2021 Sundance Docs in Focus: LIFE IN A DAY 2020

Courtesy of Sundance Institute

Kevin Macdonald presents a crowdsourced look at life around the world on a single day during the pandemic.

Festival Section:
Special Screenings

Sundance Program Description:

Ten years after the 2011 Sundance Film Festival premiere of Life in a Day, award-winning director Kevin Macdonald returns to Sundance to present the story of another day on Earth: July 25, 2020. Following the concept of the original, Life in a Day 2020 is an extremely ambitious crowdsourced documentary, this one compiled from 15,000 hours of footage submitted from 192 countries and made in collaboration with YouTube and Ridley Scott’s RSA Films.

Social interaction was a tricky thing in 2020. In-person experiences were deemed unsafe, so we had to find new ways to gather and to stay connected. And this is exactly what Life in a Day 2020, an extraordinary collective effort, does: It unites individuals from around the world and creates a feeling of connectivity, a sense of belonging. Macdonald masterfully combines seemingly unrelated snapshots into beautiful stories—stories of love, loss, struggle, parenthood, and everything in between. It’s a very special “action” movie, a reminder that there’s real beauty in our everyday lives, even though it might not always seem that way.

Some Background:

Kevin Macdonald
Past Sundance docs:
Sky Ladder: The Art of Cai Guo-Qiang (2016)
SENNA (executive producer, 2011)

Macdonald won an Oscar for his first doc feature, ONE DAY IN SEPTEMBER, while his first fiction feature, THE LAST KING OF SCOTLAND, scored a best actor Oscar for Forest Whitaker. 

Jack Arbuthnott
Past Sundance docs:

Head of film, Scott Free Productions. Arbuthnott also produced Sundance fiction feature alum title LORDS OF CHAOS. Before joining the London branch of Ridley Scott’s production company, Arbuthnott was an executive at BBC Films.

Tim Partridge
Past Sundance docs:

Co-founder/creative director, Flying Object. The creative agency head previously held positions at YouTube, where the idea for the original documentary project was conceived.

Executive Producers:
Ridley Scott
Past Sundance docs:

Founder, RSA Films and Scott Free Productions. The multi-Oscar-nominated and Emmy-winning Scott has also previously executive produced or produced several Sundance fiction feature alumni projects, including NEWNESS, CYRUS, WELCOME TO THE RILEYS, STOKER, and THE EAST, and directed The Martian VR Experience.

Kai-Lu Hsiung
Global managing director, RSA Films. Hsiung also executive produced LORDS OF CHAOS.

More Info:
Meet the Artist

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Filed under Documentary, Film, Film Festivals, Recommendations, Sundance

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