Seattle-Centered Short Films Debuted at the Sundance Film Festival

Scent of a Sasquatch- Drew Christie
"Scent of a Sasquatch," Drew Christie

Last fall, five filmmakers came to Seattle to shoot a short film based on one of the five senses

written by Charyn Pfeuffer photos courtesy of Visit Seattle and SundanceTV

Visit Seattle, the city’s tourism bureau, recently teamed up with SundanceTV at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, to launch Project Five by Five.

Here’s the gist: Last fall, five filmmakers came to Seattle to shoot a short film based on one of the five senses. The collection features an animated Sasquatch using her nose to sniff her way through Emerald City (Drew Christie), Bruce Lee finding peace in a moment of turmoil (Martha Stephens), the journey a tasty ice cream makes from farm to cone (Clea DuVall), what sounds Jimi Hendrix may have heard and their impact on his life (Terence Nance) and Seattle’s first skyscrapers – our towering evergreen trees (Ian Cheney).

Five noteworthy directors had one day (!) to shoot a documentary that would immerse viewers in the magic of Emerald City. The results were thoughtful and contemplative, capturing the unique senses and stories that make Seattle. Think minimal dialogue; more focus on mesmerizing visuals. The project was the brainchild of PB&, Britt Peterson Fero and Pete Anderson, who turned standard issue tourism marketing material on its head with this brilliant campaign.

The films premiered to a packed house and interactive filmmakers panel at SundanceTV HQ. The festivities were followed by a Seattle-themed pop-up party, featuring all sorts of local celebrities. Famed Washington soul singer Allen Stone, with his long curly blond locks and oversized glasses, played a set and Rachel’s Ginger Beer was served up in Seattle Mule cocktails. Chefs Jason Stratton and Josh Henderson shucked fresh Taylor Shellfish oysters to Modest Mouse and Sir Mix-a-Lot playing in background. The Seattle story was told again, this time in a physical setting, through all the various senses.

The city offers much more than rain, Starbucks and a grunge legacy. There are many reasons why Seattle often crests the top of best places to live (and visit). Many of these were captured through this delightful collection of visual eye candy. Even in a packed room of dancing and conversation, when I looked up at the screens flashing stills from the various shorts, I closed my eyes and could smell the brackish water of Puget Sound and the unmistakable pine fragrance of nearby conifer forests. And it made me long to be home.

All five short films are currently live on SundanceTV and VISITSEATTLE.tv. For more information on things to see and do in Seattle, visit visitseattle.org.

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