Yesterday saw the release of Sundance 2012’s short film lineup. The official press release is here for your perusal. The lineup is lacking a bit in star power compared to last year when we got films from Tim and Eric, the Beastie Boys, Neil LaBute and other established figures, but I’ve never found the progressive celebritization of the shorts category to be an interesting development. Shorts are about finding the great voices of the future, and we’re extremely happy for all the selectees, which include many friends of this site. It’s always hard to formulate sexy story-lines for the shorts categories, but let me give a try: ONLINE. We’ve been telling people for a while that Sundance’s official entry policy has changed to not discriminate against films that exhibit online before the festival, and this year the message should ring loud and clear—you can have both! Reap the benefits of an online launch and still keep your hopes up for getting into America’s most important fest. To illustrate the point, here are a handful of films you can watch right now.
2012 Sundance Shorts
Sci-Fi Kibwe Tavares

Robots of Brixton

Architecture student Kibwe Taveres filters a vision of a robot uprising through the lens of history, blending high grade CG with archival footage of the 1981 Brixton riots.

Experimental Kelly Sears

Once it Started it Could Not End Otherwise

The mysterious events at a 1970's high school are revealed between the pages of an old yearbook in this animation from collage veteran, Kelly Sears.

Documentary Zackary Canepari & Drea Cooper


Growing old doesn't mean growing sedentary. Meet the young-at-heart ladies of the Leisure World synchronized swim team.

Comedy Stephen Neary

Dr. Breakfast

When his soul leaves through his eyeball, it is up to two friendly deer to take care of Dr. Breakfast's catatonic body.

Past Work
There were even more films online before the selections were made, but a handful of films that had been fairly successful online were pulled down by their creators after receiving the good news from Sundance. C’est la vie. To make up for their foolishness (kidding), here are past works by filmmakers with new shorts in this year’s program.

Far West

A fun experiment in live entertainment with a surprise that more than pays off the slow buildup.

Dark Comedy Don Hertzfeldt

Everything Will Be OK

Heavy topics in simple line-drawings—experience the dark and funny story of Bill's spiraling bout of mental illness by the great Don Hertzfeldt.

Dark Comedy Nash Edgerton


It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye.

Drama Julia Pott


The mysteries of the heart are front in center in London-animator Julia Pott's examination of love, faded.

Horror Robert Morgan

The Cat with Hands

A dream-inspired tale of a scary kitty with a thirst for human body parts.

Experimental Stephen Irwin

The Black Dog's Progress

Tragic story of a dog's trail through abusive owners told through a series of cascading flip books.