HERE! @ SUNDANCE

TUESDAY JANUARY 25, 2005
Report 6:  Rock Out

We scrambled out of bed and raced down to a 9:30am screening of STRANGERS WITH CANDY, a feature film prequel companion to the cult television hit of the same name. The cast and writers from the original series are reunited for this work, which begins when our hero, 46-year-old Jerri Blank (Amy Sedaris), emerges from her long prison term to return to high school. The film is a showcase for the incomparable comic genius of Sedaris and her costars and writers Paul Dinello (who also directed) and Stephen Colbert (THE DAILY SHOW). Later we saw Sedaris being followed around by a press crew shooting a story. A foreign crew that spotted the entourage became very excited when they saw her. Unfortunately they thought they had spotted Mary Cheney, not Sedaris. Such is Sundance mania…

After the screening, we made our way to the Queer Lounge for a panel on the present state of Gay Television. here! Executive Vice President Mark Reinhart spoke about the network’s history, and plans for the future. The panel was moderated by Mike Goodridge, the Los Angeles editor of Screen International, and was very informative for indie lgbt artists to hear about other places that their work can be seen.


Screen International's Mike Goodridge and here! EVP Mark Reinhart.

Later that afternoon, we attended the “Variety: Ten Directors to Watch” party at the beautiful Stein-Eriksen Lodge. The annual event is thrown each year to spotlight 10 directors that speak with fresh voices and innovative storytelling styles. The bash drew celebrities like Kyle MacLachlan and Jeremy Sisto, as well as Sony Picture Classics’ Tom Bernard, the Kohner Agency’s Stephen Moore, HBO’s Mark Taylor, and Lion’s Gate’s Mark Amin.

After the Variety event, we returned to the here! headquarters and had a lovely dinner with all the folks from Wolfe Video. We were celebrating their recent GLAAD Media Award nominations for best film. Their film BROTHER TO BROTHER has received numerous accolades over the past year and looks to be a strong contender to win the award in the limited release film category. Over a fab spread of fine cheese, fine wine, and pasta with homemade tomato sauce, we chatted and relaxed with some of the nicest people at Sundance.

We capped the evening with a visit to the Scissor Sisters show at local institution Club Suede. The club was filled with fans, queer and straight, getting down on the dance floor before the show had even started. Scissor Sisters hail from New York City, and have toured around the world in support of their eponymous debut record. The band played a sweaty, fierce show with hot post-disco beats, as lead singer Jake Shears impressed the crowd with his energy and vocal ability. The fact that he is also a hottie is gravy on an amazing vibe that the band created. The whole band, featuring Shears, Paddy Boom, Ana Matronic, Babydaddy, and Del Marquis, gave an incredible performance, and were brought back for an encore by the appreciative audience. Ana Matronic also showed the group how to have a good time without attitude. At one point during the crowded show someone started pushing another audience member. She stopped the show to make sure that no one was going to get hurt and let the revelers know that there wasn’t any room for fighting at SS’s show. Ruling the show with an iron fist in velvet glove made us love her even more. The show was sponsored by TLA Releasing and Queer Lounge. Hats off to Lewis Tice and Ellen Huang for bringing a killer show to the quiet mountain town of Park City, Utah.


Scissor Sisters.

here!’s Meredith Kadlec hangs out with cute Queer Lounge volunteers at the Scissor Sisters VIP afterparty.

After the show, we retired to the VIP room to hang out with the band and bond with fellow fans. Film fest organizers, including half the Sundance Press office (including our buddy Levi Elder), and Frameline’s Michael Lumpkin and Jennifer Morris, were amongst the crowd of VIP’s in attendance. In addition, John Cameron Mitchell (HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH) and Alan Cumming (REEFER MADNESS) were also spotted chatting with the band.
. . .

Look out for new columns appearing every day of the festival, along with exclusive here! @ Sundance videos. Stay tuned right here! for all the news, gossip and queer happenings from Sundance. 

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