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Filmmaker Dabis casts fresh Sundance face: herself

The Associated Press, Saturday, January 19, 2013, 11:21am (PST)

PARK CITY, Utah (AP) — Filmmaker Cherien Dabis has introduced a fresh new actor to crowds at the Sundance Film Festival: herself.

In her latest trip to the independent-cinema showcase, the comic drama "May in the Summer," writer-director Dabis put herself through a rigorous casting process before deciding she was the right person for the title role.

Dabis had been repeatedly asked if she ever thought about acting while she was promoting her earlier drama "Amreeka," which premiered at Sundance in 2009.

Unable to find just the right woman, Dabis cast herself after a long audition process that included sending tapes of her and two other actresses to a veteran Hollywood insider for an objective opinion.

The casting choice has worked so far. "May in the Summer" was chosen as one of Sundance's day-one films.

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