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2017 Sundance Film Festival Predictions: Sean Baker’s The Florida Project

Not unlike how we feel about the road trip formula, there is no shortage of or love lost for: kids drifting off into ruined worlds and vividly living life in exploratory mode (see George Washington to Beasts of the Southern Wild for brilliant examples). A true creative force, and one of our American indie filmmaker heroes, 2015’s Tangerine (nominated and winner for a slew of Gothams and Indie Spirits) undoubtably became the defining moment for the name of Sean Baker to introduce himself to a larger base of cinephiles. Apart from the landing the likes of Willem Dafoe, Caleb Landry Jones, Macon Blair and inserting a non-professional set into the mix, the shot on 35mm The Florida Project includes the creative involvement of cinematographer Post Tenebras Lux‘s Alexis Zabe.

Gist: Co-written Chris Bergoch, this tells the story of a precocious six year old and her rag-tag group of close friends whose summer break is filled with childhood wonder, possibility, and a sense of adventure, while their parents and the adults around them struggle with hard times.

Production Co./Producers: Sean Baker, Chris Bergoch, Kevin Chinoy (Tangerine), Andrew Duncan (Fun Mom Dinner), Alex Saks (Wildlife), Francesca Silvestri (Starlet), Shih-Ching Tsou (Tangerine).

Prediction: U.S. Dramatic would be the only place to showcase this item, but the team could bypass Park City for a spot on the Croisette or Lido.

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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