Reprinted from The Hollywood Reporter by Etan Vlessing on December 14, 2020.
As Sundance director Tabitha Jackson’s reign at the indie film festival gets well underway, the marquee indie US film showcase has gone mostly online with a pandemic-era discovery lineup filled with work by women and BIPOC directors and more than half the 2021 program shot by first-time helmers.
For Jackson, the focus on debut feature directors underlines how, despite the COVID-19 crisis pausing film production in Hollywood and upending planning for Sundance’s upcoming January 28 to February 3, 2021, edition, the marquee festival isn’t playing it safe as it doubles down on revealing new independent voices to the world.
“It’s meant that hard work and new voices have been able to emerge in a way that perhaps they wouldn’t have been able to do in years past and that for us is a gold mine of discovery,” Jackson told The Hollywood Reporter as Sundance unveiled its film lineup Tuesday. …