Houston Rockets point guard Jeremy Lin, the subject of the documentary “Linsanity”, will appear in person on Jan. 27, the last day of Sundance Film Festival.
“Linsanity,” the documentary about the rise of unlikely NBA point guard Lin, premiered in Park City, Utah, on Jan. 20. It is the rags-to-riches story of how the six foot three Lin became an overnight sensation last February, coming out of obscurity to lead the Knicks to seven straight wins. The undrafted Harvard graduate was on the verge of being cut, but had 25 points and seven assists in what could have been his final NBA game against the New Jersey Nets on Feb. 4, and his legend only grew from there.
Lin scored a career-high 38 points against the Los Angeles Lakers on Feb. 10, and drained a game-winning 3-pointer with 0.5 seconds left in Toronto four days later. Since then, Lin has signed on to Houston Rockets as their point guard.
“I’m excited for Jeremy that he will be able to experience his Sundance premiere after all,” said film director Evan Jackson Leong, according to USA Today. “I'm thrilled I'll be able to watch the finished film with my film's subject."
The film lays out Lin’s story in great detail, going back to Lin’s childhood in Palo Alto to the weeks that changed everything last February.
Leong and his crew approached Lin and began filming him when he was at Harvard.
“It was a project of passion,” said Leong after the screening. “We had no money. Nobody cared about our project before February of last year.”
In the film, Lin speaks of his faith and the motivation of his game. Up to a last line of the film, he is filmed saying that by “playing for God” he can “walk on water," according to Los Angeles Times.
The Los Angeles Times reported that the documentary also highlights the sequence of background events that gave Lin the opportunity to play and score 25 points; Lin says in the film that the months of delays at the start of last year’s NBA season gave him time to sharpen his game, and the compressed schedule led to injuries gave him a chance on the court.
While the film shows Lin’s struggles on and off the court – facing doubts about his game and a series of racist taunts he faced as the first Asian-American to start in the NBA – it also covers the media storm that followed Lin a year ago at this time.
A funny but honest footage shows Lin confessing that a Madison Square Garden security guard wouldn’t let him into the building because he didn’t believe Lin played for the Knicks.
Moreover, the film director also captures Lin in his moments of honesty.
“How am I supposed to play if everyone is looking at me expecting me to make a miraculous play every time I touch the basketball?” said Lin.
According to MMXLII.com report, Lin himself spoke about the project.
"I'm just definitely trying to tell my story through my own eyes. I was going to kill some of the filmers during some of those tough times, getting cut and stuff. But they did a good job staying on me and making me at least get a couple minutes of footage here and there," Lin said. "So there's some cool stuff in there. When things weren't going well that was the last thing on my mind. But going back I'm glad we got it because it's able to just show the journey."
The Los Angeles Times reported that at the end of the premier of "Linsanity" the audiences stood up and cheered, while a coach said he thought it should be mandatory viewing for high school athletes.