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29 November 2018

42% of Sundance competition films directed by women

The official selection for this year’s Sundance Film Festival, which takes place in Park City (Utah) from 24 January to 3 February 2019 has been announced.

Of the 61 directors in all four competition categories, comprising 56 films, 42% are women, 39% are people of color, and 23% identify as LGBTQIA.

The festival received a record-breaking 14,259 submissions from 152 countries. Of the feature film submissions, 31% were directed by one or more women; 38% were directed by one or more filmmaker of color; 11% by one or more people who identify as LGBTQIA. One-hundred and twelve feature-length films have been selected in total, representing 33 countries and 45 first-time filmmakers.

A number of UK productions and co-productions made the selection, including WFTV Patron Gurinder Chadha’s latest project, Blinded by the Light, which is set in 1987 – during the austere days of Thatcher’s Britain – and tells the story of a teenager who learns to live life, understand his family and find his own voice through the music of Bruce Springsteen. Chadha’s film is screening in the Premieres programme, alongside Chiwetel Ejiofor’s The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind, which was produced by Andrea Calderwood and WFTV member Gail Egan.

All three of the UK productions/co-productions selected in the World Cinema Dramatic Competition programme were directed by women; Dirty God (Dir. Sacha Polak), The Last Tree (Dir. Shola Amoo) and The Souvenir (Dir. Joanna Hogg). Writer and WFTV member Susanne Farrell co-wrote Dirty God with the film’s director, Sacha Polak.

Director and 2015 WFTV Award winner, Kim Longinotto’s latest project Shooting the Mafia will screen in the World Cinema Documentary Competition. Whilst producer and WFTV member Victoria Gregory’s feature, Maiden (Dir. Alex Holmes) will screen in the Spotlight programme.

To see the full list of announced films, click here.