Contact:	Kim Brockway					For immediate release
		(212) 854-2419

Five Works By Columbia Filmmakers To Be Screened At Sundance Film Festival

Five films directed by students and recent alumni of Columbia University's Graduate Film Division will be featured in the Sundance Film Festival -- internationally regarded as the single most important showcase of American independent cinema -- in Park City, Utah, January 15-25, 1998. Lewis Cole, chair of Columbia's Film Division -- which is gaining industry recognition as a training ground for independent auteurs -- will be at Sundance from January 16-20, and available for interviews; call Kim Brockway, (212) 854- 2419 to arrange. The films scheduled to be screened are: --- "Beautopia," by Katharina Otto, a '92 alumna, is entered in the documentary competition. Crossing the globe, the film follows four young models (from Czechoslovakia, Germany, Great Britain, and the United States, 16-18 years old) on the verge of capturing their dreams and becoming superstars. Balanced with interviews with established models Lauren Hutton, Elle MacPherson, Kate Moss, and Claudia Schiffer, "Beautopia" contrasts the sobering reality of the business of beauty with its false promises, competition, and rejection to the fairy tale images in the young models' heads. --- "High Art," by Lisa Cholodenko, an alumna, is entered in the dramatic competition. Co-starring Ally Sheedy and marked by edgy, urban realism and dark, laconic wit, the film explores the interminglings of love and ambition, identity and addiction. --- "Breeze," by Barbara Sanon, a current student, follows a young girl as she embarks on a fantasy-like journey which takes her from girlhood to womanhood. The short film, which features an entirely African-American cast, has been screened at the New York Film Festival and at the Toronto Film Festival. It precedes the film "Slavegirls," which is entered in the documentary competition. --- "Melvyn Schmatzman, Freudian Dentist," by David Grotell, a '96 alumnus, will be featured in the Shorts Program II. Described as a sex comedy, the film was Grotell's thesis film. --- "The Absolution of Anthony," by Dean Slotar, a current student, will be featured in the Shorts Program I. "We are delighted that so many Columbia students and alumni will be presenting their films at this year's festival," said Columbia's Cole. "Their participation is yet another illustration of the momentum that's been building in the film program, and is particularly exciting as we prepare for our major spring festival in April, sponsored by Polo Ralph Lauren." Recent graduates of Columbia's Film Division are making their mark in the industry with a total of 11 feature film releases in 1996 and 1997. Most recently, alumnus James Mangold's Copland > enjoyed critical and box office success. Other successful recent alumni include Greg Mottola, writer/director of The Daytrippers, Nicole Holofcener, writer and director of Walking and Talking, Jon Sherman, writer and director of Breathing Room, Ben Ross, writer and director of The Young Poisoner's Handbook, Alex Sichel, director of All Over Me, Mo Ogrodnik, writer and director of Ripe (once a finalist at Sundance), and Stacy Cochran, writer and director of My New Gun and Boys. The Sundance Film Festival is a program of the Sundance Institute, a nonprofit arts organization founded in 1981 by Robert Redford to enhance the artistic vitality and diversity of American filmmaking. The competition to select the best independent dramatic and documentary films of the year is the centerpiece of the Festival, which draws thousands of filmmakers, industry professionals, and film lovers to Park City each year. 1.12.98 19,253