Sundance Film Festival 2024 recap


The Sundance Film Festival celebrated its 40th year in 2024, a long way from its humble beginnings in 1978. A record 17,000 films were submitted this year for consideration, and actors such as Pedro Pascal, Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart starred in this year’s lineup.

Dawson Thomas from Farmington attended Sundance this year and the previous year. He bought a student pass and became a Sundance volunteer on the theater team.

“My main reasons for going is I am a big movie guy. I love watching movies. I think it’s so cool to connect with characters on a screen or see a story play out,” Thomas said. “And I think especially independent filmmaking is really important. It tells stories that aren’t always told … whether that’s like trans stories or LGBTQ stories or just people of color, things like that.”

Thomas said his number one film this year was “My Old Ass” by director Megan Park. He found it very funny and genuine. His second favorite movie was “Love Lies Bleeding,” an A24 film starring Kristen Stewart.

Thomas also got to meet some of his favorite celebrities this year, such as Saoirse Ronan, Pedro Pascal, Dylan Mulvaney and Brittany Broski.

BYU graduate Tristan Mourier attended Sundance this year for the first time, and feels Sundance has evolved since it first began.

“I love the concept of Sundance and I think it’s a great festival. I think it should be kept alive for sure. I would want to go again,” Mourier said. “I just feel like we are depriving ourselves of a vast array of perspectives because we’ve considered that one side has it right or are the good guys.”

Mourier said because Sundance is focused on minority groups and international inclusivity, he feels sometimes the artistic merit of a film is less of a focus. One of his favorite films to come from Sundance over the years is “Whiplash,” starring Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons. 

To keep up with next year’s festival, visit

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