Sundance 2019: Day 12

Director of Programming James McNally is attending this year’s Sundance Film Festival from January 22nd to February 3rd.

Festival Day 10

I slept very late today since I wasn’t going to be seeing any films. We were advised to make ourselves available for the whole day to prepare for the Awards Ceremony but Bobby told me I wasn’t really needed in the office until 3:30pm. I went in for 12:30pm just to be on the safe side, but things were very quiet.

We all piled into four cars around 4:00pm and headed for the Basin Amphitheatre in Kimball Junction, the site of the awards ceremony ever since I started volunteering in 2015. There wasn’t a lot for me to do, just be ready to greet filmmakers at the entrance.

About half of our teams had already gone home, but I was able to greet filmmakers from a few of our films, including Adalmadrina, Birds in the Earth, Fast Horse, Docking, Muteum, Those Bad Things, and a few more.

The only other job I had was to clear chairs after the awards were finished around 9:15pm, and then we were free to enjoy the party. I met up with my friend Mike Lane from Toronto, and hung out a bit with him, and with Bobby, and with a few of my other Artist Relations colleagues, but I was ready to go home by about 12:30am. It had started to snow again and I didn’t want to get caught in a snowstorm, especially when everyone else was leaving.

Tomorrow I need to be out of my lodging by 10:00am and I haven’t even packed yet. I might try to see some of the award winners, which screen at several venues tomorrow, but I have a shuttle ride back to Salt Lake City at either 3:00pm or 6:00pm, depending on which one has room.

I had fun this year, but the general consensus is that the films weren’t as strong as in 2018, and overall I just didn’t connect with as many people. I’m still interested in coming back next year, and I’m sure upon reflection I’ll find lots to love about Sundance 2019.