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Sundance 2010 lineup

12.03.2009
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With the new year just around the corner comes with it the first major film festival of the year! And this time around, the news is focused on the apparent dourness of this year's lineup compared to last, calling out things such as the collapse of the indie distribution system, a f*cked economy, and two wars as major factors that have given festival organizers and filmmakers the chance to go all out and "follow their probing passions, however dark."

First-time Festival Director John Cooper states: "In general, we wanted to put industry off to the side, put marketability of films off to the side, and really keep our focus on artistic excellence and originality. That's where we're going to best serve the filmmaking community."

The Sundance Film Festival runs January 21-31 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden, and Sundance, Utah. Below is a listing of the U.S. Drama films in competition. CLICK HERE for the complete lineup which also includes U.S. Documentary, World Cinema Documentary, and World Cinema Narrative.

Blue Valentine (Director: Derek Cianfrance; screenwriters: Derek Cianfrance, Cami Delavigne, Joey Curtis). A portrait of an American marriage over time. Cast: Ryan Gosling, Michelle Williams, Mike Vogel, John Doman.

Douchebag (Director: Drake Doremus; screenwriters: Lindsay Stidham, Drake Doremus, Jonathan Schwartz, Andrew Dickler). On the verge of getting married, Sam insists he escort his younger brother, Tom, on a wild goose chase to find Tom's fifth grade girlfriend. Cast: Andrew Dickler, Ben York Jones, Marguerite Moreau, Nicole Vicius, Amy Ferguson, Wendi McClendon-Covey.

The Dry Land (Director-screenwriter: Ryan Piers Williams). A U.S. soldier returning home from war struggles to reconcile his experiences abroad with the life he left in Texas. Cast: America Ferrera, Wilmer Valderrama, Ethan Suplee, June Diane Raphael, Melissa Leo.

happythankyoumoreplease (Director-screenwriter: Josh Radnor). Six New Yorkers negotiate love, friendship and gratitude at a time when they're too old to be precocious and not ready to be adults. Cast: Malin Akerman, Josh Radnor, Kate Mara, Zoe Kazan, Tony Hale, Pablo Schreiber, Michael Algieri.

Hesher (Director: Spencer Susser; screenwriters: Spencer Susser, David Michod). A mysterious, anarchical trickster descends on the lives of a family struggling to deal with a painful loss. Cast: Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Natalie Portman, Rainn Wilson, Devin Brochu, Piper Laurie, John Carroll Lynch.

Holy Rollers (Director: Kevin Tyler Asch; screenwriter: Antonio Macia). A young Hasidic man, seduced by money, power and opportunity, becomes an international Ecstasy smuggler. Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Justin Bartha, Danny A. Abeckaser, Ari Graynor, Jason Fuchs.

Howl (Directors-screenwriters: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman). A nonfiction drama about young Allen Ginsberg finding his voice, the creation of his groundbreaking poem and the landmark obscenity trial that followed. Cast: James Franco, David Strathairn, Jon Hamm, Mary-Louise Parker, Jeff Daniels.

The Imperialists are Still Alive! (Director-screenwriter: Zeina Durra). Juggling the abduction of her childhood sweetheart as well as a blooming love affair, a French Manhattanite makes her way as an artist in a hostile world. Cast: Elodie Bouchez, Jose Maria de Tavira, Karim Saleh Karolina Muller, Marianna Kulukundis, Rita Ackerman.

Lovers of Hate (Director-screenwriter: Bryan Poyser). The shaky reunion of estranged brothers takes a turn for the worse when the woman they both love chooses one over the other. Cast: Chris Doubek, Heather Kafka, Alex Karpovsky, Zach Green.

Night Catches Us (Director-screenwriter: Tanya Hamilton). In 1978, political and emotional forces are set in motion when a young man returns to the race-torn Philadelphia neighborhood where he came of age during the Black Power movement. Cast: Anthony Mackie, Kerry Washington, Jamie Hector, Wendell Pierce, Jamara Griffin.

Obselidia (Director-screenwriter: Diane Bell). A lonely librarian believes love is obsolete until a road trip to Death Valley with a beguiling cinema projectionist teaches him otherwise. Cast: Gaynor Howe, Michael Piccirilli, Frank Hoyt Taylor.

Skateland (Director: Anthony Burns; screenwriters: Anthony Burns, Brandon Freeman, Heath Freeman). In the early 1980s in small-town Texas, dramatic events force a 19-year-old skating-rink manager to look at his life in a new way. Cast: Shiloh Fernandez, A.J. Buckley, Ashley Greene, Brett Cullen, Ellen Hollman, Heath Freeman.

Sympathy for Delicious (Director: Mark Ruffalo; screenwriter: Christopher Thornton). A newly paralyzed DJ gets more than he bargained for when he seeks out the world of faith healing. Cast: Orlando Bloom, Mark Ruffalo, Juliette Lewis, Laura Linney, John Carroll Lynch.

3 Backyards (Director-screenwriter: Eric Mendelsohn). A quiet suburban town becomes an intense emotional terrain for three residents over the course of one curious autumn day. Cast: Embeth Davidtz, Edie Falco, Elias Koteas, Rachel Resheff, Kathryn Erbe, Danai Gurira.

Welcome to the Rileys (Director: Jake Scott; screenwriter: Ken Hixon). On a business trip to New Orleans, a damaged man seeks salvation by caring for a wayward young woman. Cast: James Gandolfini, Kristen Stewart, Melissa Leo.

Winter's Bone (Director: Debra Granik; screenwriters: Debra Granik, Anne Rosellini). An unflinching Ozark Mountain girl hacks through dangerous social terrain as she hunts down her drug-dealing father. Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, John Hawkes, Lauren Sweetser, Kevin Breznahan, Isaiah Stone.
Extra Tidbit: Mark Ruffalo is making his directorial debut with SYMPATHY FOR DELICIOUS, starring Orlando Bloom, Juliette Lewis and Laura Linney in a story about a paralyzed DJ exploring the world of faith healing.

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10:46PM on 12/03/2009
I'm looking forward to [link]
I'm looking forward to [link]
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9:52AM on 12/03/2009

Wait a Sec Here...

""In general, we wanted to put industry off to the side, put marketability of films off to the side, and really keep our focus on artistic excellence and originality. That's where we're going to best serve the filmmaking community."

Ummmm.... correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that what you're supposed to be doing in the first fucking place???
""In general, we wanted to put industry off to the side, put marketability of films off to the side, and really keep our focus on artistic excellence and originality. That's where we're going to best serve the filmmaking community."

Ummmm.... correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that what you're supposed to be doing in the first fucking place???
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3:08PM on 12/03/2009
don't get snippy, smiert. if you're at all familiar with american film, you know there's a gripping bureaucratic hand on the majority of films.

it may sound like faux avant-garde advertising, but perhaps enough was enough for some of these filmmakers and they funded their own shit.
don't get snippy, smiert. if you're at all familiar with american film, you know there's a gripping bureaucratic hand on the majority of films.

it may sound like faux avant-garde advertising, but perhaps enough was enough for some of these filmmakers and they funded their own shit.
8:24AM on 12/04/2009
"don't get snippy"

How about you not tell me what to do. It makes me not wanna listen to you...
"don't get snippy"

How about you not tell me what to do. It makes me not wanna listen to you...
9:32AM on 12/03/2009

Some interesting films here

I'm especially excited to hear about HOWL. NIGHT CATCHES US, THE DRY LAND, and SYMPATHY FOR DELICIOUS also sound like they'd be worth a look.

I'm especially excited to hear about HOWL. NIGHT CATCHES US, THE DRY LAND, and SYMPATHY FOR DELICIOUS also sound like they'd be worth a look.

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9:20AM on 12/03/2009

Radnor a director?

Pretty big HIMYM fan, curious to see how this turns out...
Pretty big HIMYM fan, curious to see how this turns out...
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8:46AM on 12/03/2009
Damn, I wish I could go. Some of those sound awesome!
Damn, I wish I could go. Some of those sound awesome!
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8:54AM on 12/03/2009
Damn you have a good avatar. Kudos!
Damn you have a good avatar. Kudos!
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