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Rejected by Sundance, moviemaker’s ‘Depression’ a sign of the times

January 22nd, 2013 Posted in Arts and Life

By Dani Hayes

PARK CITY—Unconventional director Marc Fignon marched up and down Park City’s Main Street Saturday holding a gigantic, yellow sign. “I’m Depressed,” it said.


Filmmaker Marc Fignon is depressed on Park City’s Main Street because Sundance rejected his film, “The Great Depression.” HNC reporter Katie Swain commiserates with him and his illegal sign. Dani Hayes photo

The Sundance Film Festival had not accepted his movie “The Great Depression,” but he was getting plenty of attention anyway with his protest against the “Sundance way of going about.”

“I think walking up and down Main Street is punk rock in its own nature,” Fignon said. “My thought was, ‘What’s a clever way to get this message out?’ I thought, ‘What’s honest and memorable?’ So the sign is what I ended up going with.”

Fignon wrote, directed and edited his semiautobiographical movie, which is set to be released in May. “It’s a love story,” he said, holding his huge sign as traffic passed. “It’s about a boy and a girl. It’s about getting over sadness.”

Keeping the details of his movie quiet, Fignon teases people with his intriguing ways of publicizing. To go along with his screw-the-man attitude, he found that he was breaking Park City code for the signage—signs are limited to 2 feet high (his is 7 feet), not counting the stick or post.

“I kept bumping into this guy,” he said, “and he kept on saying, ‘Next time I see you, you’re done. You’re arrested.’ And while I’m taking it [the sign] to my car, he sees me and he’s like, ‘You’re coming with me.’ And I say, ‘Oh, I’m just going to my car,’ and I run away. I might have spent the night in jail.”

Fignon ditched the sign soon after that run-in with The Man. “It’s probably in a dumpster somewhere, but I think the message got across,” he said.

Fignon’s in-your-face act of publicity and rebellion made global news when The Guardian, a UK newspaper, added a photograph of him in its “24 Hours in Pictures” montage.

“I was just really happy,” Fignon said. “I’m glad that [after] all my effort that I put into it, I got something out of it.”

On Sunday, Fignon was on Main Street wearing a cow onesie and a cape, all for the sake of his movie. One wonders what creative acts of publicity and civil disobedience remain in store for the rest of the Sundance festival, which concludes Sunday.


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