Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Sociology, Social Work, and Anthropology


Christy Glass


The Sundance Film Festival has transformed from being a fringe festival to a leading showcase for independent cinema. This research shows that studios now descend upon the festival to acquire films for commercial distribution. The Sundance Film Festival seems to currently operate as a marketplace for films rather than an independent festival. This research seeks to examine how Hollywood studios have been able to infiltrate and commodify independent projects from the Sundance Film Festival and what the potential ramifications are for emerging independent filmmakers seeking to have their projects screened at the festival. In other words, have Hollywood studios coopted the Sundance Film Festival and if so, what does this process look like? This research seeks to answer these questions through an analysis of Sundance Film Festival data and interviews with festival informants.

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