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Salt Lake City, get ready to get up in arms because at the advice of film director Sydney Pollack, the Utah/US Film Festival is moving its previously scheduled festival in Salt Lake City this September to Park City. It will now occur in January.

The intent is that by moving the festival to a ski resort town in the middle of winter it will assist in getting a larger attendance rate and boost the interest of Hollywood.  That seems counter-productive to a festival that’s supposed to acknowledge the independent filmmaker.

The festival is only its third year, but is only one of a handful of stateside film festivals to focus solely on the product of American filmmakers, currently all from the mid-East region.  In its first year it failed to make any kind of bang and lost considerable money for its investors, but last year’s numbers were a significant improvement, and they’re hoping that this move to Park City will allow them to bank on the profitability of the town’s winter-time popularity.

At this time a lineup has yet to be announced for the competition films, which isn’t much of a surprise considering they now have almost a full year before opening night – and still no word on who will be this/next year’s recipient of the Frank Capra award, which was given to Hollywood acting legend Jimmy Stewart in its first year.

Let’s just hope that the extra time gives organizer Robert Redford and company some assistance in landing some interesting films and picking a worthy recipient for an award that bears the name of the creator of It’s A Wonderful Life.  More so, let’s hope that one of these days the festival is big enough for mainstream press to cover, or would that also be counter-productive to celebrating the independent filmmaker?

Either way, we’ll be there enjoying the slopes and some hopefully great undiscovered talent.

What do you folks think? Good move? Bad move? Dance move?

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