I was wondering if you could explain the difference/reason for competitive and non-competitive categories at Sundance and why you chose the latter?
It’s the Festival’s call. They decide whether or not they want to show the movie, then which category they’re going to put it in. They don’t explain their logic, but if you look at the lists, you can sort of see the thought process.
Traditionally, the Premieres have included bigger movies by established directors. There are are a few of those this year — Craig Brewer’s BLACK SNAKE MOAN, Rod Lurie’s RESURRECTING THE CHAMP — but there are also other first-time feature directors, including Sarah Polley and Jake Paltrow. Last year’s LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE was in the Premiere category, with first-time co-directors. (Worked out for them.)
Another difference is name recognition of the actors involved. If you look at the list of films in competition, you’ll see that while some of the films star people you’ve heard of, most of them don’t. Ryan Reynolds and Hope Davis are comparatively name-brand actors, and would attract some attention just because they’re in our movie. Many of the competition movies are relying on the attention and acclaim that “winning at Sundance” would bring. For us, an award would be great, but it wouldn’t be nearly the boost it was to a film like last year’s Quinceanera.
Honestly, you could have put us in either category. I was fine either way. And not having to think about awards will be one relief in what promises to be a very chaotic week.