First NZ doco selected for Sundance

A NZ documentary has won a place at the Sundance Film Festival for the first time. The Art Star and the Sudanese Twins by Auckland filmmaker Pietra Brettkelly will compete in the World Cinema – Documentary section alongside 15 other films. Brettkelly’s film follows contemporary art star Vanessa Beecroft over 16 months as she attempts to adopt a pair of South Sudanese twins. Along the way, the documentary explores Beecroft’s unconventional personal life and her controversial art. Brettkelly first met Beecroft while filming a NZ TV series in South Sudan. “It was one of those bizarre places in the middle of nowhere, where you only expect to find foreign correspondents, aid workers and UN staff,” she says. “Then I spotted this woman who was obviously none of those; she really grabbed your attention. I went to talk to her … I knew nothing about Vanessa Beecroft, but I was intrigued by her. And international adoptions – I felt like this was a story that had to be told.” Sundance 2008 runs from January 17 to 27.

Tags: Pietra Brettkelly  Salt Lake Tribune  Sundance Film Festival