The 2021 Sundance Film Festival Kicks Off – Virtually

This year’s festival is a celebration of cinema from the comfort of your own space

As the first month of 2021 winds to a close, so begins the first semblance of a return to the kind of normalcy we expect in the cinema world, with the beginning of the Sundance Institute’s Sundance Film Festival. Headed by Tabitha Jackson, the 2021 edition of the prestigious event has gone completely virtual in keeping with conditions surrounding the pandemic.

Summer Of Soul (…Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised) (Image courtesy of the Sundance Institute)

This year’s festival began on January 28 and will continue till February 3. A shorter event than usual, this year’s line-up is also noticeably smaller, showcasing a little over 72 feature film productions, in a bid to have a more concise and compact festival than usual.

CODA (Image courtesy of the Sundance Institute via AP)

This year’s festival is taking place completely virtually, abandoning the cold streets of Park City, Utah. Those interested can purchase tickets on the Sundance website. While all-encompassing passes are sold out, single film tickets are still available. The festival has also partnered up with drive-in theatres, arthouse cinemas, and pop-ups in major cities across the country to conduct safe and social distancing-compliant screenings.

Passing (Image courtesy of the Sundance Institute via AP)

This year’s festival features several anticipated films, some of which were shot and made during the pandemic itself. Among the highlights of this year’s festival are Rebecca Hall’s Passing, starring Ruth Negga and Tessa Thompson; Siân Heder’s CODA, starring Emilia Jones and Marlee Matlin (to date, the only deaf performer to have won an Academy Award); Questlove’s Summer Of Soul (…Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised); Robin Wright’s debut directorial venture, Land; and Jerrod Carmichael’s On the Count of Three, starring Carmichael, Christopher Abbott, and Tiffany Haddish.

On the Count of Three (Image courtesy of The Sundance Institute via AP)

Check out the 2021 Sundance Film Festival’s line-up and purchase tickets on their website.

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