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Dec
2023
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Sundance World Premiere for Chicago Indie ‘Ghostlight’

2024 will launch with a prestigious world premiere from a promising Chicago directing duo. Kelly O’Sullivan and Alex Thompson made a splash on the national indie film scene when their feature Saint Frances earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination and multiple Gotham Award noms to wrap up a prolific and award-filled festival run in 2021. O’Sullivan and Thompson have returned to the spotlight, as their latest feature, Ghostlight, will be making its World Premiere at the 2024 Sundance Film Festival.

In Ghostlight, when a construction worker unexpectedly joins a local theater’s production of Romeo and Juliet, the drama onstage starts to mirror his own life.

Here’s the first production still released for Ghostlight

Here’s the Sundance programming team’s take on the film: “Alex Thompson and Kelly O’Sullivan’s moving, gently comic collaboration is about the power of live theater to make sense of our offstage dramas and personal narratives. Ghostlight centers on Dan (Keith Kupferer), a melancholic middle-aged construction worker grieving a family tragedy. Cut off from his devoted wife, Sharon (Tara Mallen), and talented but troubled daughter, Daisy (Katherine Mallen Kupferer), Dan finds comfort and community in a misfit company of amateur actors. While moonlighting in a low-rent production of Shakespeare’s most protean tragedy, Dan is forced to confront his buried emotions. Real-life family Mallen, Kupferer, and Mallen Kupferer bring tenderness and authenticity to this poignant portrait, while Dolly de Leon — last seen stealing the scene in Triangle of Sadness — is hilarious as Dan’s irascible, improbable co-star.”

Get to Know Kelly and Alex

If you’re just hearing about Thompson and O’Sullivan for the first time, here is an engaging interview of the dynamic duo during their festival run with Saint Frances

You can also click right here for SCREEN’s round of Five Questions with Alex.

Chicago Talent Leads the Way in Front of and Behind the Camera

Ghostlight is a Chicago and Illinois independent film production through and through. The film is headlined by leaders in the city’s vibrant theatre scene, alongside veterans of the burgeoning independent film and television communities.

Here is a quick snapshot of some of the talent behind this Sundance selection…

Directors: Kelly O’Sullivan, Alex Thompson

Screenwriter: Kelly O’Sullivan

Producers: Alex Thompson, Pierce Cravens, Chelsea Krant, Ian Keiser, Eddie Linker, Alex Wilson

Cinematographer: Luke Dyra

Production Designer: Linda Lee

Composer: Quinn Tsan

Costumes: Michelle Bradley

Gaffer: Sammy Hochberg

Script Supervisor: Linh Tran

Editor: Mike S. Smith

Sound Design/Mix: Tom Myers

Casting: Mickie Paskal, Jennifer Rudnicke, Alexis-Jade Links

Principal Cast: Keith Kupferer, Dolly de Leon, Katherine Mallen Kupferer, Tara Mallen

The 2024 Sundance Film Festival is set for January 18–28 in Park City, Utah. See films on the mountain in beautiful Utah or watch from home with on-demand online viewing. Click here for the full Sundance lineup and access to festival passes and more.

Be sure to check back here at SCREEN Magazine for the latest from the independent filmmaking community in Chicago and the Midwest. You can also click right here to subscribe to our weekly email newsletter.

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