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ELI Utah Announces Four Sundance Film Festival Screenings

The Emerging Leaders Initiative of Utah is excited to announce ELI Utah x Sundance!

This year, ELI Utah is teaming up with the 2020 Sundance Film Festival! We invite you to join us to watch one of four of the festival's films that explore issues surrounding civic engagement and government.

Tickets to the screening are available no-cost, but limited to two tickets per registration. In order to give as many individuals as possible the opportunity to attend, ELI Utah ask that you register to attend one film only.

The Perfect Candidate
Sunday, January 26 at 3:45 PM | Broadway Cinema Centre

When Maryam, a hardworking young doctor in a small-town clinic, is prevented from flying to Dubai for a conference without a male guardian’s approval, she seeks help from a politically connected cousin, but inadvertently registers as a candidate for the municipal council. Maryam sees the election as a way to fix the muddy road in front of her clinic, but her campaign slowly garners broader appeal.

A challenge to Saudi patriarchy The Perfect Candidate is an amusing but biting reflection on women in a society that systematically marginalizes them. Al Mansour finds an inadvertent heroine in Maryam, who learns to run a campaign from a web article and creatively navigates a restriction barring her from addressing male voters directly. With spirit and authenticity, the film offers a rare glimpse into a still obscure society.

Coded Bias
Tuesday, January 28 at 7 PM | The Grand Theatre

Modern society sits at the intersection of two crucial questions: What does it mean when artificial intelligence (AI) increasingly governs our liberties? And what are the consequences for the people AI is biased against? When MIT Media Lab researcher Joy Buolamwini discovers that most facial-recognition software does not accurately identify darker-skinned faces and the faces of women, she delves into an investigation of widespread bias in algorithms. As it turns out, AI is not neutral, and women are leading the charge to ensure our civil rights are protected.

The Fight
Thursday, January 30 at 7 PM | The Grand Theatre

Seven days after President Trump’s inauguration, the country’s airports and courthouses were clogged with protesters fighting to protect immigrants facing deportation due to the administration’s “Muslim ban” policy. It was to be the opening a tsunami of civil liberty lawsuits waged against the Trump administration. What must it be like to be an ACLU lawyer in this day and age? When a mother is separated from her child, a soldier is threatened to lose his career, a young woman’s right to choose is imperiled at the pleasure of a government official, and the ability to exercise basic right to vote is threatened, the consequences can be devastating. The Fight follows the ACLU leaders who work to fulfill their organization's mission.

Boys State
Saturday, Feb. 1 at 12:45 PM | Broadway Cinema Centre

Strap up your saddle and get ready for a wild ride. Boys State is a political coming-of-age story, examining the health of American democracy through an unusual experiment: a thousand 17-year-old boys from across the state of Texas gather together to build a representative government from the ground up. High-minded ideals collide with low-down dirty tricks as four boys of diverse backgrounds and political views navigate the challenges of organizing political parties, shaping consensus, and campaigning for the highest office at Texas Boys State—governor.

Additional Event Information

  • The screening is free but ticketed. Tickets for ELI Utah x Sundance screenings are limited to one (1) film and two (2) tickets per registration. A waitlist will be also be available for each screening. 
  • Tickets will be distributed the day of the screening by ELI Utah. Details to follow. 
  • If you register for tickets, but are unable to attend, please notify ELI Utah at as soon as possible so we can offer the tickets to individuals on the wait list. 
  • Please be aware that all screenings are overbooked to ensure that the theater gets filled. What this means is that every seat is a first-come, first-served basis and a ticket does not guarantee that you will be able to see the film. ELI Utah recommends that people arrive at a minimum of 45 minutes early to ensure they get a seat. Sundance may have to turn people away if the theater fills up as they cannot allow people to stand in the theater.
  • Please note: Films in the Festival are not yet rated.

ELI Utah Disclaimer

The Emerging Leaders Initiative of Utah is a nonpartisan nonprofit. Views and opinions presented in any Sundance Film Festival films do not represent or reflect a position of ELI Utah in the issues explored in any screening.