PARK CITY, Utah – Everyone’s favorite Internet meme — the cat video — has hit the big time.
Behold the Catdance Film Festival, a one-night celebration of camera-worthy cats that was held Saturday at the Sundance Film Festival.
The five short films that were featured went beyond the typical surprised-kitty or cat-threatens-dog fare popular on YouTube. The Catdance films, culled from submissions by cat lovers across the country, told creative, feline-focused tales. There was the story of an aging Internet cat who can’t cope with the loss of fame and “A Cat’s Guide to Caring for a Human.”
“Humans are inherently lazy,” reported the latter film in a ’50s-inspired instructional style. “Left to their own devices, they will sleep well past the break of dawn.”
Other films included “Catalogue,” where a couple orders a bedspread from a catalog and is surprised to see that the cat shown in the photo was shipped with the comforter. “Rocky” tells a heartfelt story of a man’s 17-year relationship with his cat. In “A Change of Heart,” a photo of a cat on a cellphone saves a failing relationship.
Each of the five finalists was awarded a golden cat-litter scoop.
AnnaLynne McCord hosted the event, which was sponsored by the Fresh Step litter brand. The “90210” star is a lifelong cat lover who displayed photos and videos of her cat, Christopher Buni, on her own cell Saturday.
“What’s not to love about a cat?” she asked. “Cats have so much personality. They’re very highly intelligent creatures, and if you’re a highly intelligent creature, you respond to that.”
Catdance was accompanied by a festive, feline-themed party on Park City’s Main Street. Spoofs of famous movie posters dotted the walls, with cats replacing the stars of films such as “Top Gun,” “Pulp Fiction,” “The Big Lebowski” and “Clueless.”
Catdance continues online: Fans can watch the feline films and vote for their favorite until Feb. 28. The winning filmmaker will collect $10,000. Also available are limited-edition knit hats with cat ears, with all proceeds benefiting the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
Couric to score first on-camera interview with Te’o
SOUTH BEND, Ind. – Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o will be interviewed by Katie Couric, the first on-camera interview given by the All-American since news broke about the dead girlfriend hoax.
Te’o and his parents will appear on Couric’s syndicated daytime talk show Thursday. ABC News announced the interview Sunday, but did not specify when and where it will take place.
Te’o gave an off-camera interview with ESPN on Friday night. He insists he was the victim of the hoax, not a participant in it. Te’o told ESPN that the person suspected of being the mastermind of the hoax has contacted him and apologized.
The strange tale of Te’o apparently being duped by an elaborate hoax, pulled off by a California man, has put the Heisman Trophy finalist in national headlines.
Walters said to be OK after fall at party
NEW YORK – Veteran ABC newswoman Barbara Walters has fallen at an inauguration party at an ambassador’s home in Washington and has been hospitalized.
Walters, 83, fell Saturday night on a step at the residence of Britain’s ambassador to the United States, Peter Westmacott, ABC News spokesman Jeffrey Schneider said. The fall left Walters with a cut on her forehead, he said.
Walters, out of an abundance of caution, went to a hospital for a full examination, Schneider said Sunday. She was alert and was “telling everyone what to do, which we all take as a very positive sign,” he said.
Even in her ninth decade, Walters continues to keep a busy schedule, including appearances on “The View,” prime-time interviews and her annual special, “10 Most Fascinating People,” on which, in December, she asked New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie if he considered himself fit enough to be president someday.
— From news service reports