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'Linsanity' documentary premieres at Sundance to standing ovation

By Carole Mikita | Posted - Jan. 27, 2013 at 10:37 p.m.

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SALT LAKE CITY — "Linsanity" is a documentary following the sensation of one NBA player's introduction to the league, but it's also about a man of faith who has had his shares of challenges.

The weather nearly caused disappointment for an audience tonight at the final screening of The Sundance Film Festival of the documentary "Linsanity," that follows the life of NBA star Jeremy Lin. The Houston Rockets were grounded for hours in Grand Junction, Colo. before finally making it to the film's screening.

Lin arrived late to watch the documentary about the international phenomenon and media sensation he's become.

The life of Lin is layer after layer of highs and lows, and independent filmmaker, Evan Jackson Leong wanted to tell this story. But it didn't go so well at first.

"He's like ‘I'm not Kim Kardashian, I'm reality, I don't want that kind of attention. I'm just a ball player,' " Leong said of Lin's reaction to the proposed film. "For me, you're a ball player that has an awesome story, so, let's try something."

Tonight Lin joined the director and producers onstage. A devoted Christian, he often expresses his gratitude to God. That is what finally convinced him to do the film.

"The more that I went through my journey, the more I realized what a big part of it God was, and I just felt like I had to share it and I had to share it with the world," Lin told KSL.

Lin has also suffered racial slurs and prejudice. Overcoming challenges is a message of the film, he said.

The film received a standing ovation at Sundance. Simply the best reaction, the director said.

"It's incredible. And you can't ask for anything more as an independent filmmaker," Leong said. This is the biggest stage to premiere something and to watch it with 600 people the first day, oh, it was amazing, I'll never forget it."

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Carole Mikita


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