Sundance Tweaks 2023 Kickoff Dates For Live & Virtual Film Festival; Masks Requested But Not Mandatory For Attendees

Sundance Tweaks 2023 Kickoff Dates For Live & Virtual Film Festival; Masks Requested But Not Mandatory For Attendees

We’ve known for months when the 2023 Sundance Film Festival was going to start, but now we know how the Park City-set hootenanny will meld and distinguish its live and virtual programs.

Back with an in-person festival for the first time since 2020 and after some leaderships changes, the Robert Redford-founded Sundance will kick off January 19 next year with screenings and events throughout the ski-slope town and other parts of Utah. However, for those unable to travel to Park City or those still concerned about Covid, a virtual Sundance will launch January 24, it was revealed today.

As has somewhat been the case the past two years, the digital festival will feature an on-demand and manicured selection of Sundance feature films, including all competition titles from the U.S. Dramatic, U.S. Documentary, World Cinema Dramatic, World Cinema Documentary, and Next categories. Additionally, the virtual fest will include new work across other sections of the feature program, including episodic work and short films, plus multimedia works and discussion panels.

In terms of health and safety, all volunteers and staff at the in-person Sundance 2023 will be required to wear masks. While masks are not mandatory for attendees at screenings at venues like Park City’s Egyptian theater, film fans will be asked to cover up in the interest of everyone’s best interests. Testing and vaccinations are also not mandatory at this point for in-person attendees, though Sundance will strongly encourage everyone who is showing up to take as many Covid precautions as they can.

“We are excited to bring the Sundance community together for the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, a celebration of independent filmmaking,” Sundance Institute CEO Joana Vicente said Tuesday.

“After two years of being apart, our priority is reuniting in person, while still sharing bold new films with audiences across the country through online access,” the festival boss added. “We’ve designed this year’s festival based on our learnings from previous years — embracing the traditions that have been meaningful in the past, while also looking toward accessibility for audiences and expanding the platform we provide our storytellers.”

“We can’t wait for our 2023 festival to give a bold start to the year, with the help of our inspiring storytellers, ingenious creators, and engaged audiences,” added Sundance director of programming Kim Yutani. “For 39 years, the Sundance Film Festival has been a stalwart in the independent film community, and we’re thrilled to continue to be such an exciting annual gathering for artists and audiences.”

As potential participants plan their post-holiday travel to Sundance, submissions remain open. Feature film submissions close September 5 (official) and September 26 (late). Short film submissions close September 5 (late). New Frontier submissions close September 9 (late). Episodic content submissions closed August 26 (official) and September 12 (late).

Deadline will of course be there in strength. So, see you on Main Street.

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