state in the country, gridlock at inner city polls ignites tempers and sets off charges
of conspiracy. No Umbrella drops us squarely into the chaos as we watch the
irascible octogenarian councilwoman (Ms. Fannie Lewis) take on polling place
breakdowns, an unresponsive bureaucracy and an increasingly agitated electorate.
The film won many awards including the Jury Award for Best Short at the Full Frame
Festival in Durham, North Carolina and an Audience Award at the Sydney Film Festival. It
was acquired by HBO films and aired on Cinemax. Click the following link to view trailer for
No Umbrella -- Election Day in the City (http://www.noumbrella.org/clips.htm)
The Rewards of Awards: Sundance, Slamdance and Full Frame
For documentary filmmakers, the film festivals are arenas where documentary makers,
buyers, and aficionados congregate to view, partake of the culture, and make deals.
Sundance, Slamdance, and Full Frame are three highly competitive, prestigious film
festivals that provide excellent exposure and recognition. The Sundance Institute, started
by the actor Robert Redford, “advances the work of risk-taking storytellers worldwide”
(http://www.sundance.org/about/). Slamdance, an alternative venue “began when a group
of cheerful, subversive filmmakers weren’t accepted into the Sundance Film Festival.
Unwilling to take ‘no’ for an answer, they instead started their own event - Slamdance:
Anarchy in Utah” (http://www.slamdance.com/). Full Frame, located in Durham, NC,
“serves the documentary form and its community by showcasing the contemporary work of
established and emerging filmmakers. The festival provides a space that nurtures
conversation between artists, students, and the Full Frame audience”
Laura heard in November that she got into Slamdance. She says, “That’s an excellent
alternative to Sundance. It’s not Sundance but it runs concurrently and buyers, media and
press pay attention to it. Neither festival allows you to be in both at the same time. I heard
from Slamdance the Friday before Thanksgiving. The last day to be notified by Sundance
was the following Monday. The Slamdance people told me I had to commit by Sunday in
order to be in the festival. Needless to say, that made for an exciting but tense
Thanksgiving. I hadn’t heard from Sundance on Sunday, so I faxed in my commitment
form to Slamdance. I figured I’d made the right decision because all day Monday, I heard
nothing from Sundance. Then at exactly 8:00 PM EST, I got the call from Sundance. I
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