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Straight from the Film Festivals

Joel Marsh & Terence Nance

Cannes and Sundance: the gold standard of cinema. This year, two Northeastern filmmakers were invited to screen their work at the legendary film festivals.

Joel Marsh, AMD’12, traveled to Cannes after commencement. His whimsical short film, One Step Forward, follows a young man who proposes to his girlfriend on a sunny afternoon in the park. The twist: The entire story is told from end to beginning.

Terence Nance, AS’05, took his first feature film, An Oversimplification of Her Beauty, to Sundance. The story focuses on a relationship teetering between platonic and romantic, incorporating music composed by Nance, handmade art, and animation. Nance describes it as a multisensory production.

Attending Cannes and Sundance gave both artists the opportunity to interact with a large community of fellow filmmakers, and the experience inspired them to create more films.

“It was surreal to see One Step Forward screened because it seems impossible to think that people are watching your work and judging it on the level at which other filmmakers create,” Marsh says.

Nance was similarly awed. “I think all of the work I saw at Sundance—love it or hate it—inspired me. There were some extraordinarily ambitious films, and I was reminded to continue not to censor the ambition of my concepts.”

Screenshots from One Step Forward, by Joel Marsh, AMD’12


Screenshots from An Oversimplification of Her Beauty, by Terence Nance, AS’05