It was already a banner year for Oregon film makers at Sundance with six films represented at the festival with Oregon ties. At the final day awards ceremony, 2011 became an award winning year for Oregon film makers. Portland based director Peter Richardson won the Grand Jury Prize in the U.S. Documentary Competition at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival which as Shawn Levy described it “one of the most prestigious awards that can be won by a non-fiction film anywhere in the world.” Shawn has been in Park City covering this years festival and has written many great articles about Sundance. The film has received a tremendous amount of coverage already and it is due to air on HBO. Here is more coverage from the NY Times.
Recently I made the comment that Oregon’s creative capital was at an all time high. Some questioned the validity of that statement. I think this award is yet another feather in Oregon’s cap proving the statement to be true. With the six films in Sundance, two television series produced in Oregon, four television pilots currently set in Oregon, Weiden + Kennedy named Ad Agency of 2010, a number #1 album (from The Decemberists), and a feature film on its way, we are on a hot streak! Never mind the fact that the NY Times seems to write about Oregon on a weekly basis. Let’s hope we can take advantage of this opportunity and grow the industry into something even bigger.
(update) – As I was finishing this blog post I came upon this piece from the NY Times about a film shot in Portland called “Cold Weather”. I’d never heard of the film before but it was directed by Portland native Aaron Katz. Does anyone have more info on the film? It says in the piece that Aaron now lives in Pittsburgh. Aaron – feel free to come back home to make more films.