July. The Brunch was hosted by here! networks, a multi media company that distributes LGBT films and television series via their cable/satellite network, film distribution company and other vehicles. The food was good, the music (disco natch) was hopping, and the atmosphere friendly.

Later in the afternoon, my tired feet took me again to Main Street to the Cafe Terigo, where Filmfinders, Without A Box and the Norwegian Film Institute held a bash to celebrate the Norwegian films screening in this year's Festival (a separate story on this to follow). Hosting the event were that dynamic duo of Sydney Levine and Peter Belsito of Filmfinders (who must have the largest frequent flyer mile accounts on the planet), Fred Kramer, COO of Without A Box, which purchased Filmfinders this past summer, and Stine Oppegaard of the Norwegian Film Institute. At a tete-a-tete with Kramer prior to the festivities revealed the ambitious plans that Without A Box has in mind to service all aspects of submission, promotion, ticketing and networking among film festival clients.

Next stop was the Sidecar Lounge further up Main Street, where the GLAAD (Gay and Lesbian Against Defamation) held a noisy but lively bash to announce the film and television nominees of their GLAAD Media Awards (separate story to follow). The Awards are given to Hollywood and independent films and television series that present a positive image of gay, lesbian and transgendered people in the media. The beautiful and buff quotient was again in evidence.

A brief stop at the FINAL DRAFT and SCRIPT MAGAZINE do at the Delta Sky Lounge and the Ray-Ban Visionary Award bash, given to actor Aaron Eckhart rounded out the evening, before heading back to the Yarrow Hotel for more film screenings (the real party, as far as I am concerned).

Sandy Mandelberger
Sundance Online Dailies Editor


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