that's entertainment

Sundance Film Festival Sponsors are Back in Force

Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 20, 2012 11:01 AM

The annual indie-film extravaganza known as the Sundance Film Festival got underway Thursday night in Park City, Utah, and the New York Times noticed something there that had been missing at recent fests: many corporate sponsors.

Eight brands are officially sponsoring this year's festival, which launched as an offshoot of Robert Redford's Sundance Institute in 1978: Adobe, GE, Sprint, Yahoo!, Bertolli, Grey Goose, Time Warner, and Hilton. Last year, the festival had two — Honda and Trident — and neither of them are back.

“We’re very fortunate,” said Keri Putnam, executive director of the Sundance Institute, to the Times. “At the recession’s lowest point, we did see a bit of dip in sponsorships.” So how much does it run to be on that list? “Most” of these sponsors pay in the “six-figure range,” a Sundance spokesperson told the paper.

There are plenty of other brands present, of course, including Bing, the “Official Search Engine of the Sundance Film Festival,” as well as Ford, W Residences, T-Mobile, 7 for All Mankind jeans, Tic Tac mints, Solstice sunglasses, Patrón tequila, and Ultimat vodka. Presenting sponsors include HP, Acura and Chase.

Instagram is partnering with the festival to encourage photo-sharing, while Kenneth Cole is sponsoring SFF volunteers' jackets (below). And don't forget all the brand logos and products via the swag in the loot bags that celebrities are picking up in "gifting suites" and at various brand-sponsored parties and events during the festival.

Also getting a lift from the festival, of course: the Sundance brand, including the Sundance Institute, the festival itself, and the TV channel, the ad-free cable network that Redford co-founded in 1996 and which was acquired by Cablevision's AMC Networks 12 years later. 

[images via Instagram, Sundance]

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