Sundance Film Festival brings back ‘Locals Package’ for Utah moviegoers — at a price

The Megaplex at The Gateway will be a festival venue for the first time, organizers announce.

(Trent Nelson | Salt Lake Tribune file photo) Snow falls on the Egyptian Theatre on Park City's Main Street during the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. The festival is preparing for its return to in-person screenings in 2023, after two years of online-only screenings because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Utah movie lovers will get an early chance to buy tickets to the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, after two years without in-person screenings in Utah — but they’ll pay a higher price than three years ago.

The return of the “Locals Package” is one of the ticket options the festival’s organizers, the nonprofit Sundance Institute, announced Tuesday. The institute also announced its plans for venues in Park City, Salt Lake City and the Sundance Mountain Resort for the festival, which starts in 120 days.

The “Locals Package,” available only to Utah residents, offers 10 tickets to in-person screenings at any Sundance venue during the festival’s entire run, Jan. 19-29 — with early access to ticket selection, before single-ticket sales begin.

The package includes two perks not previously available in similar locals-only offerings: The Explorer Pass, which allows access to the short films and Indie Episodic screenings available online Jan. 24-29, and priority access to live talks.

The price for the package is $650. That’s more than double the $300 Sundance charged for a similar package in 2020, the last year the festival convened in person before the COVID-19 pandemic began.

(Sundance Institute) The logo for the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, unveiled on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022.

Sundance is offering a variety of packages and passes that aren’t limited to Utah residents. They are:

Festival Package, for $750, which provides 10 tickets to in-person screenings, with early access to ticket selections before single-ticket sales begin. Includes Explorer Pass. (An online Festival Package, for Jan. 24-29, will be available for $300.)

Salt Lake City Pass, for $500 (or $250 for people between the ages of 18 and 25), allows access to any in-person screening in a Salt Lake City venue. Includes Explorer Pass.

Award Winners Package, for $250, gives access to eight screenings of the festival’s award winners on Jan. 28 and 29, the closing weekend. (Award winners will be announced Friday, Jan. 27.) Includes Explorer Pass benefits for those two days. The online version of this package costs $200.

Ignite Package, for $250, for moviegoers 18 to 25 years old, includes 10 tickets to in-person films between Jan. 22 and Jan. 27 with early access to ticket selection, as well as five free vouchers for online films, special entry to Ignite events, and Explorer Pass benefits for Jan. 22-27.

World Cinema Package, for $200, a new offering, provides 10 tickets to World Cinema films (including the award winners in those categories) for the festival’s full run, Jan. 19-29. The online version, valid Jan. 24-29, costs $150.

Single tickets for in-person screenings will be available for $25 each; individual tickets for online screenings are $20.

The Explorer Pass by itself, valid for access to short films and Indie Episodic programs online from Jan. 24 to 29, is $25.

Want to get an Express Pass, good to get into any screening? One must be a donor to the institute’s Sundance Circle, at a minimum of $10,000, to be eligible to buy one.

All ticket packages and passes go on sale to the public Oct. 17. Pre-sales begin Oct. 13 for the Utah locals package and for passes and packages available only to Sundance Institute members at the Storyteller ($2,500) and Supporter ($500) levels. Sundance Circle donors ($5,000 donation or higher) can start buying passes and packages on Oct. 4.

Online ticketing packages go on sale starting Dec. 13. Individual tickets go on sale to Sundance Institute members on Jan. 11, and to the public on Jan. 12.

The newest venue for the 2023 Sundance Film Festival is in Salt Lake City. The Megaplex Theatres at The Gateway, at 400 W. 200 South, will be a festival venue for the first time. All nine theaters at the Megaplex will be used for Sundance screenings.

Other Salt Lake City venues: Broadway Centre Cinemas, 111 E. 300 South; The Grand Theatre at Salt Lake Community College, 1575 S. State St.; and the Rose Wagner Center for the Performing Arts, 138 W. 300 South. (The Tower Theatre, a longtime Sundance venues in Salt Lake City, is still undergoing renovation.)

Eight venues will be open in Park City: Eccles Center Theatre, 1750 Kearns Blvd.; Egyptian Theatre, 328 Main St.; Holiday Village Cinemas, 1776 Park Ave.; Library Center Theatre, 1255 Park Ave; Park Avenue Theatre, in the DoubleTree Hilton Hotel Park City (formerly The Yarrow), 1800 Park Ave.; The Ray Theatre, 1768 Park Ave.; Redstone Cinemas, 6030 N. Market St.; and the Prospector Square Theatre, 2175 Sidewinder Drive.

Two traditional festival venues are not on the list for 2023: The MARC, at the Park City Municipal Athletic & Recreational Center (formerly known as the Racquet Club), and the Temple Theatre, in the Temple Har Shalom synagogue.

Screenings will also take place in the screening room at the Sundance Mountain Resort.

The non-screening venues in Park City are: Festival headquarters, in the Sheraton Park City, 1895 Sidewinder Drive; the main box office at the Gateway Center, 136 Heber Ave.; The Box at The Ray, 1768 Park Ave.; the Filmmaker Lodge in the Elks Lodge, 550 Main St.; and The Park, at 950 Iron Horse Drive.

There are two festival stores in Park City — at headquarters and at the Eccles Center Theatre — and one in Salt Lake City, at the Megaplex Gateway.