Sundance by the Numbers Image

After nearly forty years of Sundance we take it for granted… but do you really know the size and reach of the festival? Revisiting it this year makes for a good opportunity to take a bird’s-eye view of just how much goes on and into the largest and most influential festival for Independent film in the U.S.

In 1978 Robert Redford and Sterling Van Wagenen started the Utah/US Film Festival in Park City, Utah. 

That first year the films included Deliverance, A Streetcar Named Desire, Midnight Cowboy, Mean Streets, and The Sweet Smell of Success.

“Throwing around terms like ‘largest’ and ‘most prestigious’ does not convey the large scale of the incredible real metrics…”

The name was changed in 1985 to Sundance Film Festival under the umbrella of nonprofit organization The Sundance Institute.  Sundance has become synonymous with American film, always mentioned in top festival lists from around the world and is the largest festival for Independent film in the U.S. The institute has grown to host multiple festivals including Sundance: London and Sundance: Hong Kong and has offices in Park City, Los Angeles, and New York.

Throwing around terms like “largest” and “most prestigious” does not convey the large scale of the incredible real metrics. For a snapshot of its true scope, here’s Sundance by the numbers:

Approximately 200 feature-length and short films are selected each year.  In 2017 Sundance brought 71,600 attendees, including 37,200 from outside Utah for a state economic impact of over $151M.

Sundance has proudly become a staggering tour de force of U.S. and global film influence and promotion that for 2018 includes:

13,468 FILM SUBMISSIONS

  • 3,901 Feature Films
  • 1,799 U.S. Features
  • 1,059 U.S. Narrative Features
  • 740 U.S. Documentary Features
  • 2,102 International Features
  • 1,207 International Narrative Features
  • 895 International Documentary Features
  • 2,266 Narrative Features
  • 1,059 U.S. Narrative Features
  • 1,207 International Narrative Features
  • 1,635 Documentary Features
  • 740 U.S. Documentary Features
  • 895 International Documentary Features
  • 8,740 Short Films
  • 4,396 U.S. Short Films
  • 4,344 International Short Films

191 FEATURE AND SHORT FILM SELECTIONS

  • 122 Feature-length films
  • 69 Short films
  • 29 Countries represented in feature film
  • 25 Countries represented in short film
  • 108 World Premieres in feature film
  • 30 World Premieres in short film
  • 53 First-time feature filmmakers
  • 30 First-time feature filmmakers in competition
  • 45 Features directed by women, 37% total
  • 35 Shorts directed by women, 51% total
  • 80 of all short and feature films were directed by women, 42% total
  • 40% of all short and feature filmmakers are women

2,163 VOLUNTEERS

  • 1,406 Returning volunteers from 2017
  • 780 New Volunteers
  • 1,172 Utah Resident Volunteers

16 VENUES

  • 22 Screens (Including multiplexes)
  • 10 Park City theaters
  • 5 Salt Lake City theaters
  • One Sundance Resort screening room
  • 16 Public festival screening venues

MORE

  • 897 Total Festival Screenings
  • 24 Documentary and narrative virtual reality screenings
  • 34 special Sundance Institute projects
  • 63 Panels and music events

 

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