Sundance Opens Outdoor Film Festival


    By Jordan Imlah

    If anyone thinks there”s nothing to do after the sun goes down in Utah, think again. The Sundance Institute kicks off its annual Outdoor Film Festival today in Park City with a promise to bring unique and interesting films to the masses.

    The film festival is a free, community summer screening series, which will play every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at sundown until Aug 22.

    “The lineup of films in this year”s outdoor film festival includes work that has influenced filmmakers, is focused around themes and highlights distinctive cinematic influences as well as classic films,” said Jill Miller, managing director of the Sundance Institute.

    Each week features a different theme and a different movie. The first week”s theme is the Roots of Independence featuring the classic, 1979 movie “Breaking Away,” directed by Peter Yates. This film has inspired independent artists and indie filmmakers, said Virginia Pearce, associate director of artist relations.

    “We”re an office of film geeks, and we debated over the films for awhile, “Pearce said. “We wanted to show great films for the outdoors and also classics. We wanted to bring some films to audiences, which usually aren”t seen by them.”

    While most of the films are chosen by the Sundance Institute staff, the first and last films are the picks of unique individuals, according to a news release. The first film was chosen by a Sundance Film Festival programmer and the last film, “Dr. Strangelove,” was the choice of director Michael Lehmann, the Grand Jury Prize winner at the 1989 Sundance Film Festival and frequent creative adviser at the Sundance Institute Director Labs.

    Most films come with a PG rating and were specifically chosen to interest the whole community.

    “We wanted to appeal to a broad variety of people, and our outdoor films tend to be more family based,” Pearce said. “It was not a hindrance to pick films with milder ratings. These are all classics in our opinion.”

    The Outdoor Film Festival is now in its 10th year and has seen a steady rise in popularity. Each show has from 200 to 300 people in attendance, Pearce said.

    For more information visit

    Sundance Outdoor Film Festival

    Each week the festival features a different class movie. All shows start at sundown and admission is free.

    This week: “Breaking Away”

    Today at City Park, Park City

    Monday at Gallivan Center, Salt Lake City

    Wendesday at Eccles Stage, Sundance Resort

    Next week: “The Truman Show”

    July 13 at City Park, Park City

    July 16 at Gallivan Center, Salt Lake City

    July 18 at Eccles Stage, Sundance Resort

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