Dawn Keezer, director of the Pittsburgh Film Office, will send dispatches of her experiences from the annual Sundance Film Festival, which runs through Jan. 25:
Overall, Sundance was a good experience this year. I saw some great films, hosted a wonderful Steelers Party (pictured) and was able to connect with new friends and re-connect with old ones.
The "quote of the day" is a story I got from my friend Adam Siegel. Adam grew up in Churchill and currently lives in Texas. Barb Vancheri wrote about him last week when talking about the PFO Steelers party at Sundance. Adam ran into Robert Redford at the Sundance Institute, which Bob founded. (This makes Adam "a Friend of Bob".) Adam, who was decked out in Steelers-gear (as every die-hard fan should be at all times), asked Bob if he was a Steelers Fan. Bob looked at him and said, "of course, isn't everyone?" Loved that story and was happy to hear that the Steelers have a fan in Robert Redford. I guess that also makes the Steelers, "Friends of Bob!"
The final quote again comes from Robert Redford. (I decided that since it was Bob speaking I would let him have two.) He was featured in a video-clip that ran before the films at the Festival. He said, "There will always be space for new stories to be told in new ways." I think he is right and I think you will continue to see the film and entertainment industry sector continue to grow, use new technologies and prosper both world-wide and right here in southwestern PA.
I will end with a quick note about the Pittsburgh Film Office. The year of 2008 was a record-breaking one for the film industry in southwestern Pennsylvania. We had 12 films in 12 months and realized an economic impact of over $50 million. We are hoping 2009 is just as successful and you should see some filming starting to happen in the region very soon.
The PFO will be celebrating the film industry on Oscar Night and would love for everyone to join us. More details can be found at www.pghfilm.org.