The Park City festival Slamdance is opening up its second event of the year in Los Angeles for emerging artists and filmmakers specializing in digital media art.
Founded in 1995 by a group of independent, low-budget filmmakers, Slamdance Film Festival is an annual celebration in Park City, Utah for budding artists and filmmakers alike. The organization helps foster the creative process of all participants, putting a focus on not only finished products but also on screenplays and development of submitted work in all stages.
Each year the affair takes place in January, never failing to occur during the same weekend as the Sundance Film Festival in order to deliver an authentic representation of independent filmmaking to each contestant. This year, the event was a success as it overflowed with new creative talent and handed out prizes to 20 shorts and feature length films.
Peter Baxter, Slamdance president and co-founder, said he supports the emergence of DIG (Digital, Interavative & Gaming) projects and strives to create a community that further encourages independent work.
“At Slamdance, we’re always about finding recognition for emerging artists and helping them get to the next level of their career,” he said.
The booming popularity of immersive media this year such as virtual reality presented artists all over the nation with brand-new, innovative tools to work with. Creators were given the chance to craft fresh projects unheard of ever before. A huge wave of artists lapped onto the shore, bringing with it a plethora of ideas for the future of digital media art. Unable to squeeze all the talent into one event, however, the wave called for another showcase, and from December 2-11 a new installment inspired by the 2016’s festival will unveil at Big Pictures in Los Angeles, curated by last year’s Slamdance alumni.
Alumnus Dekker Dreyer of immersive entertainment company Clever Fox Media said he’s looking forward to networking with other DIG artists at the upcoming event.
“At Clever Fox we’ve created VR projects for clients like Disney and Participant Media. I’ll absolutely be looking for new collaborators at DIG,” he said.
Artists Samntha Goman and Danny Cannizzaro of praised work Pry that was featured in last year’s festival are also returning to Slamdance DIG in the winter.
“By taking part in the inaugural year of Slamdance DIG, we were introduced to a truly passionate, energetic and interested community that has the potential to push boundaries of curating Digital Interactive and Gaming Projects,” Gorman said. “The breadth of DIG’s selections and subjects showcased true innovation.”
A selection of picks from the DIG festival will be run at next year’s Slamdance, with an emphasis put on VR and 360-degree video. The videos will be able to be played on VR apps for the web, iOS, Android, immersive headseats and Apple TV.
Dreyer believes that drawing in a cluster of new creators to a “by filmmakers, for filmmakers” event would inspire contestants to collaborate and apply the latest digital media technology to their art.
“I think it’s vital that these artists are given the level of exposure needed to continue creating. DIG is in a unique position to bring talented new media creators together with both the audience and creative community that Slamdance has nurtured for over 20 years,” Dreyer said.