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Local News

Sundance 2022 goes hybrid with screenings in person and online

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KPCW
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As the festival goes to a hybrid of in-person and online, the Egyptian Theater on Park City Main Street will continue to host screenings.

The Sundance Film Festival for 2022 is being planned, for the first time, as a hybrid event, with screenings available both in person and online.

Sundance planners have reduced the number of theater venues in the Park City area.

And while the festival is not offering a locals ticket package, Sundance Institute Managing Director Betsy Wallace says there will still be access for Utahns.

As part of the festival, taking place from January 20-30, organizers are introducing a new program called Local Lens. It includes a selection of free in-person and online screenings, ticket discounts, student screenings and more.

“Primarily with Local Lens, we’re trying to figure out a way to test and make sure that we can approach everybody throughout Utah and throughout Park City in ways that maybe they haven’t had the ability to do in the past. So I think we’ll make it through this festival. I think a lot will stay with us if not everything,” Wallace says.

The festival will offer free in-person screenings on Thursday, January 27th, both in Summit County and Salt Lake, and on Friday the 28th in Salt Lake. On Sunday the 30th, there will be Best of Fest screenings in both Park City and Salt Lake.

In addition, Utahns can access online free screenings on Saturday, January 22nd, and a Best of Fest showing on January 29th.

“It will be based on you need to be a Utah resident, and all those good things that we’ve done in the past,” Wallace says. “But we’re also offering on January 26th, the morning a.m., which is Wednesday, the ability to access our five-dollar-off coupon, to be able to see any of the movies coming up, on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday. And we’re super-excited about that. It is our way of trying to get everybody equal access to these films. They’re going to be fantastic films, as they always are. The way to access it is you can set up your account on ‘sundance.org,’ put your information in, and if you’re a Utah resident, you will be able to go in and access those film’s discounts based on your credit card location. So your credit card has to be with a Utah zip code and you would be able to access whatever films are available at that time.”

Wallace says Sundance is committed to health and safety, given the persistence of COVID-19. To reduce its footprint, the festival is dropping three sizable venues—the MARC, the Doubletree Hotel, and Temple Har Shalom.

However, Park City’s seven other traditional venues, from the Egyptian Theatre to the Redstone Cinemas, will be operating.

Ticket packages will go on sale December 17th. Wallace says they are offering a streamlined process this year.

“We’re trying to make it so that we can have a way that people don’t get bogged down trying to understand what our offering is. And the first thing up for us is the packages that go on sale in the middle of December. And with that, as you get your packages, you can immediately fulfill your tickets for the films—either, depending on what kind of package you bought, if you bought an on-line only, well then you’re gonna fulfill an online-only film. But if you have a hybrid, you get to choose between the two. And that’s really the exciting part. So once those programs are announced, that program is announced, then the earlier part of December, hopefully people will have time to really identify what they want to see. And then when the packages go on, you can really early-access our piece of this festival, that is December 17th. And as you bought your package, you can immediately fulfill everything you want.”

Locals can prepare for the festival by registering online at “festival.sundance.org” and they can also sign up for insider emails.

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