Sundance reveals programming for pandemic, Redford’s son’s latest film

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Los Angeles (AFP)

Next month Sundance will be the first major festival showcasing films made during and about the coronavirus pandemic, as organizers unveiled a line-up on Tuesday featuring the latest film by the late son of co-founder Robert Redford.

Due to Covid restrictions, the independent film extravagance will largely leave behind its usual mountain base in the state of Utah, western US, showing premieres online and in national drive-ins and arthouse cinemas.

Among them is “Life in a Day 2020”, Ridley Scott and Kevin Macdonald’s follow-up to their 2011 documentary which paints a “big picture of life on our planet” using thousands of videos shot and submitted. by members of the public in one day. in July.

The filmmakers received 300,000 submissions, as people around the world adjusted to their dramatically transformed lives under an unprecedented pandemic.

“These windows on their lives are really extraordinary,” programming director Kim Yutani told AFP, describing the project as “big business”.

“Not only is it the 10th anniversary, but it’s such an important year,” she added.

Also on display will be “In the Earth,” a 15-day virus horror film shot in August by Ben Wheatley, and the documentary “In the Same Breath” which claims to explore the Chinese government’s efforts to “transform pandemic in Wuhan in triumph for the Communist Party. ”

Several films also address racism in the wake of this year’s mass protests against police violence, including ‘Summer of Soul’, musician Questlove’s debut film about the huge forgotten ‘Black Woodstock’ festival that took place in 1969 in Harlem.

Rebecca Hall’s first film “Passing,” based on a 1929 short story about two African American women grappling with their race and gender identity in New York City, will also appear.

Among the 72 feature films, we can cite other highlights of Nicolas Cage’s supernatural action-horror “Prisoners of the Ghostland” and the cult musical biopic “The Sparks Brothers” by Edgar Wright.

With the Oscar submission deadline delayed by the coronavirus, Sundance films will be eligible to compete for the April Oscars this year.

And the festival will feature “Amy Tan: Unintended Memoir,” James Redford’s latest film about the author of the successful Chinese-American immigrant novel “The Joy Luck Club.”

James Redford, filmmaker, activist and son of actor Robert, died in October at the age of 58 from biliary cancer.

“It’s incredibly bittersweet… it’s very meaningful to us that we can play this film for the Sundance audience that it cared about so much,” festival manager Tabitha Jackson told AFP.

“But it’s very sad not to have him with us to take his bow as a director. ”

Sundance runs from January 28 to February 3.

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