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Festival Predictions

2017 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Matthew Heineman’s City of Ghosts

No stranger to conflict zone coverage and harm’s way, when it was announced this past summer that the award winning docu filmmaker would move into narrative fiction and into a lifetime of civil war hard-nosed journalism from Marie Colvin, our first thought was: it takes one to know one. It now appears that Matthew Heineman was cooking up another docu project as we only found out about City of Ghosts because of some announcement concerning post production coin via the Sundance institute. A double winner at the fest for the Best Director award and a special jury prize for cinematography, Cartel Land was an astounding, head-spinning piece on corruption, vigilantism and border paranoia — and it’s still landing accolades to this day. This fall he showcased his docu short “The Third Man” (on silver winning medalist Peter Norman who was shamed for supporting his fellow athletes), and if we had to guess, this might make a cookie crumbs argument as to how the media shaped the November election.

Gist: This is the story of a new type of warfare: a battle over ideas, over hearts and minds, over clicks and views.

Production Co./Producers: Matthew Heineman.

Prediction: U.S. Documentary Competition.

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

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric 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. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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