“Bad Kids,” “Newtown” among Sundance doc lab selections

The Sundance Institute has unveiled its selection of eight doc projects for its forthcoming Documentary Edit and Story Labs, taking place in June and July.
June 16, 2015

The Sundance Institute has unveiled a selection of eight doc projects for its forthcoming Documentary Edit and Story Labs, to be held in June and July.

The two labs – running June 19-27 and July 3-11 at the Sundance Resort in Utah – showcase director and editor teams in the later stages of post-production alongside established doc filmmakers as part of the Institute’s yearly 24 residential labs that aim to unearth and nurture developing indie artists in film and theater.

Editors serving as creative advisers for the June session include Marshall Curry (Point and Shoot), Ra’anan Alexandrowicz (The Law In These Parts), Tom Haneke (Where Soldiers Come From), Mary Lampson (Harlan County USA), Geoffrey Richman (Racing Extinction) and Jean Tsien (Shut Up and Sing).

Meanwhile, the week-long July session will feature a raft of editors serving as creative advisers such as Robb Moss (Containment), Kate Amend (The Case Against 8), Richard Hankin (God Loves Uganda), Shannon Kennedy (Words of Witness), Victor Livingston (The Queen of Versailles) and Jeff Malmberg (Marwencol).

The eight projects chosen for the labs are The Bad Kids (directors: Keith Fulton and Lou Pepe; editor: Jacob Bricca), centering on at-risk students in a remote high school in the Mojave Desert; Brick (directors: Jessica Dimmock and Christopher LaMarca; editor: Fiona Otway), revealing the coming out experiences of middle-aged to senior trans women; Freedom Fighters (director: Jamie Meltzer, editor: Jeff Gilbert), about a new detective agency in Dallas, Tex. run by ex-cons; Newtown (director: Kim Snyder; editor: Gabriel Rhodes), exploring the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shootings that left 26 dead; and Beitar (director Maya Zinshtein, Noam Amit), on the transfer deal of two Muslim soccer players to Israel’s Beitar Jerusalem F.C. in January 2013.

The remaining doc projects include Memories of a Penitent Heart (director: Cecilia Aldarondo; editor: Hannah Buck), on a niece’s search for her gay uncle’s long-lost partner; The Peacemaker (director: James Demo; editor: Erin Casper), following an international peacemaker struggling to find peace himself; and The Lovers and the Despot (directors: Ross Adam and Rob Cannan; editor: Jim Hession), regarding the decline of a career and marriage between a celebrity director and an actress, and the story of their subsequent kidnapping by North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il.

“The work of this year’s fellows is a reflection of some of the richness and purpose to be found in contemporary non-fiction storytelling,” said Tabitha Jackson, director of the Documentary Film Program, in a statement. “We are excited not just about the projects, but also about the alchemy that will happen on the mountain when these directors and editors… come together to form the creative connections that will continue to inspire them in their brave and challenging work.”

Recent Documentary Edit and Story Lab projects include (T)ERROR, The Queen of VersaillesRich HillThe Kill TeamGideons Army and The Genius of Marian.

About The Author