ARTS + ENTERTAINMENT

After forging new ground, Sundance Film Festival director steps down

Jun 7, 2022, 4:30 PM
Sundance director...
Photo Credit: Mike Terry, Deseret News.

SALT LAKE CITY — Changes were announced on Tuesday that impacts the management of the Sundance Film Festival (Festival). Tabitha Jackson, Director of Sundance Film Festival and Public Programming is stepping down. And CEO Joana Vicente will lead the Festival’s development and planning in the meantime. 

Additionally, Director of Programming Kim Yutani is joining the leadership team of the Sundance Institute. In this role, Yutani will manage industry and artist relations.

Vicente and Tutani will plan the next Festival together alongside senior programmers, according to the Sundance webpage

Jackson joined the Sundance Institute in 2013, as director of the documentary film program. She oversaw the creation of new programs and resources that supported nonfiction filmmakers all over the world. 

Jackson transitioned to Festival director in February of 2020, just before the pandemic hit.

During the pandemic, two Festivals were hosted on a digital platform. This made for the most accessible Festival yet, according to the Sundance website. Following the digital festival experience, Sundance created an artistic and social platform online to reach a larger audience. 

“We are grateful to Tabitha and her contributions to the Sundance mission over the last eight and a half years as a leader at the organization,” said Joana Vicente.

“She helped lead the Sundance Film Festival through the ongoing pandemic, helping transform it for the future, all while keeping independent artists as our north star.

“There is no doubt that she has left her indelible imprint on the organization. She leaves us with the Festival never more vital than during this time of great change in our industry and in a place to continue to make a meaningful contribution to culture,” Vicente said.

Related reading:

Sundance Film Festival moves entirely online due to rising COVID cases

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