Behind-the-Scenes Profile: Shari Frilot, Senior Programmer

Explain what you do for the Sundance Institute in 50 words or less.
I am a Senior Programmer for the Sundance Film Festival, which means I pick the films, write them up for the catalogue and present them at the Festival. I also curate New Frontier, a social space and experimental showcase of cinematic installations and multimedia performances.

What would most people be surprised to know about Sundance?
Most people might be surprised by the fact that this year, we are world premiering a brand new media technology, g speak, which promises to revolutionize the way we edit film.  Instead of pressing buttons on a keyboard, with g speak, one can grab images and move them around with gloved hands, just like Tom Cruise did in Minority Report! Totally rad!

What’s the once place everyone should visit in Park City?
If you come to Sundance, you MUST visit New Frontier on Main. Of course, I’m partial, but it is a space that is totally unique and unlike anything you’ll see in the film or the art world.  It has an energy that you won’t find anywhere else in the Festival.  The art and the conversations going down in that place can really expand your horizons!

If you had one piece of advice for filmmakers attending the festival for the first time, what would it be?
My advice to first time filmmakers attending the festival for the first time is see movies, meet people, stay human, and have as much fun as you possibly can. You won’t remember all the work you accomplished here, but you will ALWAYS remember the films you saw, the people you met, the conversations you had, and the parties you went to.  Also, if you find yourself having a most excellent time, don’t be tempted to try to chase down another party.  Stick with your momentum!

What’s your favorite Robert Redford flick?
Quiz Show

Why is New Frontier at the Sundance Film Festival and what is it?
As the media landscape undergoes massive change, new platforms and models for independent storytelling are becoming increasingly important to filmmakers, media artists, and the evolution of our collective cinematic culture. New Frontier at Sundance is a living experiment in presenting the creative cinematic work, and supporting the creative community found at the convergence of art, film, and new media technologies.

Conceived as a fully immersive cinematic experience within a social setting, New Frontier  on Main showcases cutting edge media installations and performances that push cinematic conventions to new limits. There are numerous galleries, a cafe, microcinema,  DJ booth, and sexy couches in a bejeweled ruby red & chocolate installation lounge.  We aim to create a cinematic experience that paves new avenues into the imaginations by seducing both the body and the mind.

New Frontier exists because the revolution in our cinematic culture MUST be infused with expressions of independent artistic vision, not just cute and clever ways of buying things.  Our cinematic future MUST be creative and splendid.