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Category: Special Edition

Oscars Preview: Saoirse Ronan Finds a Version of Herself in ‘Brooklyn’

Saoirse Ronan’s Best Actress Oscar nomination for her redefining turn in Brooklyn was something of a fait accompli among the awards forecasting crowd, and for good reason. But the film’s surprising Best Picture nod in some ways symbolized the Academy’s successive bow to her glowing performance – although supporting acts from Emory Cohen and Domhnall Gleeson would also have their say. As Eric Hynes remarked in last year’s profile of the unassuming 21-year-old, her development from “precocious child” actor to a talent on the brink of womanhood has seemed almost surreal in its uniformity.

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7 Films to Watch During National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

January is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month, and the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program is proud to highlight its support of seven projects that raise awareness of modern-day slavery and human trafficking at home and abroad. Human trafficking is the violation of human rights in which lives are traded, sold, exploited, abused and ruined. Here are some facts, courtesy of dosomething.

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Visiting the Boundless Worlds of Sundance Film Festival’s New Frontier on its 10th Anniversary

Yesterday morning between the hours of 9:00 and 11:00 a.m., I traveled to Cuba, visited the set of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, experienced a city under air attack, endured solitary confinement, walked a narrow path over a blazing, infinite abyss before cradling a mysterious orb in some futuristic, alien land, roved around Mars, and became an exotic, endangered creature floating above a rain forest—for starters.

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Here’s How to Follow the Sundance Film Festival from Home

The Sundance Film Festival thrives on retaining its raison d’être: to serve as a home for and an inclusive celebration of independent film (see: $20 individual tickets and an abundance of Utah Locals privileges). Still, there exists a specious notion that unless you’re a filmmaker, journalist, actor, or studio exec, the Festival is an ethereal dreamscape. If you’ve naively capitulated to said perceptions of exclusivity — seriously, my own Mom could Waitlist her way into at least a few screenings — and plan on being far from the chilly epicenter of Sundance this year, all is not lost.

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6 Sundance Films to Watch for Native American Heritage Month

In 1990, November was officially recognized as National American Indian Heritage Month. The years since have proven to be both a political and artistic resurgence for Native Peoples. From the early support of Greg Sarris’s (Coast Miwok) Grand Avenue at Sundance Institute’s 1992 June Screenwriters Lab to the premiere of Chris Eyre’s (Cheyenne/Arapaho) Smoke Signals in 1998, supporting and celebrating Indigenous creativity has been a longtime mission of Sundance Institute.

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Sundance Selections: 6 Real Life Horror Stories for Halloween

You know that feeling of deliverance that arrives as the credits roll to a gripping horror film? It summons you out of the story, offering salvation from the dread. Yeah, you can forget about that relief when it comes to these films. Frankly, it’s hard to find refuge in reality when the stories themselves are real.

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Yoav Potash on Using Film to Create Justice for Victims of Domestic Abuse

Editor’s Note: October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and as Yoav Potash’s work with Crime After Crime continues
to inspire elected officials to push new legislation and rectify
misguided American policies surrounding victims of domestic abuse,
another project that made waves at the Sundance Film Festival in 2014 is
challenging the widespread public perception of these victims. Private Violence intimately
places viewers in the shoes of two domestic violence survivors and
explores why the option—and all too common refrain—to “just leave,” is
often not one. I am not sure which is harder: making a documentary feature film or passing new laws to improve our justice system.

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Please Take Your Seats: 9 Sundance Film Festival Ticketing Tips

Navigating the world of ticketing at the Sundance Film Festival can seem a daunting undertaking. Fortunately, Sundance’s own expert in the field, Linda Pfafflin, knows the ins and outs better than anyone, and for the last few years she’s made herself a resource for audiences looking for seats. Below, she shares some of the lesser-known avenues into both the films you’d never thought you had a chance at seeing—and those you’d never thought to try.

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7 Films to Add to Your Watchlist This Hispanic Heritage Month

Phrases like “language of cinema” tend to prompt exaggerated eye rolls, but even the most bromidic sayings sometimes bear repeating. Scorsese once dedicated an entire lecture to the topic, and the notion that cinema is in fact a universal dialect is verified every time we experience a foreign language film. What’s lost in translation is, invariably, found again in film.

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8 Masters of Chinese Cinema

The 2015 Sundance Film Festival: Hong Kong returns today (technically yesterday, if we’re subscribing to the disorienting time change) for its second year, this time at the newly minted Metroplex. For SFF: Hong Kong neophytes, the event is a cultural exchange of sorts that sees the exportation of 11 American independent films direct from the 2015 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah. You can check the complete festival program out at hk.

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6 Deadbeat Sundance Characters for Labor Day

I ‘ll sometimes find myself musing over the relevance of longstanding holidays and how, maybe, there ought to be qualifiers for who gets the day off. Exhibit A: Labor Day, celebrated by everyone from workers living a life of drudgery to students who may have never worked an honest day in their lives. It would seem that a career spent constructing high-rises, or diagnosing maladies, or defending indigent legal clients would probably merit a day off more than, say, a professional poker player (Dan Bilzerian, insufferable trust fund bro, I’m looking at you).

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Sundance Salutes Supreme Court Ruling on Right to Marry

Our country woke up to some good news today: The Supreme Court ruled that marriage is legal for gay and lesbian couples in all 50 states. It’s an unprecedented level of support for gay and lesbian Americans (many of whom grew up in times and places that offered no support whatsoever), offering definitive proof that attitudes are changing. Today’s news was a long time coming.

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