‘Free Solo’ Team Reflects on Oscar Win as Documentaries Get More Competitive

  • Variety
‘Free Solo’ Team Reflects on Oscar Win as Documentaries Get More Competitive
On a bustling post-Oscar Monday, “Free Solo” co-directors Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi and Jimmy Chin arrive for their photo shoot looking like they’ve barely taken a breath since climbing the stage at the Dolby Theatre the night before to accept the award for documentary feature.

The win for the filmmaking couple represents not only their technical triumph for capturing the wire-free climb of Alex Honnold up the sheer granite face of Yosemite’s El Capitan but also the serious feat of edging out stiff competition in a year of such quality contenders in the doc category.

“This year is about connection for most people,” Vasarhelyi tells Variety, sipping hot water and gazing at her two children, Marina, 5, and James, 3, who have tagged along with their parents to Hollywood’s Milk Studios.

“From ‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor’ to ‘Rbg’ to our film, these are communal experiences,” Vasarhelyi adds. “People
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