This week, we focus on the Sundance Film Festival, mourned Howard Zinn and get an update from New Muslim Cool.

Sundance 2010: Image from a Sundance Screening

Much of the doc world was in Utah this week for the 2010 Sundance Film Festival. POV’s own Yance Ford blogged up a storm, bringing us video of a Q&A after a screening of My Perestroika, updates and gossip from Park City, and much more. IndieWire also has excellent coverage of the festival, including blurbs and reviews of almost all the films shown, a profile of Last Train Home (POV 2011) filmmaker Lixin Fan and a summary of the distribution forum. New York Magazine was impressed with the doc lineup at Sundance, while Variety says the diverse lineup featured “a lineup of nonfiction directors who’ve made enough movies to fill six seasons of ‘POV.’” Over on his blog, AJ Schnack rounds up reviews of all the docs at the festival.

Howard Zinn

We were saddened to hear about the passing of historian Howard Zinn on Wednesday, January 27th. Over the years, Zinn has been featured in many POV films, including The Camden 28, in which he testified on behalf of the Catholic Left activists who opposed the Vietnam War, and the forthcoming Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers. Daniel Ellsberg, upon hearing of Howard’s death, shared a memory of his friend Howard on the Huffington Post this week. Zinn has also lent his knowledge to the POV website: in 2006, in conjunction with POV’s broadcast of Waging a Living, he recorded an interview with Democracy Now‘s Amy Goodman about the history of workers’ movements in the U.S.

The 2009 POV film New Muslim Cool continues to make news. Azizah Magazine featured articles (PDF) written by New Muslim Cool producers Hana Siddiqi and Kauthar Umar. There will also be upcoming screenings of the film in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and elsewhere around the country. Check out photos from a recent screening at Harvard University.

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Former POVer Ruiyan Xu worked on developing and producing materials for POV's website. Before coming to POV, she worked in the Interactive and Broadband department at Channel Thirteen/WNET. Ruiyan was born in Shanghai and graduated from Brown University with a B.A. in Modern Culture and Media.