Here’s how the Blackhouse Foundation will go virtual at 2021 Sundance Film Festival

Events will highlight 'The United States vs. Billie Holiday,' 'P-Valley,' and more

Even though the 2021 Sundance Film Festival will be a little different this year, there’s still a ton to look forward to as the annual event goes virtual amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

This year, The Blackhouse Foundation is committed to curating incredible events, conversations, and programming throughout the festival’s run from January 28-February 3, 2021.

Read More: 51 percent of 2021 Sundance Film Festival selections from artists of color

As usual, Blackhouse is focused on facilitating conversations that highlight important projects, trends, and changes for people of color in the film and television space. This year, they’re tackling several timely issues affecting our communities.

Here are a few events we won’t want to miss:

Thursday, January 28

Black Entertainment Critics Kickoff

Blackhouse Foundation virtual events at Sundance Film Festival

11:00 AM-12:00 PM: The Blackhouse Foundation welcomes press partners and Black entertainment critics to a special event to kick off the opening of the festival. This event is invitation only.

Facebook Shorts Directors’ Roundtable

4:00 PM-5:00 PM: Join Blackhouse and its presenting sponsor, Facebook, in a deep dive conversation with the directors behind a selection of Sundance’s hottest Black short films. We will reflect on the stories behind their buzzed-about films and their paths to the 2021 Sundance Film Festival. 

Friday, January 29

 STARZ Presents: P-Valley and the Art of Choreography

4:00 PM-5:00 PM: Travis Payne interviews the choreographer and actresses from the hit STARZ series.

Moderator: Travis Payne (Choreographer, Director, & Producer)

Panelists: Jamaica Craft (Choreographer), and actresses Brandee Evans, Skyler Joy and Elarica Johnson.

Saturday, January 30

POC Filmmakers Panel

10:00 AM-11:00 AM: Blackhouse, Muslim House, The Latinx House, Native and IllumiNative, the Asian Pacific Filmmakers Experience, and MACRO Lodge will come together to present a multi-ethnic, multi-racial panel highlighting the 2021 Sundance Film Festival’s BIPOC directors.

The panel will reflect on the importance of unity and authentic representation through a discussion of the directors’ Sundance films, the intersections between their projects, and each director’s journey to Sundance in this landmark age of pandemic and potential renewal.  

Moderated by Tabitha Jackson, Director of the Sundance Film Festival.

United For Equality Scripted Event

12:00 PM-1:00 PM: At the 2021 Virtual Sundance Film Festival, the Blackhouse Foundation and Strayer University demonstrate the importance of using cinematic storytelling to improve student outcomes in higher education. 

OWN‘s Art of Black Storytelling & Representation

2:00 PM-3:00 PM: Join OWN‘s president Tina Perry, series showrunners Dee Harris-Lawrence (Peabody Award-winning “David Makes Man”) and Anthony Sparks (Image Award-winning “Queen Sugar”) as well as “(In)Visible Portrait’s” filmmaker/thought-leader, Oge Egbuonu, for an engaging conversation centered on the uniquity of OWN’s prestige programming.

From a Peabody award-winning series to a documentary acquisition, the panelists will share how their respective projects contribute to the network’s compelling Black storytelling vision and art form.

The United States Vs. Billie Holiday

4:00 PM-5:00 PM: In The United States vs. Billie Holiday, Lee Daniels tackles the untold story of the Jazz singer’s civil rights activism. Join us as Janaya Future Khan (Black Lives Matter Toronto, Founder) moderates a can’t-miss discussion with Andra Day, Lee Daniels, Jordan Fudge, and Da’vine Joy Randolph about the film and Billie Holiday‘s legacy. 

Sunday, January 31

Sunday Brunch with SEEN Black Filmmakers

10:00 AM-12:00 PM: Join Blackhouse and its presenting sponsor, Facebook, for a brunch celebrating the SEEN Black Filmmakers program and featuring Black chefs to help you cook from you home.

Take a “seat” at one of the virtual brunch tables hosted by some of the future filmmakers and designed to create community while recreating the feeling of being back on Main Street in Park City, Utah, with all of your friends from the Blackhouse.

Facebook Presents: The Future of Black Stories in a COVID World

12:00 PM-1:00 PM: COVID shut down our industry, and we are still on a journey to reopening. As we wait to see what the future holds, this moment puts us at a crossroads. When the world opens back up, where will Black stories and storytellers find themselves in this restarted Hollywood? Do we risk losing ground on the progress we’ve been working towards these past years when we come back on set? 

Looking Forward: The Future of Crime Television

4:00 PM-5:00 PM: A year after the release of the groundbreaking research study, Normalizing Injustice, join Color Of Change Hollywood, join these panelists for a discussion about progress, the future of crime TV, and how we can use storytelling to reflect the reality of the criminal justice system in this country.

This conversation will include an examination of the power of media to impact culture and an exploration of opportunities to affect change moving forward.

Read More: Sundance adds Coogler-produced ‘Judas and the Black Messiah’

The 2021 Sundance Film Festival kicks off on Thursday, January 28. Tickets are available for purchase here.

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