Sundance Film Festival considers move to Atlanta, the 'Hollywood of the South’

The Hollywood of the South could host the largest independent film festival in the entire country. Atlanta city leaders are making their pitch to organizers of the Sundance Film Festival, which has always been held in Utah.  

Anyone who’s a film buff knows this could be a big deal for Atlanta. The city is now on the short list to host the prestigious festival.  

 "Atlanta has become a major part of the Hollywood story economically and culturally and also, it’s clear, this is one of the cultural epicenters of the United States of America," said Deadline Executive Editor Dominic Patten.  

That’s why Patten says the Hollywood of the South is a strong contender to host the nation’s largest independent film festival. He's reported the competition includes San Francisco, upstate New York, and Savannah.   

"Atlanta, unlike a lot of the other cities that might think they can get Sundance, has the infrastructure, has the theaters, has the screens, has the hotel rooms, has the airport," said Patten.  

Every January since 1985, Sundance has been in Park City, Utah and has been a pinnacle for independent and up-and-coming filmmakers.  

"There are a lot of big directors and a lot of big actors that get their starts and return to their roots year in and year out," said Patten.  

Last year, the festival sold nearly 140,000 tickets. More than 20,000 people came into the tiny Utah city from across the world, bringing more than $118 million with them.  

"You’re looking at the restaurants, you’re looking at the hotel occupancy, you’re looking at the prestige that comes as well," said Patten.  

Beginning on Tuesday until June 27, cities can submit proposals to Sundance to host the festival in 2027.