The Critic’s View:
While the movie industry events calendar hosts no shortage of glittering awards ceremonies, it’s often argued that the favourite of true cinema aficionados is The Sundance Film Festival, hosted annually in Park City, Utah. Each year, the great and good of the independent, international and mainstream film industry alike head to the spectacular snowy landscapes around Salt Lake City and the exclusive Sundance Resort to celebrate their craft and gain an insight into the next big releases at theatres worldwide.
To spend time at this festival is a clear statement of both success and fine taste, opening the doors of opportunity to network with industry leaders, relax in multitudinous luxury lounges and enjoy some incredible hospitality options alongside many of the world’s biggest stars.
Following the disruptions of the past few years, Sundance 2023 will return to Park City, Utah as a hybrid festival, making the most of the opportunities that digital participation can bring alongside the joyous festival atmosphere so beloved by cinemagoers. According to Festival Director Tabitha Jackson, the combination of online offering and immediacy of live events is set to make this Sundance the most exciting yet.
Festival attendees can expect the usual mix of world-premiere feature films, shorts, episodic works and the brand new ‘New Frontier’ program, alongside the fantastic additional experiences that make the festival such a calendar fixture. Stunning gastronomic encounters, fine wines from nearby producers, talks, debates and keynotes will all come together to produce a festival that’s sure to delight the ardent cinephiles of the world.
As for afterparties and exclusive events at Sundance, there’s a plethora of places to escape the cold in Park City during the festival, which attracts up to 50,000 visitors each year. These include intimate spaces such as Audible Speakeasy, which hosts an iconic VIP party, and larger-scale events at Strayer Studios and WarnerMedia Lodge.
An array of talks, premiere parties, discussion groups featuring stars, directors and producers, cocktail parties and awards dinners can also be uncovered with relative ease.
The Sundance Film Festival hosts thousands of visitors each year, and partners with dozens of beautiful hotels in Park City and Salt Lake City to accommodate its guests. These include:
- The Sheraton Park City
- The Caledonian
- Montage Deer Valley
- Waldorf Astoria Park City
- Sundial Lodge at Canyons Village
The Sundance Film Festival is often celebrated for its accessibility, with a number of affordable ticket options and price ranges. Visitors can enjoy screenings for as little as $25 and more exclusive ticket packages – which include VIP dinners and access to the awards ceremony itself – are also available.
[header image is A still from “It’s Only Life After All” by Alexandria Bombach, an official selection of the Premieres program at the 2023 Sundance film festival. Courtesy of Sundance Institute | photo by Jeremy Cowart]