Charles Bramesco


Sundance London will go virtual to continue in 2020

Zeina Durra’s Luxor and Alan Ball’s Uncle Frank head up the main feature programme.

While the people of Earth await a vaccine or other lasting solution to the ongoing coronavirus crisis, we’ve been left with no choice but to contrive novel methods by which we might continue onward with the things that made life worth living back in the before-times. Sundance London, the offshoot bringing the choice cuts from the sprawling American film festival across the Atlantic, was scheduled to take place in its usual springtime slot, but inclement circumstances forced an indefinite postponement.

The postponement may now be upgraded to “definite,” as Sundance London has issued a press release announcing a virtual edition of the 2020 festivities, with a few films set for their UK premiere. For a truncated three-day run, the programme will stream online to a wider audience than ever, bringing the screenings and special events that would have otherwise transpired in person.

Three features will be made available to those with a £20 festival pass: the first will be Uncle Frank, Alan Ball’s road picture about a gay man (Paul Bettany) in the ’70s coming to terms with his own past, the second will be Luxor, an Egypt-set romance from Zeina Durra, and the final film will be Boys State, a documentary chronicling one thousand teens’ effort to build a representative government from the ground up.

The festival will also corral five directors for a group discussion about their work that swept the original Sundance back in January, though the movies in question will not be on display for patrons. The chat will include Janicza Bravo (director of Zola), Emerald Fennel (director of Promising Young Woman), Romola Garai (director of Amulet), Justin Simien (director of Bad Hair), and Julie Taymor (director of The Glorias). In the free-to-stream panel, they’ll get into the vicissitudes of the independent sector, and where this cataclysmic event will leave them and their to-be-released films.

Pass holders will also have access to a panel discussion on inside-baseball industry matters with executive from Film4 and NEON, as well as a programme of eight short films. (The offerings include an animated fantasy about a beautiful large slug, and a dark vision of violent uprising by a school’s a cappella club against their bullies.) In terms of sheer size, Sundance London 2020 may be scaling back, but what they’ve got still has the same international heft as their programming from years past.

Sundance London take place 7-9 August, 2020. For more info visit picturehouses.com/sundance

Published 10 Jul 2020

Tags: Alan Ball Sundance London Zeina Durra

Suggested For You

Crises of faith and incredible women: What’s on at Sundance London 2018

By Hannah Strong

There’s lots to look forward to at Sundance’s annual London showcase.

A Ghost Story to close Sundance Film Festival: London 2017

By Little White Lies

David Lowery’s haunting drama is among the highlights of this year’s programme.

My Darling Quarantine brings the film festival experience online

By Charles Bramesco

Organisers from Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Locarno and others are joining forces to raise money in light of Coronavirus.

Little White Lies Logo

About Little White Lies

Little White Lies was established in 2005 as a bi-monthly print magazine committed to championing great movies and the talented people who make them. Combining cutting-edge design, illustration and journalism, we’ve been described as being “at the vanguard of the independent publishing movement.” Our reviews feature a unique tripartite ranking system that captures the different aspects of the movie-going experience. We believe in Truth & Movies.