Announcing: Sundance Institute At Sundown presented by Acura

Special Benefit to Celebrate the Winner of the 2018 Vanguard Award: Boots Riley, Artist and Multi-Hyphenate

Featuring the LA Debut Screening of Sorry to Bother You and (Raucous) Afterparty: Tickets on Sale Now at

Los Angeles, CA — Sundance Institute, in collaboration with Annapurna Pictures, invites fans and supporters of independent cinema to celebrate the irrepressible writer/director/producer/musician/activist Boots Riley. Boots, an alumni of both the Sundance Labs and Film Festival, will be honored with the Sundance Institute’s annual Vanguard Award at its summer fundraiser on June 14, 2018 at The Theatre at Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles, just before the Los Angeles debut of his new film, Sorry to Bother You and an afterparty for all ticketholders immediately following. Proceeds from the evening will help advance Sundance Institute’s mission and programs that discover, support and amplify risk-taking and exciting independent artists in film, theatre and new media.

Sorry to Bother You , which had its world premiere in the U.S. Dramatic Competition categoryat the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, is a genre-defying work, taking place in a modern day alternate reality version of Oakland, CA where telemarketer Cassius Green discovers a magical key to professional success, propelling him into a macabre new universe. The film, starring Lakeith Stanfield, Tessa Thompson, Steven Yeun, Jermaine Fowler, Armie Hammer and Omari Hardwick was produced by Nina Yang Bongiovi, Forest Whitaker, Charles King, George Rush, Jonathan Duffy and Kelly Williams, and will be released in theatres by Annapurna Pictures on July 6, 2018.

Sorry to Bother You exemplifies Boots’ uncompromising and fearless independent vision,” said Michelle Satter, Founding Director of the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program. “When he was a Fellow at our 2015 Directors Lab, his official bio noted that he had never won an award for artistic achievement, and we’re so pleased to change that with this celebration.”

Sundance Institute’s Vanguard Award honors artists whose work and vision represents the highest, most breakthrough level of innovation, originality, and independent spirit that the Institute’s FFP program under Satter’s leadership has fostered in artists over its 30-year history. Past Vanguard Award recipients include Alejandro Gonzàlez Iñàrritu, Roger Ebert, Glenn Close, Dee Rees and Quentin Tarantino.

As the presenting sponsor of the Vanguard Award since 2015, Acura’s generous support helps fund the Institute’s programming dedicated to advancing the voices and work of bold, independent storytellers.

General admission tickets and special packages including advance access and reserved seating are available at

Sundance Institute
Founded in 1981 by Robert Redford, Sundance Institute is a nonprofit organization that provides and preserves the space for artists in film, theatre, and new media to create and thrive. The Institute's signature Labs, granting, and mentorship programs, dedicated to developing new work, take place throughout the year in the U.S. and internationally. The Sundance Film Festival and other public programs connect audiences to artists in igniting new ideas, discovering original voices, and building a community dedicated to independent storytelling. Sundance Institute has supported such projects as Mudbound, Get Out, The Big Sick, Strong Island, Blackfish, Top of the Lake, Winter's Bone, The Wolfpack, Dear White People, Trapped, Brooklyn, Little Miss Sunshine, 20 Feet From Stardom, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Fruitvale Station, Spring Awakening, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Fun Home. Join Sundance Institute on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

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