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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 February 2007, 12:02 GMT
Sunshine duo make mobile movie
Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton
Faris and Dayton took inspiration from what their children watched
The husband-and-wife team behind Little Miss Sunshine have followed up their Oscar-nominated effort with a short film designed to highlight the possibilities of making movies for mobile phones.

Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris's A Slip In Time is one of six shorts made especially for mobiles as part of the Sundance Film Festival Global Short Film Project, and screened at the 3GSM Mobile Phone conference in Barcelona this week.

The film industry is now dubbing the mobile phone the "fourth screen" - and the Sundance Institute has embraced it as a way forward for independent film makers.

"This is a great medium, and I feel it's really in its infancy," Dayton told BBC World Service's Digital Planet programme.

"Like all things, it will take a while to find its clearest, truest voice - but I think you see hints of it with what's happening on the internet with sites like YouTube.

"It's a very exciting time for film-making."

YouTube genesis

A Slip In Time is a short, slapstick farce, with minimal dialogue.

Dayton and Faris explained that they had spent some time examining the most watched content on the video-sharing site YouTube to see what people enjoyed most.

Little Miss Sunshine
Little Miss Sunshine follows a family as they head to a beauty pageant
"A lot of what we noticed and thought about was the stuff that gets seen a lot and sent around is often physical calamity - someone falling from a tree or getting hurt," said Faris.

"We have two 11-year-old sons, and they watch people getting hurt all the time. That was the genesis for us."

Road-trip comedy Little Miss Sunshine has been a surprise winner at many of the pre-Oscars ceremonies, including the Writers Guild of America and Producers Guild of America.

Dayton insisted that there is a massive difference between making content for the movies and something for a tiny screen.

And he said that he was doubtful people would ever want to watch feature-length films on their mobile.

"I think mobile phones are well suited for issue-based filmmaking, but I think doing something for an hour and a half is pushing it," he said.

"I think this will be a big medium for political advertising and for homemade political film.

"Every time there's a new technological breakthrough, everyone worries that everything that has gone before will stop.

"But television didn't kill theatrical film experience. I think this is just another option in the arsenal that a filmmaker has, and I think it will find its place, and not take away from what we have now."


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