By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT TO HOST 2013 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL AWARDS CEREMONY

For Immediate Release
January 4, 2013

Park City, UT— Sundance Institute announced today that actor, writer and director Joseph Gordon-Levitt will host the 2013 Sundance Film Festival feature film Awards Ceremony on January 26 in Park City, Utah and live-streamed at www.sundance.org/festival. The Festival takes place January 17-27 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden and Sundance, Utah.

As an actor, Gordon-Levitt has appeared in seven films at the Festival, including Mysterious Skin, Brick, and (500) Days of Summer. His directing debut, the short film, Sparks, premiered at the 2009 Festival, and his online production company hitRECord had a featured installation in New Frontier the following year as well as a live performance event at the 2012 Festival. Additionally, his feature film directorial debut, Don Jon’s Addiction, will screen in the out-of-competition Premieres section at the 2013 Festival, and Gordon-Levitt is an Artist Trustee of Sundance Institute.

John Cooper, Director of the Sundance Film Festival, said, “Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s accomplished and original artistic perspectives have contributed greatly to Sundance Institute and the independent film community. As host, he is sure to add flair to our Awards Ceremony in similarly exciting ways, and we are thrilled that he will join us in recognizing outstanding achievements at this year’s Festival.”

Awards for short films will be announced at a separate ceremony on January 22 at Park City’s Jupiter Bowl.

The Sundance Film Festival®

A program of the non-profit Sundance Institute®, the Festival has introduced global audiences to some of the most ground-breaking films of the past two decades, including sex, lies, and videotape, Maria Full of Grace, The Cove, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, An Inconvenient Truth, Precious, Trouble the Water, and Napoleon Dynamite, and through its New Frontier initiative, has showcased the cinematic works of media artists including Isaac Julien, Doug Aitken, Pierre Huyghe, Jennifer Steinkamp, and Matthew Barney. The 2013 Sundance Film Festival® sponsors include: Presenting Sponsors – HP, Acura, Sundance Channel and Chase Sapphire PreferredSM; Leadership Sponsors – DIRECTV, Entertainment Weekly, FOCUS FORWARD, a partnership between GE and CINELAN, Southwest Airlines, Sprint and YouTube; Sustaining Sponsors – Adobe, Canada Goose, Canon U.S.A., Inc., CÎROC Ultra Premium Vodka, FilterForGood®, a partnership between Brita® and Nalgene®, Hilton HHonors and Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Intel Corporation, L’Oréal Paris, Recycled Paper Greetings, Stella Artois® and Time Warner Inc. Sundance Institute recognizes critical support from the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development, and the State of Utah as Festival Host State. The support of these organizations will defray costs associated with the 10-day Festival and the nonprofit Sundance Institute’s year-round programs for independent film and theatre artists. www.sundance.org/festival

Sundance Institute

Founded by Robert Redford in 1981, Sundance Institute is a global, nonprofit cultural organization dedicated to nurturing artistic expression in film and theater, and to supporting intercultural dialogue between artists and audiences. The Institute promotes independent storytelling to unite, inform and inspire, regardless of geo-political, social, religious or cultural differences. Internationally recognized for its annual Sundance Film Festival and its artistic development programs for directors, screenwriters, producers, film composers, playwrights and theatre artists, Sundance Institute has nurtured such projects as Born into Brothels, Trouble the Water, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Amreeka, An Inconvenient Truth, Spring Awakening, Light in the Piazza and Angels in America. Join Sundance Institute on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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“I don’t really believe in guilty pleasures. I like to subscribe to Susan Sontag’s thought of no highs and lows. I think dismissing popular culture and popular films can be really dangerous because they may seem innocuous, but some are works of art and even when they’re not they can say so much about the culture that they’re reflecting. This also gets into the idea of canon. What is good and isn’t good? Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about that. Specifically, who writes these canons? Mainly, straight white guys — which basically rigs the system. So, if you have a knowledge of female filmmakers, queer filmmakers, African or Asian filmmakers, some people won’t give them the same culture capital. They’ll say, “Oh, that’s nice niche knowledge.” No, it’s not. You’re just seeing it through the prism of something white and male. Like Shonda Rhimes’ ‘Scandal.’ I love that show, but is it a guilty pleasure because it’s a soap on TV? No. I think it has incredible writing, incredible thought and characters, so we should take it seriously. That’s a long-winded answer to say, “Yes, I love Titanic.” I was 10 years old when it came out and my mom took me to see it three times. I was so obsessed with it. A big thanks to my mom who’ll never get those nine hours of her life back.”
~ Toronto Int’l Programmer and Critic Kiva Reardon

“A lot of us felt blindsided,” Van Vliet told me. In the seventies, Van Vliet was drafted out of film school by Industrial Light & Magic, where he worked on The Empire Strikes Back and Raiders of the Lost Ark. Now 62 and semi-retired, he said, “Once you get into your fifties, you’re pretty disposable.” Van Vliet was in the middle of reviewing DVD screeners before casting his Oscar votes, a process he estimated would take a hundred and twenty hours. “The Academy is essentially asking us to give them three weeks of labor, and then they’re going to take our results, put them into a ceremony, and sell it,” he said, referring to the seventy-five million dollars that the organization earns from the television broadcast. “Then they’re turning around and kicking us in the teeth.”
~ “Shakeup At The Oscars”