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Let the Sundance indie film dance begin




General atmosphere at The 2012 Sundance Film Festival on January 18, 2012 in Park City, Utah.
General atmosphere at The 2012 Sundance Film Festival on January 18, 2012 in Park City, Utah.
Alexandra Wyman/Getty Images

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Park City, Utah, is engulfed, once again, by the annual Sundance Film Festival frenzy. Organized by Robert Redford's Sundance Institute, this year’s festival includes 117 feature-length films, chosen from 4,000 submitted from around the world.

The festival is meant to focus on and promote independent films, but Hollywood A-listers in attendance often attract attention as well. Robert De Niro, Danny Glover, and rap star Common are among the performers with movies being screened this year. Many of the films that will be shown at the festival do not have distribution deals yet, but a considerable amount of deal-making is anticipated. Documentaries often capture audiences at the event and those being shown this year include “Queen of Versailles,” “Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare,” and “Love Free or Die.” Other films that are highly anticipated include “Celeste and Jesse Forever” about a divorcing couple, “Red Lights with Cillian” about a legendary psychic, and “Filly Brown” about a young hip-hop artist from Los Angeles. The Sundance Film Festival runs from Thursday, January 19 through Sunday, January 29.

WEIGH IN

What films from this year’s Sundance Film Festival are you most interested in? How vital is the festival for the promotion of independent films? Has the festival maintained autonomy or has it been tarnished by Hollywood?

Guest:

Shirley Jahad, KPCC reporter at the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah