Sundance Scene and Heard: Matt Damon, Kate Beckinsale, Gabrielle Union and Snow (Photos)

A continually updating report on the scene from Park City

As festival favorites like “Manchester by the Sea” and “Tallulah” emerge, the first weekend shifts into gear, and Utah gets a fraction of the storm that hit the East Coast, here’s the latest from Park City, Utah.

A view of the Egyptian on Saturday afternoon, January 23, 2016. (Mikey Glazer)

A view of the Egyptian on Saturday afternoon, January 23, 2016. (Mikey Glazer)

It’s Snowing on John Krasinski, the Jo-Bros, and New Orleans Saints’ QB Drew Brees…

It doesn’t compare to the socked-in East Coast #Blizzard2016, but the falling flakes on Saturday cast an idyllic cover over the ski town-turned-cinema-hub. Morgan Spurlock was the most prepared.

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: (L-R) Morgan Spurlock, Jeff Vespa and Ben Schnetzer attend Verge Sundance Party 2016 Presented By Eddie Bauer on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Verge)

Morgan Spurlock, Jeff Vespa and Ben Schnetzer at Vespa’s Verge Party at the Eddie Bauer space. (Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Verge)

Matt Damon: Created Water on Mars, Now Focuses on Water on Earth

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: (L - R) Todd Allen, Global Vice President, Stella Artois, Water.org Co-Founders Matt Damon and Gary White, and Sean Bailey, Sundance Institute Board member participated in a panel session hosted by Stella Artois on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah, regarding the current global water crisis and what needs to be done to end the long water collection journeys many women in developing countries have to make each day. (Photo by Rick Kern/Getty Images for Stella Artois)

Matt Damon is a co-founder of Water.org. (Rick Kern/Getty Images for Stella Artois)

He grew plants from feces on Mars and brought fresh water to the red planet in the Oscar-nominated “The Martian.” But on Saturday, Matt Damon was focused on water on Earth. A co-founder of Water.org with Gary White, Damon made a hush-hush appearance at the event at the Stella Lounge at the Village at the Lift while in town for the film he produced, “Manchester By the Sea,” starring his “Good Will Hunting” buddy Casey Affleck.  USA Today noted that this springs a “new Damon-Affleck friendship record.”

Actors Charlie Day, left, John Krasinski and Casey Affleck pose together at the "Manchester by the Sea" premiere party hosted by Chase Sapphire Preferred during the 2016 Sundance Film Festival on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016, in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision for Chase Sapphire Preferred/AP Images)

Charlie Day, John Krasinski, and Casey Affleck toasting “Manchester by the Sea” at the Chase Sapphire Preferred space on Saturday night. (Evan Agostini/Invision for Chase Sapphire Preferred/AP Images)

Ellen Page on the Sundance Career Springboard

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: (L-R) An instant view of actors Allison Janney, Ellen Page and writer/director Sian Heder attend the "Tallulah" Premiere during the 2016 Sundance Film Festival at Eccles Center Theatre on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for Sundance Film Festival)

Allison Janney, Ellen Page, and “Tallulah” writer/director Sian Heder are riding a festival buzz. Steelhouse sponsored the film’s premiere party(Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images for Sundance Film Festival)

“‘Hard Candy’ (a 2005 Sundance thriller) was here when I was 17,” Ellen Page told TheWrap at a reception for “Tallulah” on Saturday afternoon. “(Sundance) is part of the reason why I’m fortunate enough to have a career and get to do this thing that I love.”

Ready for an Awards Podium Near You: “Emerging Triple Threat” Nate Parker

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: Actors Nate Parker (L) and Gabrielle Union attend the Creative Coalition Spotlight Initiative Awards Gala Dinner at Cisero's Bar on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

The triple-threat Nate Parker and Gabrielle Union partnered up for “Birth of a Nation” and the Creative Coalition Spotlight Initiative Awards at the Kia Supper Suite on Saturday night, January 23 (Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Nate Parker stole the show at the Creative Coalitions Spotlight Initiative Dinner on Saturday night with an extemporaneous speech that would infuse any awards show producer in a control room with an allergy to the playoff music button.

When Gabrielle Union took the podium to introduce “The Birth of a Nation” writer-director-star on Saturday night, she rebranded him “an emerging triple threat.” She also gave him a more personal title – “my friend and employer.”

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: (L-R) Natasha Lyonne, Kevin Smith, and Harley Quinn Smith attend the Creative Coalition Spotlight Initiative Awards Gala Dinner at Cisero's Bar on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Natasha Lyonne and Harley Quinn Smith get the finger-spotlight. (Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

In accepting the award from co-star Union, Parker gave an impassioned speech that silenced the clanking of dishes inside the Kia Supper Suite and hushed the low rumble coming from a standing room only crowd that included Justin Long, Michael Jackson attorney and manager John Branca, Kevin Smith, Natasha Lyonne, Harry Hamlin, Annalynne McCord, Alysia Reiner, IMDb founder Col Needham, and Spike Lee, who was Parker’s own guest of honor.

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: Filmmaker Kevin Smith attends the Creative Coalition Spotlight Initiative Awards Gala Dinner at Cisero's Bar on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

True to the spirit of Sundance, indie filmmakers Kevin Smith and Spike Lee broke bread together. Ironically, because of the Creative Coalition’s non-affiliation with the festival, nobody at the event would officially say the word “Sundance” on the microphone. (Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

“I’m dedicating half of this award to you,” Parker said to Lee. “But I’m keeping it at my house.”

Parker recounted how he sought out Lee’s cell phone number, texted him, and got a call back within five minutes. When Lee told him to get in a cab and meet him in DUMBO immediately, Parker did not know the Brooklyn neighborhood from the Disney elephant.

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: Director Spike Lee speaks during the Creative Coalition Spotlight Initiative Awards Gala Dinner at Cisero's Bar on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Spike Lee backed up his Oscar boycott plans earlier on the day on Saturday. More on this below. (Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images)

Minutes later, Parker was sitting next to Lee during a “Do the Right Thing” book signing while discussing his upcoming slave revolt project. The day continued with dinner and then a mentorship.

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: Actor David Alan Basche and actress Alysia Reiner attend the EcoLuxe Lounge at Sundance16 on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for EcoLuxe)

Alysia Reiner perusing the goods at the EcoLuxe Lounge (Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for EcoLuxe)

“(Lee) is like my father, my mentor, my uncle,” Parker said. Lee himself was among the winners that included “Orange is the New Black’s” Alysia Reiner for her film “Equity,” the “first female-driven Wall Street movie.”

Was she checking Twitter for reaction? “No.”

Who Is Minding the Shop Back on Melrose?

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: (L-R) Craig Susser,Joe Jonas,Nick Jonas and Phil McIntyre attend the Phil McIntyre And V Magazine Toast Nick Jonas And His Film "Goat" At A Special One Night Craig's Restaurant Pop-up In Sundance - 2016 Park Cityon January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by John Parra/Getty Images)

The Craig behind Craig’s, Craig Susser, Joe Jonas, Nick Jonas with host Phil McIntyre sat down for McIntyre and V Magazine’s dinner party for “Goat”. Craig’s popped up in Park City for one night only. No word on the number two manning the dinner floor back on Melrose. (John Parra/Getty Images)

Meanwhile in other Craig news…

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23: Craig Robinson and Allison Janney attends Kari Feinstein's Style Lounge on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah. (Photo by Lily Lawrence/Getty Images for Kari Feinstein)

Craig Robinson and Allison Janney take a mini-groupie at Kari Feinstein’s Style Lounge (Lily Lawrence/Getty Images for Kari Feinstein)

 

Drew Brees Is Still a Teammate to ALS Warrior Steve Gleason

Drew Brees Steve Gleason Sundance

Drew Brees, Steve Gleason, and D’Qwell Jackson. (Photo courtesy of Chase Sapphire Prefferred).

 

While Sunday is one of the NFL’s biggest days of the year with the slate for Super Bowl 50 to be decided, New Orleans Saint Drew Brees was here in Park City supporting former teammate Steve Gleason. Gleason’s physical deterioration is reportedly presented in graphic, unsanitized detail in the documentary about the father, husband, former NFL player, and ALS battler who began making videos for his child before he lost the ability to speak.

Warning: “If You Don’t Dance…I’m Going Home”

Annalynne McCord, Mel Debarge, Dream Hotels Nylon

Annalynne McCord, Mel Debarge, and invitees who made it up the 4th floor skydeck at Nylon Magazine and Dream Hotels’ Apres Ski on Saturday, January 23, 2015. (Getty Images)

At Nylon magazine and the Dream Hotels’ Apres Ski cocktails on the choice sky deck real estate at Heber and Main, the crafty DJ Mel Debarge had a warning for the fashionable crowd that had made it through the tight-door and long line downstairs: “If you don’t dance, I’m going to turn off and go home. I’ve done it before.”

After filling the fully daytime dance floor with Justin Bieber‘s “Sorry,” he returned to the mic a bit sorry himself: “OK, I won’t go home.”

Debarge later rebooted the energy at Tao late on Saturday night after a technically bland and ho-hum set from Brody Jenner. After Diplo’s spin though Sundance and nationally touring DJ’s Ruckus, Spyder, Politik, Devin Lucien, and Michelle Pesce’s Nona Entertainment management team placing multiple female talents spinning across Park City, Utah is starting to sound a lot more like another festival that begins with “S” – SXSW.

The Dream Hotel arrives as part of Hollywood’s building boom, aiming for a summer opening.

PARK CITY, UT - JANUARY 23:  Markees Christmas and Jeff Vespa attend Verge Sundance Party 2016 Presented By Eddie Bauer on January 23, 2016 in Park City, Utah.  (Photo by Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Verge)

Markees Christmas is one of Jeff Vespa’s “Class of 2016” picked for the Verge (actors on the brink). Saturday night’s party had a long line outside the Eddie Bauer space. (Randy Shropshire/Getty Images for Verge)

Spike Lee Holding Firm to Heat vs. Knicks Game Tickets, Not Oscar Tickets

“I want to thank President Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the Board of Governors, for doing the right thing (in making swift changes to Academy membership and voting policies). I’m still going to the (NBA) game (that night). I’m not showing up. My wife and I, we made the decision, we’re not going to change our decision. And we’ll be at Madison Square Garden, Sunday night, February 28th, New York Knickerbockers against the Miami Heat.”

Lee made the comments at the IMDb studio earlier on Sunday.

Send invitations, bookings, and tips to Mikey@thechimp.net.

TheWrap’s Party Report at Sundance is presented by the vehicles that will be shuttling filmmakers and to casts to special events, the 2016 Kia Sorento CUV. Among those special events are The Party Report’s party pal and HQ, the Kia Supper Suite by The Church Key. Keep up with real time images of the scene in Park City on @SundanceParties (Twitter and Instagram) .