sundance institute

In 2013 and 2014, OpenDocLab graduate students attended the Sundance Film Festival as part of the Creating Critics program, a joint initiative between MIT and Sundance.  The students focus specifically on the New Frontier program, a program that showcases “films that expand, experiment with, and explode traditional storytelling.”

This program is designed to foster critical dialogue that will support the current dynamics of innovation in documentary.  As disciplines converge and new story forms emerge, the film world is seeking a way to make sense of it. As top cinema festivals begin to exhibit cross-platform work, audiences are searching for a way to understand it. The program trains a new generation of critics schooled in comparative media and technology to critique digital storytelling.

In addition to attending screenings, pitching stories, and writing coverage to be published on Indiewire’s Criticwire blog, the students participate in a series of workshops to meet with professional film critics and other members of the industry including distributors, agents, publicists and festival programmers.


Click the links below to read some of the articles we’ve written at Sundance:


Sean Flynn, Are Interactive Films Transforming Modern Storytelling? Sundance’s New Frontier Has the Answer – Indiewire

Desi Gonzalez, How Sundance’s New Frontier Confronts Age-Old Ideas and New Questions – Indiewire


Katie Edgerton, How ‘The Occupy Wall Street Collaborative Film’ Demonstrates Crowdsourcing in Action – Indiewire

Julie Fischer, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love ‘The World Brain’ – Indiewire

Julie Fischer, What Sundance’s New Frontier Is Building In (and Out) There – Indiewire

Julie Fischer, The Hidden Depths of ‘Coral: Rekindling Venus’ – Indiewire

Katie Edgerton, ’Index’ Fingers at Sundance’s New Frontier – Indiewire