×

Sundance Film Festival 2019 Generated $182 Million in Economic Impact for Utah (Study)

The 2019 Sundance Film Festival generated $182.5 million in economic impact for the state of Utah, declining 4.7% from last year, according to a study released on Wednesday.

The 11-day festival attracted more than 122,000 attendees from 48 states and 35 foreign countries, a drop of about 2,900 from 2018. The studies on both years were conducted by Y2 Analytics.

The study also determined that the 2019 festival generated more than $18.6 million in state and local tax revenue; supported 3,052 jobs; and generated $94 million in Utah wages. The festival’s five-year cumulative total since 2015 amounts to $681.5 million, with more than $66.7 million in state and local tax revenue generated and over 11,900 jobs supported.

“Since its founding, the Sundance Film Festival has become an important part of the cultural and economic fabric of Utah,” said Governor Gary Herbert. “Utah is a great destination for tourists year round, but during the Festival we really get to engage in the worlds of film and the arts. We appreciate our ongoing partnership with Sundance Institute”

Of the 2019 attendees, over 43,500 came from out-of-state, contributing $170.6 million of the total impact.

“On top of our exciting screenings and live programming, the Sundance Film Festival is proud to bring an increasingly wide and diverse audience from around the globe to Utah each year to support both our artists and our home state,” said Betsy Wallace, managing director of Sundance Institute. “We’re grateful for our
audiences’ dedication, as well as the wide-ranging benefits that they bring, especially in allowing us to showcase the state of Utah to the world.”

Robert Redford launched the festival in 1978 in Salt Lake City, Utah. It moved to Park City in 1981, when Redford founded the non-profit Sundance Institute to support independent filmmakers.

About 122,313 attendees filled 229,242 seats at events over the course of the festival. An estimated 64% of attendees were Utah residents, while about 37% of non-residents came from California, 10% from New York, 5% from Texas, 5% from Illinois, 4% from Florida, 3% from Colorado, 3% from Massachusetts and 33% from other states.

The survey also found that 93% of non-resident attendees reported attending multiple days of the festival, with 62% of non-residents staying between two and five days. Additionally, it noted that out-of-state festival-goers tended to come from relatively high-income households with 32% of non-resident respondents reporting a household income of $300,000 or more.

Resident attendees also tended to come from relatively high-income households in Utah with the most common income category for Utah residents being $100,000 to $199,999 per year.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Pedro Costa’s 'Vitalina Varela' Wins at

    Pedro Costa’s 'Vitalina Varela' Triumphs at Locarno Film Festival

    The 72nd Locarno Film Festival drew to a close Saturday with Portuguese auteur Pedro Costa’s dark and detached film “Vitalina Varela” coming away with several awards together with superlatives from segments of the hardcore cinephile crowd, including jury president Catherine Breillat. In announcing the Golden Leopard prize for the film, as well as best actress [...]

  • Vitalina Varela

    Locarno Film Review: 'Vitalina Varela'

    Frequently beautiful compositions and the theatrical use of a fierce kind of artifice have long been the hallmarks of Portuguese auteur Pedro Costa, regarded by a small but influential group of aesthetes as one of the great filmmakers of our era. For those in tune with his vision, the director’s films offer an exciting lesson [...]

  • Notre dame

    Locarno Film Review: 'Notre dame'

    Not to be too cynical about it, but might the recent horrific fire in Paris’ cathedral attract audiences to a film in which the gothic gem plays a major role? It’s likely a wiser marketing strategy than promoting the unrelenting silliness of Valerie Donzelli’s oh-so-kooky comedy “Notre dame,” the writer-director-star’s return to contemporary Paris following [...]

  • Nordisk Film & TV Fond Announces

    Nordisk Film & TV Fond Backs Joachim Trier, Ole Bornedal, Yellow Bird

    Nordisk Film & TV Fond has announced three features, two series and a documentary set to receive $1.4m in financing, as well as distribution, dubbing and cultural initiative support recipients. Doing so, it highlights some of the key titles moving forward in the Nordic region. Already backed by the Danish Film Institute’s largest ever grant [...]

  • Cat in the Wall Movie Sarajevo

    Sarajevo Film Festival Builds Bridges Through Art

    Rising from the rubble of the Bosnian War to become one of Southeastern Europe’s leading film and TV industry events, the Sarajevo Film Festival has plenty to celebrate as it marks its 25th edition this year. The festival was established in 1995 during the four-year siege of Sarajevo as part of an effort to help [...]

  • 'ZZ Top: That Little Ol' Band

    Film Review: 'ZZ Top: That Little Ol' Band From Texas'

    Settling in to watch “ZZ Top: That Little Ol’ Band From Texas,” you may have a burning question that applies to almost no other rock documentary, and that is: Who, exactly, are these guys? The ones behind the beards? If you’re old enough, of course, you probably know that ZZ Top started out, in 1969, [...]

  • Patricia Louisiana Knop Dead: Screenwriter Was

    Screenwriter Patricia Louisianna Knop Dies at 78

    Screenwriter Patricia Louisianna Knop, who collaborated with her producer-director husband Zalman King on erotically-charged films of the late 1980s and 1990s including “Siesta” and “9 1/2 Weeks,” died Aug. 7 in Santa Monica after a lengthy illness. “9 1/2 Weeks,” starring Mickey Rourke and Kim Basinger, was directed by Adrian Lyne, co-produced by King and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content