Sundance Film Fest 2007: Chicago 10 is Opening Night

Park City, Utah, Nov 16, 2007–The 2007 Sundance Film Festival announced today that the Opening Night Film for the upcoming Festival is the world premiere of CHICAGO 10, written and directed by Brett Morgen. CHICAGO 10 is an innovative documentary that combines historical storytelling, archival footage, interviews, animation and music to tell the story about the 1968 anti-war protests around the Democratic National Convention in Chicago that resulted in the famous Chicago Conspiracy Trial in 1969.

The 2007 Sundance Film Festival runs January 18-28 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden, and Sundance, Utah. We are pleased to open the 2007 Sundance Film Festival with Brett Morgens CHICAGO 10. We are particularly excited to be able to present a film that pushes the boundaries of many of the traditional aspects of documentary filmmaking, that speaks to audiences beyond what one might expect and that exemplifies the range of creativity and diversity that we support at the Festival, said Geoffrey Gilmore, Director, Sundance Film Festival.

CHICAGO 10 explores the build-up and aftermath of the week-long anti-war demonstrations staged
during the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, during which protesters clashed with the Chicago Police Department and the National Guard. Following the protest, eight of the most vocal activists were held accountable for the violence and brought to trial in 1969.

The defendants represented a broad cross-section of the anti-war movement, from counter-culture icons Abbie Hoffman and Jerry Rubin to renowned pacifist David Dellinger. Seven of the defendants were represented by Leonard Weinglass and famed liberal attorney, William Kunstler, with the eighth defendant, Bobby Seale, co-chair of the Black Panther Party, who attempted to defend himself. The trial was presided over by Judge Julius Hoffman.

The film presents contemporary history through a mix of bold and original animation with extraordinary archival footage that allows the film to move back and forth between the protests on the streets of Chicago and the resulting courtroom chaos. Set to the music of revolution, then and now, CHICAGO 10 is a story of young Americans speaking out and taking a stand in the face of an oppressive and armed government.

I am thrilled and honored that CHICAGO 10 has been selected to open the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. The Festivals long-standing generosity and tenacious support of independent filmmakers is exhilarating and humbling, said Morgen. It seems fitting to me that a film about the importance of taking a stand should launch the 2007 edition. For the past five years I have labored to bring this story into focus and with each passing day, the film becomes increasingly relevant. I cant think of a more appropriate time and place to unleash this beast.

CHICAGO 10 is Brett Morgens follow-up film to the critically acclaimed THE KID STAYS IN THE PICTURE, which premiered at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival and his Academy Award-nominated film ON THE ROPES.