2016 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Shaz Bennett’s Alaska is a Drag

Shaz Bennett's Alaska is a Drag


Shaz Bennett has her own unique history with the Sundance Film Festival having worked for them as a programmer before it was even known as Sundance. Flash-forward a couple of decades later, and Bennett took her 2012 short of the same name and elongated it into a feature length film. Alaska is a Drag is self-described as if Rocky and Hedwig had a love child and not only did the LGBT friendly, loud and proud DIY title become a hit on Kickstarter but this summer emerged as the big winner at the US in Progress in Poland this October landing major post production coin. No doubt this feels a little reckless, spirited and memorably micro.

Gist: Leo dreams of becoming an International Superstar, but these dreams are hard fought stuck working in a fish cannery in Alaska.

Production Co./Producers: Bennett, Diane Becker, Melanie Miller.

Prediction: NEXT section or a Narrative Comp item at SXSW.

U.S. Distributor: Rights Available. TBD (domestic). TBD (international)

Eric Lavallée is the founder, editor-in-chief and film critic at IONCINEMA.com (founded in 2000). Eric splits his time between his home base in Montreal, NYC, and is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. Top Films From Contemporary Film Auteurs: Almodóvar (Talk to Her), Coen Bros. (Fargo), Dardennes (La Promesse), Haneke (Caché), Hsiao-Hsien (Three Times), Kar-wai (In the Mood for Love), Kiarostami (Taste of Cherry), Lynch (Mulholland Dr.), Tarantino (Pulp Fiction), Van Sant (My Own Private Idaho), von Trier (Breaking the Waves)