(Courtesy Sundance Film Festival)

Sundance Institute, the global, nonprofit arts organization, today announced that the 20th anniversary of Richard Linklater’s seminal indie film Slacker has been selected as the special 2011 Sundance Film Festival From the Collection screening. The Institute, which, with the UCLA Film and Television Archive, created The Sundance Collection at UCLA to preserve and restore independent films, also announced a new program, Collector’s Circle, where for the first time Institute supporters are given the opportunity to directly impact the acquisition and preservation process.

Established in 1997, The Sundance Collection at UCLA (The Collection) broke new ground by becoming the first archive devoted specifically to the preservation of documentaries, narratives, shorts, festival films, and commercially released independent films. It is part of a larger Institute initiative designed to engage independent film and theatre artists, enhance public knowledge, maintain an exhaustive record of the artists and work supported through the Institute's Labs and the Film Festival since 1981, and ultimately to create and sustain an inclusive artistic community. In addition to The Collection, similar initiatives include the Sundance Institute's Alumni Initiative, and The Sundance Institute Archive.

To reflect the current needs of Sundance Institute and these initiatives, the new Collector’s Circle brings opportunities for enhanced engagement on behalf of Institute supporters to raise the visibility for and awareness of independent film preservation. With an annual contribution of $10,000, members of the Collector's Circle will help the Institute choose films to be added to the Sundance Collection at UCLA. At the Festival, members will also be invited to a special From the Collection screening followed by a private dinner with Festival Director John Cooper.

“In many ways Slacker is the perfect Collection film,” said Cooper. “It launched a brilliant career, inspired an entire generation of filmmakers and paved the way for countless others. People don’t necessarily think about preservation for newer films, and we are working to change that. What would it mean for our industry and for our culture if prints like these didn’t exist?”

A newly struck preservation print of Slacker will screen on Monday, January 24 at the Egyptian Theatre in Park City. Director Richard Linklater is expected to introduce the film and attend the Q&A, hosted by Festival Director John Cooper, along with other special guests. The Sundance Film Festival will run January 20-30, 2010 in Park City, Salt Lake City, Ogden, and Sundance, Utah. Tickets are available at http://www.sundance.org/festival/tickets.

About the film:
Slacker/USA 1991 (Director and screenwriter: Richard Linklater. Cast: Richard Linklater; Marc James; Stella Weir; John Slater; Louis Mackey). Praising the film in the Chicago Sun Times in 1991, Roger Ebert wrote, Slacker is “a movie with an appeal almost impossible to describe, although the method of the director, Richard Linklater, is as clear as day.”

The Sundance Collection at UCLA has grown to nearly 1000 titles, generously donated by individual filmmakers and eight founding donors: Fine Line Features, Gramercy Pictures, Miramax, New Line Cinema, October Pictures, Sony Pictures Classics, Strand Releasing, Zeitgeist Films and Trimark Pictures. To supplement its growing library of films, the Collection also features a rare assemblage of data on the history of independent cinema. Filmmakers can visit http://www.sundance.org/archives/collection/ to learn more about donating their work to the Sundance Collection at UCLA.