Sundance Film Festival Cancels In-Person Portion of Event

The Sundance Institute, operators of the Sundance Film Festival for nearly 40 years, announced last week that it will be cancelling the in-person portion of the event will be moving online this year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Originally intended to be a “fully hybrid” event, it will now be conducted entirely virtually.

“We have been looking forward to our first fully hybrid Sundance Film Festival and our teams have spent a year planning a festival like no other. But despite the most ambitious protocols, the Omicron variant with its unexpectedly high transmissibility rates is pushing the limits of health safety, travel and other infrastructures across the country,” the Sundance Festival said in a statement.

It added: "This was a difficult decision to make. As a nonprofit, our Sundance spirit is in making something work against the odds. But with case numbers forecasted to peak in our host community the week of the festival we cannot knowingly put our staff and community at risk. "

Virtual participants will still have the opportunity to discover new storyteller and enjoy new films, XR work, direct encounters with artists, and gallery space. The partner community will be offering a mix of conversation, talent talks and events.

The festival will begin Thursday, January 20, as planned. The 11 days of online programming will proceed with screening schedule adjustments to account for an online-only schedule. The seven satellite partners will host screenings for their local communities from January 28 to 30. The Sundance Institute says it has been in touch with all pass and package holders and ticket purchasers with an update on already purchased tickets. Single tickets will go on sale January 13 (January 12 for the membership pre-sale) at 10 a.m. MT.

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