The Outfest Queer Brunch is one of the hottest parties for actual filmmakers at Sundance. You won't find Paris Hilton getting jiggy in her fur boots there, but you will find a good percentage of the folks actually involved making movies - and lest we forget, that's really what Sundance is all about. Most of the filmmakers at Sundance must have been there yesterday morning, because the Grub Steakhouse was packed wall-to-wall with people schmoozing, networking, and trying to work their way to the buffet lines and the open bar. Our own C.K. Sample came with me to act as photographer, and he must have a vibe about him or something, because he was come onto twice - one guy grabbed C.K.'s rear in the buffet line and told him, "It's so crowded here, you have to just push your way through and be....aggressive". I'm sure C.K. was flattered.
I ran into lots of directors at the brunch, including Quinceañeara director Richard Glatzer, All Aboard! Rosie's Family Cruise director Shari Cookson, small town gay bar director Malcolm Ingram, and Oscar-award winning director Freida Lee Mock, who is here with her film Wrestling With Angels: Playwright Tony Kushner. Queer film historian Jenni Olson was on hand, as was novelist Armistead Maupin (scoring at the brunch buffet, left), whose novel The Night Listener was made into a film starring Robin Williams and Sandra Oh, which is premiering here at Sundance.
The biggest draw at the brunch was legendary director John Waters, who is so cool and amazing in his natural state, he doesn't even have to put on any pretense. Waters is practically the messiah of Outfest and of queer film - he was unabashedly taking Hollywood by storm as an openly gay man long before it was cool to do so, and paving the way for every gay person working in film today. It was fascinating watching people's reaction to Waters - waiting patiently to get a picture taking with him, to shake his hand, to touch his sleeve. C.K. bravely got right up there to introduce himself and give Waters a Cinematical tshirt - Waters was a little startled by C.K. at first, but warmed right up when offered a pumpkin-colored Cine shirt.
Director Maurice Jamal and his crew (pictured, right) had the best tshirts at the Outfest Brunch. Well, except for ours, of course.
More photos of the Outfest Brunch below the fold.