Slamdance Film Festival Unveils 2014 Competition Lineup


The slate of directorial debuts, all produced for under $1 million, will once again roll out alongside Sundance this January.

The 2014 Slamdance Film Festival, running from Jan. 17th - 23rd, 2014 in Park City, Utah, has announced 18 feature films for its 20th season. The showcase includes 10 narrative and 8 documentary films, including 11 World Premieres, 4 North American, and 1 U.S. Premiere, plucked from over 5,000 submissions.

Catering to smaller films than then the Sundance Film Festival, which runs concurrently with Sundance in Park City, Slamdance's selections are all feature film directorial debuts with budgets of less than $1 million and without US distribution.

"The 2014 Feature Competition bristles with raw talent and innovative filmmaking,” Peter Baxter, Slamdance President and Co- Founder, said in a statement. “As an organization run by filmmakers for filmmakers, we couldn't imagine a truer way of representing the first 20 years and beginning our next.”

Below are the competition films in both narrative and documentary categories:


Copenhagen (USA, Canada, Denmark) World Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Mark Raso

A charming scoundrel visiting the city of his father's birth, William is drawn to his impromptu guide Effy - wise, spontaneous, and half his age.

Cast: Gethin Anthony, Frederikke Dahl Hansen, Sebastian Armesto, Tamzin Merchant

Goldberg & Eisenberg (Israel)

Director & Screenwriter: Oren Carmi

A lonely computer programmer finds his life disrupted by a boorish thug who becomes dangerously obsessed in this darkly absurd drama.

Cast: Yitzhak Laor, Yahav Gal, Roni Dotan

I Play With The Phrase Each Other (USA) North American Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Jay Alvarez

Young city dwellers with lyrical musings and a sliding sense of entitlement hold court in this film comprised entirely of cell phone conversations.

Cast: Jay Alvarez, Will Hand, Megan Kopp, Alexander Fraser

I Put A Hit On You (Canada) World Premiere

Directors & Screenwriters: Dane Clark, Linsey Stewart

A broken-hearted woman teams up with her ex-boyfriend to try and stop the hitman she accidentally hired to kill him.

Cast: Aaron Ashmore, Sara Canning

My Blind Heart (Austria) North American Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Peter Brunner

Suffering from an incurable disease, a young man rebels against his body and the expectations forced upon him in this black and white expressionist film.

Cast: Christos Haas, Jana McKinnon, Susanne Lothar, Robert Schmiedt, Georg Friedrich

The Republic of Rick (USA) World Premiere

Director: Mario Kyprianou; Screenwriters: Mario Kyprianou, Becky Leigh

In this politic satire, a self-proclaimed President of the Republic of Texas rallies to lead a paranoid militia for Texas's independence in the late 1990s.

Cast: Dave Abed, Angie Gregory, Lori Jean Wilson

Rezeta (Mexico) US Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Fernando Frias de la Parra

A jet-setting model leads a freewheeling and spontaneous life in Mexico City that starts to change when she falls in love with an unexpected young artist.

Cast: Rezeta Veliu, Roger Mendoza, Paulina Davila, Sebastian Cordova

Rover (USA) World Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Tony Blahd

A dispirited cult awaits the sign to off themselves when their leader fakes a prophecy instructing them to make a movie and share their story with the world.

Cast: Liam Torres, Jonathan Randell Silver, Steve Siddell, Natalie Thomas

The Sublime and Beautiful (USA) World Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Blake Robbins

David and Kelly descend into a complicated hell of grief but they take very different paths to make things right after losing their children to a drunk driver.

Cast: Blake Robbins, Laura Kirk, Matthew Del Negro, Armin Shimerman

Wizard's Way (UK) North American Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Metal Man

A champion online fantasy video game player, his encouraging best friend, and two ambitious would-be filmmakers who decide to capture it all for posterity.

Cast: Chris Killen, Joe Stretch, Kristian Scott, Socrates Adams-Florou, Sadie Frost


Elliot (Canada) World Premiere

Directors & Screenwriters: Matthew Bauckman, Jaret Belliveau

The bizarre story of Elliot Scott, his supportive partner Linda Lum, and their cast and crew of outrageous dreamers all striving to achieve success.

Cast: Elliot Scott, Blake Zwicker, Linda Lum

Glena (USA) World Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Allan Luebke

Glena Avila is a single mother in her 30's who is fighting to become a professional Mixed Martial Artist.

Cast: Glena Avila, Stormy Back, Ron Andersen

Huntington's Dance (USA) World Premiere

Director: Chris Furbee

Told through 20 years of home movie footage, Huntington's Dance is a personal and devastatingly raw look at how hereditary disease can shatter a family and a future.

Cast: Chris Furbee, Rosemary Shockey, Gene Furbee

Kidnapped For Christ (USA, Dominican Republic) World Premiere

Director: Kate S. Logan; Screenwriters: Yada Zamora, Kate S. Logan

The personal stories of American teenagers who are taken from their homes and sent to an Evangelical Christian reform school located in The Dominican Republic.

Cast: David Wernsman, Tai Matheiu, Elizabeth Engle

Little Hope Was Arson (USA)

Director: Theo Love

January 2010: In the buckle of the Bible Belt, 10 churches burn to the ground igniting the largest criminal investigation in East Texas history.

Skanks (USA) World Premiere

Director: David McMahon

A community theatre in Birmingham, Alabama mounts a gender-bending new musical titled "Skanks In A One Horse Town."

Sometimes I Dream I'm Flying (Poland) North American Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Aneta Popiel-Machnicka

The poignant story of a young dancer preparing to perform at the Berlin Opera and the serious injury that threatens her lifelong dream.

Cast: Weronika Frodyma, Anna Linnik, Sergey Basalayev

Vanishing Pearls: The Oystermen of Pointe à la Hache (USA) World Premiere

Director & Screenwriter: Nailah Jefferson

In Pointe à la Hache, Louisiana, the residents of this ruined fishing community continue dealing with the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, one of the worst man-made environmental disasters in US history.

Cast: Byron Encalade, Stanley Encalde, Kenneth Feinberg