Sundance 2017: The Hottest Parties and Most Anticipated Movies

It’s that time of year again, when big stars descend upon a small mountain resort town in Utah to celebrate independent filmmaking, raise awareness of important causes and party hard on Main Street (thin oxygen, be damned!). And the 33rd edition of the Sundance Film Festival, which starts January 19 in Park City, Utah, promises to be extra-buzzy, as Jay Z, Anne Hathaway, Jon Hamm, Casey Affleck, Kristen Stewart, Chelsea Handler and more A-listers plan to stop by to promote their latest projects. Us Weekly will be there to cover it all. Until then, here’s the VIP cheat sheet:

Casey Affleck and Jon Hamm
Casey Affleck and Jon Hamm attend An Artist at the Table: cocktails and dinner program benefit during 2016 Sundance Film Festival. Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images

The Movies!

The Yellow Birds — Jennifer Aniston stars in this drama about two American soldiers (Alden Ehrenreich and Tye Sheridan) struggling to survive while fighting in the Iraq War. In a rare serious turn, Aniston plays Sheridan’s mom.

An Inconvenient Sequel — Timing really is everything. On the eve of Donald Trump’s inauguration, former VP Al Gore will present a follow-up to his Oscar-winning climate-change documentary, An Inconvenient Truth.

A Ghost Story — Future Best Actor Oscar nominee Casey Affleck is determined to stick to his indie roots. He stars alongside Rooney Mara in this thriller about a house and, yes, the ghost that haunts it.

To the Bone Lily Collins is a teen battling anorexia; Keanu Reeves is her doctor. The familiar tale will surely have an intriguing spin, as it’s written and directed by Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Private Practice and UnREAL showrunner Marti Noxon.

Sundance Film Festival
Sundance Film Festival Amanda Edwards/Getty Images

The Parties!

Tao’s Park City pop-up, presented by Tequila Don Julio, will be open the first weekend of the festival and feature Devin Lucien, DJ Ruckus and surprise performances. Kristen Stewart, Dave Franco, Joe Jonas and Diplo have all stopped by in recent years, and it’s known to get a little wild. (Think models, bottles and celebs dancing on tables.)

Chase Sapphire on Main will serve as the afterparty spot for the film Yellow Birds, starring Jennifer Aniston, Tye Sheridan and Toni Collette. The lounge offers a cozy lodge vibe, complete with fireplace in the VIP area.

Celebrity chefs such as Shawn McClain and Cat Cora will create five- to seven-course tasting menus for ChefDance, a nightly invite-only sit-down dinner at the Memorial building in Park City. Cora’s dinner on January 23 will benefit Operation Smile.

Rock & Reilly’s is usually so bustling at night, people will wait outside in subzero temperatures just to get in! This year, it’s the site of the Getaway premiere party, hosted by Kate Upton and her fiancé Justin Verlander (presented by BMW & Golf Digest Studios), as well as the J.Crew-, Vulture- and New York magazine-hosted “Person to Person” party.

Chrissy Teigen and John Legend
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend attend Samsung Studio and Harvey Weinstein Host Annual Weinstein Sundance Bowl Football Party During The Sundance Film Festival 2016. Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

John Legend will host a party for the second season of his WGN America show Underground on Saturday, January 21, at the Riverhorse on Main. Last year, Legend and a pregnant Chrissy Teigen were bumping and grinding in the VIP area until late night!

Amazon Studios will be hosting a party for Long Strange Trip, a documentary about the Grateful Dead on Sunday, January 22nd, at The Spur Bar and Grill. The party will feature a performance by Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann and Bob Weir

PepsiCo Creators League Studio and NYC hot spot Kola House to bring Park City a venue for some major movie afterparties. PepsiCo Creators League Studio will be hosting for Matt Bomer, Nick Offerman and Sam Elliott, and also feature a late-night party to celebrate Major Lazer’s Give Me Future which is guaranteed to last into the wee hours of the morning.

Nylon magazine and Dream will host the Nylon X Dream Hollywood Apre Ski party, which will bring all the cool kids together for a rooftop bash. Past celeb attendees have included Nick and Joe Jonas.

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The Events and Lounges!

Women power! On January 21, Chelsea Handler will lead 20,000 people down Main Street in the Women’s March on Main. The march, which supports women’s rights, civil liberties and diversity, will coincide with several other women’s marches that day across the country. Handler will be joined by Salma Hayek, Sarah Paulson, Elizabeth Olsen and thousands of protesters. The march will begin at 9 a.m. in front of the Wasatch Brew Pub. The event will conclude with a rally hosted by Handler herself.

The Acura Studio will host premiere parties and dinners for movies including Fun Mom Dinner, starring Adam Scott, Molly Shannon and Toni Collette, and always features selfie-ready fans outside trying to get a picture with their favorite stars. Expect to see Jon Hamm, Geena Davis and many more speaking in the studio!

Snack time! Those covering Sundance rarely find time to sit down for an actual meal, so Park City Live Presents: The Hub will be treating guests to a Tanqueray Gin and Juice Bar, where guests can enjoy spiked or nonspiked pressed juices as well as deconstructed grilled cheese and marinara meatballs, and even get beauty and hair touchups from top stylists while they snack!

The RAND Luxury Lounge at the St. Regis hotel is a celebrity favorite! Celebs and invited guests can view the most high-end goods that will be unveiled at Sundance. Featured this year will be the 360fly camera and LightStim LED therapy products, and several other big-ticket items. Anne Hathaway and Jason Sudeikis will also host a brunch for their movie Colossal on Sunday, January 22.

AT&T’s is taking over the historic Village at The Lift this Sundance and will be hosting after-hours events including an L.A. Times private movie party, along with separately curated private movie dinners with celeb favorite hotspot, Nobu. 

Giving back! Variety Studio at Sundance will, as usual, feature video interviews with the top talent at Sundance, and this year the studio is joined by the amazing Australian biscuit Tim Tam, who will be donating $10,000 to benefit the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles for the talent’s participation!

IMDb will host a lounge that features actor/director Kevin Smith interviewing all the stars in Park City. On January 23, Game of Thrones star Peter Dinklage will receive IMDb’s STARmeter award, which recognizes stars who are constantly searched on IMDb.

The Kia Supper Suite will be hosting several sit-down dinners for different casts. Some celebs to watch out for there are Connie Britton and Laura Prepon, who will be honored during the annual Creative Coalition’s Spotlight Initiative Awards Dinner on Monday, January 23.

Creative types will find a home at Facebook, Instagram and Oculus at the Oculus House, where guests will test out the latest VR demos and meet the partnership teams behind the technology. The event will take place at the house on Main Street in the early evening of January 24.

The Stella Artois Filmmaker Lounge will be hosting filmmakers and actors for a series of interactive panels for celebs including Judd Apatow and Ray Romano

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