Acura ‘House of Energy’ Advances Acura Presence at 2024 Sundance Film Festival
January 17, 2024
BY JOHN SMITH
January 16, 2024 — TORRANCE, CALIF.
- Acura returns as a Presenting Sponsor of the Sundance Film Festival and expands its mission to uplift independent artists and diverse voices in film
- ‘Acura House of Energy’ comes to Sundance Film Festival packed with exciting day-to-night entertainment programming on January 19 - 22
- Acura’s Sundance Film Festival programming includes film partnerships featuring Nora Fingscheidt’s The Outrun starring Saoirse Ronan, and Alessandra Lacorazza’s In The Summers starring Residente and co-hosted by The Latinx House; and programming partnerships with GLAAD, WIF, ASCAP and Gold House, and a collaboration with IMDb
- New all-electric 2024 Acura ZDX Type S performance SUV will be prominently featured inside the Acura House of Energy at Sundance Film Festival
Acura will bring new “energy” to its commitment to lift up independent artists and underrepresented voices in film with the Acura House of Energy as the Sundance Film Festival celebrates its 40th Edition and the Acura brand returns to Park City for the 14th year. As the Official Vehicle and one of the festival's longest running partners as a Presenting Sponsor, Acura is showcasing its dedication to highlighting like-minded nonprofit organizations and causes at Sundance Film Festival 2024, such as GLAAD, Women in Film and Gold House by providing a platform for creative partners to shine a light on important initiatives.
Acura Festival Programming Highlights
Acura’s efforts will be brought to life through engaging programming and the independent spirit of Sundance Film Festival’s filmmakers whose innovative thinking and power of imaginative storytelling will be on full display.
For 2024, Acura’s newly redesigned and fully integrated Sundance Film Festival venue offers day-to-night engaging entertainment programming. The Acura House of Energy opens Jan. 19, where the performance brand will host interviews, panels, mixers and premiere parties with A-list actors, writers and directors, offer daily refreshments and feature live music from their house DJ.
Acura has partnered with the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) for the 26th Annual Sundance ASCAP Music Café. This year’s Café will feature exclusive sets from some of today’s most exciting songwriters, plus insightful conversations with the composers and filmmakers of some of this year’s most anticipated films.
Acura will once again host The IMDb Studio at the Acura House of Energy where IMDb will capture exclusive content with leading actors, writers and directors that will serve as the cornerstone of Sundance Film Festival coverage on IMDb.
Acura House of Energy at Sundance Film Festival
Evoking some of Acura’s real world test tracks, development areas and the next-gen Acura dealerships, the Acura House of Energy at the Sundance Film Festival is a vibrantly-colored, bright and premium space dedicated to the art of driving, Acura’s all-electric future and Precision Crafted Performance DNA. At the House of Energy, Acura will introduce the creative community to the new all-electric 2024 ZDX Type S, the quickest and most powerful SUV Acura has ever made, featuring the first-ever Acura Bang and Olufsen audio system. The 2024 ZDX Type S will feature a special graphic installation wrap in collaboration with Miami artist, HOXXOH.
Visitors at Acura’s House of Energy will explore an immersive footprint that is divided into unique areas that each amplify a key discipline of Acura’s ethos and are featured in the newly-debuted Unlock the Energy 2024 ZDX marketing campaign. The new Acura launch campaign is led by a cinematic-style short film, set in the Acura House of Energy, that celebrates the new ZDX and Acura performance as the brand embarks on an all-electric future.
As Presenting Sponsor of the 2024 Sundance Film Festival, the 2024 MDX and MDX Type S performance SUVs will serve as Official Vehicle of the Festival. More than 100 Acura SUVs will transport filmmakers, talent, festival jurors and Sundance Institute staff around the Festival. In addition, Acura’s lineup of performance sport-utility vehicles will be on display throughout Park City, including the 2024 MDX Type S Advance and MDX A-Spec, 2024 RDX A-Spec Advance and the all-new, all-electric 2024 Acura ZDX Type S.
The Acura House of Energy is located at 550 Swede Alley. Public hours: Friday, January 19 through Monday, January 22 from 12 to 6pm (subject to change).
2024 Schedule of Acura Sundance Film Festival Programming
FRIDAY, JANUARY 19TH
- 12:00pm - 1:00pm MT - IMDbPro and Prime Video Panel: Intentionally Intersectional
- A discussion between community leaders about authentic and inclusive representation in the entertainment industry and the growing emphasis on showcasing characters with intersectional identities. The panelists are Nic Novicki, founder and director of the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge; Alex Schmider, producer and director of transgender representation at GLAAD; Lipica Shah, actor and co-founder of 1497; and Andria Wilson Mirza, director of ReFrame. Moderated by Latasha Gillespie, global head of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility for Amazon MGM Studios, Prime Video, and Freevee, with an introduction from Col Needham, founder and CEO of IMDb.
- 2:00pm - 5:00pm MT - INVITE ONLY - Cheers, Queers Presented by GLAAD, Frameline and NewFest
- 2:00pm - 3:30pm MT - “Queer Film Is Activism” Panel
- Hear from filmmakers, activists, festival organizers, and advocates on what it means to create space for authentic representation and gather audiences together to celebrate and amplify our stories. Featuring panelists Alok Vaid-Menon (Author, Poet, Comedian & Public Speaker), filmmaker Alex Hedison (director, ALOK), Allegra Madsen (Director of Programming at Frameline), David Hatkoff (Executive Director at NewFest), DaShawn Usher (Director of Communities of Color at GLAAD), and Natalie Jasmine Harris (director, GRACE), moderated by Anthony Allen Ramos (Vice President of Communications and Talent at GLAAD). This event is co-hosted by IMDbPro.
- 3:30pm - 5:00pm MT - Toast + Networking Mixer
- 9:00pm - 12:00am MT - INVITE ONLY - The Outrun Premiere Party
- Acura will host the Official Premiere Party for The Outrun, the new film from Nora Fingscheidt starring Saoirse Ronan and Paapa Essiedu. After living life on the edge in London, Rona attempts to come to terms with her troubled past. She returns to the wild beauty of Scotland’s Orkney Islands — where she grew up — hoping to heal. Adapted from the bestselling memoir by Amy Liptrot.
SATURDAY, JANUARY 20TH
- 11:00am - 12:00pm MT - INVITE ONLY - WIF Brunch Celebrating Women, Nonbinary and Trans Filmmakers
- 1:00pm - 2:00pm MT - IMDbPro Panel: Filmmaking in Focus
- A discussion between independent filmmakers about their creative process, career journeys, and how IMDbPro empowers them to advance their careers. The panelists are Nico Casavecchia (Border Hopper), Alex Stapleton (God Save Texas: The Price of Oil), and Sean Wang (Dìdi (弟弟)), and Lana Wilson (Look Into My Eyes). Moderated by Tre Wesley, video producer for IMDb, with an introduction from Nikki Santoro, chief operating officer of IMDb.
- 2:00pm - 4:00pm MT - WIF Panels
- 2:00pm - 2:45pm MT: The New World Cinema: Exploring Gender Equity in Film through a Global Lens
- Join WIF for a conversation with the filmmakers behind some of the year's most talked-about international feature films, representing the broad diversity of perspectives and experiences that illuminate the state of independent storytelling around the globe. Panelists include 2024 Sundance Film Festival filmmakers: Amrou Al-Kadhi (director, Layla), Klaudia Reynicke (director, Reinas), Shuchi Talati (director, Girls Will Be Girls) and Raha Amirfazli (co-director, In the Land of Brothers), moderated by Andria Wilson Mirza (Director of Sundance Institute and WIF's ReFrame Project).
- 3:00pm - 3:45pm MT: Independent Women: How Indie Filmmakers are Bringing Transformative Approaches to Hollywood
- Recent years have seen women directors and producers with breakout independent film hits make the jump to big budgets and big studios. Learn about how they are bringing their progressive and inclusive approaches, cultivated in the independent film world, into Hollywood in this intimate conversation moderated by CEO of WIF, Kirsten Schaffer. Panelists include: Sydney Freeland (Sundance Alum and Executive Producer/Director of Marvel's Echo), Lana Wilson (Director of Miss Americana; Brooke Shields: Pretty Baby; 2024 Sundance Selection Look Into My Eyes), Fawzia Mirza (Director, The Queen of My Dreams), and Ally Pankiw (Director, Netflix’s Black Mirror, Hulu’s The Great), and more to be announced.
- 7:00pm - 11:00pm MT - DJ Performances
- 7:00pm - 9:00pm MT: DJ Cardi
- 9:15pm - 10:45pm MT: Coco & Breezy
SUNDAY, JANUARY 21ST
- 12:00pm - 1:00pm MT - IMDbPro Panel
- A discussion with The American Society of Magical Negroes writer and director Kobi Libii and lead actors Justice Smith and David Alan Grier about their film’s journey from script to the Sundance Film Festival. The film is a fresh, satirical comedy about a young man, Aren, who is recruited into a secret society of magical Black people who dedicate their lives to a cause of utmost importance: making white people’s lives easier. Moderated by Tre Wesley, video producer for IMDb, with an introduction from Nikki Santoro, chief operating officer of IMDb.
- 2:00pm - 6:00pm MT - ASCAP Programming
- The Sundance ASCAP Music Café kicks off with ASCAP Screen Time, its interview series about the craft and business of music for screens. The first exclusive conversation features Bronx rap artist and As We Speak film subject Kemba, who will join the film’s producer/director J.M. Harper in discussion and perform an a capella song featured in the film.
- A second ASCAP Screen Time conversation takes place with composer Nathan Halpern and producer/director Josh Greenbaum, who will discuss their highly anticipated documentary Will & Harper, an intimate portrayal of friendship, transition, and America that follows Will Ferrell and his best buddy of thirty years on a cross-country road trip.
- The Sundance ASCAP Music Café continues with performances by independent singer-songwriter Evan Bartels, Americana supergroup Fantastic Cat, and Nigerian-American singer-songwriter Ogi.
- 8:00pm - 11:00pm MT - INVITE ONLY - In The Summers Film Celebration co-hosted by The Latinx House
- Acura will host a celebration for Alessandra Lacorazza’s drama In The Summers, starring René Pérez Joglar (Residente), Sasha Calle, Lío Mehiel, Leslie Grace, Emma Ramos, and Sharlene Cruz. On a journey that spans the formative years of their lives, two sisters navigate their loving but volatile father during their yearly summer visits to his home in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
MONDAY, JANUARY 22ND
- 12:00pm - 1:00pm MT - Gold House Panel: Investing in Independent Storytelling
- This panel explores how multicultural filmmakers creatively navigate the business side of independent filmmaking, including the unique challenges and opportunities filmmakers face in obtaining financing and securing distribution deals. We will bring prominent business leaders and creatives together in a discussion of how we can ensure that diverse and independent stories can continue to push culture forward. Panelists include: Nina Yang Bongiovi (Producer & Founder, Significant Productions), Carlos Lopez Estrada, (Producer & Founder, Antigravity Academy), Kyle Bowser (SVP, NAACP Hollywood Bureau) and Abraham Bengio (Agent, WME Independent). Moderated by: Christine Yi, GM of Gold House Creative Equity Fund.
- 2:00pm - 6:00pm MT - ASCAP Programming
- The Sundance ASCAP Music Café continues with an exclusive ASCAP Screen Time conversation featuring composer Robert Aiki Aubrey Lowe and Union co-directors Brett Story and Stephen Maing on scoring their documentary about the formation of the Amazon Labor Union.
- Evan Bartels and Ogi return to the Sundance ASCAP Music Café stage. Later, the Café closes with a performance by the DIG! XX Dandy Jonestown Revue, featuring members of the Dandy Warhols and Brian Jonestown Massacre, the dueling rock bands featured in the 20th anniversary edition of the film, DIG! XX, which premieres at this year’s festival. (DIG! won the Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Award for a documentary in 2004.)