Posted on July 19, 2010 by Sawdust Art Festival

July 11, 2010
For Immediate Release
(THE DUST, a documentary about the Sawdust Art Festival, began principal photography in May and will continue through the summer)

Laguna Beach, CA – Laguna Beach local, Kailee McGee, and Orange County newcomer, Rich Costales, co-direct a feature documentary, THE DUST, which takes an intimate look inside the Sawdust Art Festival’s 44th season. THE DUST focuses on the journey of over 200 Sawdust artists, board members and staff, beginning with the annual Booth Pick Day and ending with booth teardown.   Focusing on behind-the-scenes footage of the Sawdust, McGee and Costales capture artists during the many stages of putting on the 2010 festival, including artists preparing for the traditional Preview Night party, making their first sales for the summer, demonstrating artistic techniques to visitors, and even taking lunch breaks to listen to their favorite local band.

McGee and Costales met while studying at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2005 and have since co-directed several projects including the New York premiere of Joe Penhall’s DUMB SHOW. Following their last completed project and an eight-month stay in Australia, both filmmakers considered many directions for their next film concept, including narrative movies and exotic travel films, however, inspiration for the concept of THE DUST spurred from McGee’s childhood.   For fifteen years, McGee spent her summers at the Sawdust Art Festival, selling her mom’s paintings and sweeping booths for candy money. To McGee, it was a home, job, and family. Three years ago, McGee brought Costales to the Sawdust for the first time. The eclectic art and community instantly inspired Costales, and McGee began to see the festival through new eyes.

Viewing the Sawdust from filmmakers’ perspectives, McGee and Costales saw an opportunity not to be missed. “While we were brainstorming ideas for our next film, we kept coming back to the Sawdust. There really isn’t any other place like it in the world, and we realized it was a great idea to go back to my roots and do what we know. NYU professors always told us to ‘write what we know’ and with the combination of new and old viewpoints between Rich and me, we figured this was the perfect concept,” said McGee.

THE DUST will appeal not only to local artists and Laguna residents, but also to a national audience of families, students, and art-lovers both young and old. Through their film, McGee and Costales seek to further broaden the public’s passion for the arts. Upon completion of the film documentary, THE DUST will be screened in Laguna Beach as well as submitted to many film festivals nationwide.

THE DUST has been personally financed by McGee and Costales, and is now affiliated with Fractured Atlas, a non-profit art organization in New York.   If supporters would like to contribute to THE DUST or be a part of the project, they can make a donation, receive credit in the movie, and receive a tax deduction. For more details about THE DUST and for more information on how to donate, please visit www.thedustfilm.info or email thedustthefilm@gmail.com. Both McGee and Costales will be on the Sawdust Art Festival grounds all summer long and will continue to film throughout the remainder of the season.  

To check out more details about the Sawdust Art Festival’s 44th annual summer season and calendar of events, please visit www.sawdustartfestival.org or call 949-494-3030. The Sawdust Art Festival is located at 935 Laguna Canyon Road in Laguna Beach with free City trolley service to and from the Act V parking lot. Admission prices are: Adults $7.75, Seniors (65+) $6.25, Children (6-12) $3.25, Children (5 & under) Free; Summer Season Pass $15; Annual Pass $20.

The Sawdust Art Festival is a non-profit art organization dedicated to educating the public and promoting the art created in Laguna Beach.

The Sawdust Art Festival thanks its 2010 sponsors Honda, MyFM, Hoegaarden and Kendall-Jackson.