The nonprofit Sundance Institute today unveiled details for the 2024 Sundance Film Festival‘s fundraiser, Opening Night Gala: Celebrating 40 Years Presented by Chase Sapphire® which will take place on January 18, 2024 at the DeJoria Center in Utah.
Kicking off the 40th edition of the Sundance Film Festival, the evening will honor trailblazing and breakout storytellers, as well as celebrate 40 years of Sundance’s commitment to elevating independent storytelling.
Christopher Nolan will be honored with the first-ever Sundance Institute Trailblazer Award. Celine Song and Maite Alberdi — both of whom premiered films Past Lives and The Eternal Memory, respectively, at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival — will each receive the annual Vanguard Award Presented by Acura.
The annual opening night gala enables the nonprofit to raise critical funds to support independent artists year-round through labs, grants, and public programming that nurture artists globally. The 2024 event is made possible with the generous support of Chase Sapphire. The upcoming Sundance Film Festival will take place January 18–28, 2024 in Park City and Salt Lake City, Utah, as well as online from January 25–28.
For the past 40 years, the Sundance Film Festival has been a foothold for independent filmmaking, acting as a platform not just for discovering unique voices, but also launching and transforming careers. Recognizing an artist’s unwavering dedication and notable contributions to the field of independent film, the inaugural Sundance Institute Trailblazer Award will be presented to an individual who exemplifies this legacy: Christopher Nolan.
He was celebrated by Sundance two decades ago when his breakthrough film, Memento, screened to great acclaim at the Festival. Memento’s 2001 Sundance debut garnered that year’s Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award and was ultimately nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Memento catapulted Nolan’s career, propelling him from independent films to major blockbusters, including The Dark Knight trilogy and this year’s triumph, Oppenheimer. One of the most acclaimed directors of our time, Christopher Nolan boldly pushes the parameters of cinematic storytelling.
“Presenting Memento at the Sundance Film Festival marked a pivotal moment in my career, this award is a full circle moment and testament to the extraordinary influence of independent filmmaking,” said Christopher Nolan.