NRDC Impact Lounge: Sundance Film Festival 2020

For NRDC IMPACT LOUNGE 2021 Sundance Film Festival programming, click here.

You're Invited

to the NRDC Impact Lounge

2020 Sundance Film Festival
825 Main St
Park City, UT 84060

Friday, January 24 - Monday, January 27th

11am - 5pm daily
Coffee and smoothies served from 11am - 3pm daily

You are invited to join us in the NRDC IMPACT LOUNGE at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival as we explore the power of storytelling to shift cultural narratives, build social movements, and create long term impact. NRDC is fighting for a world with clean air, safe water, and a livable planet for all.

NRDC knows that storytelling can change the world. We have seen time and again that films and television have used the power of storytelling to address serious global issues and help accelerate social progress. That’s why NRDC is launching Rewrite the Future at the Sundance Film Festival, a new initiative to work with filmmakers on telling more & varied climate stories to help change our cultural narrative about climate. 


The NRDC IMPACT LOUNGE will feature....

  • NRDC will host compelling live programs in partnership with Entertainment Weekly, “EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series,” that will feature some of the Festival’s most anticipated film talent and highlight some of the films that are pushing our understanding of the world around us. See below for more information.
  • The space will feature a gallery of specially curated activist artwork by Studio Number One and their creative director, artist Shepard Fairey that focuses on the environment, activism, and movement building, illustrating the power of art to tell stories, empower individual action, and create impact at a global scale.
  • In collaboration with NowThis series “One Small Step”; NowThis will record short video clips with celebrities telling us their commitments for how they are taking “one small step” to tackle waste and sustainability. We will ask everyone the same question: What is the one small step you are going to do this year to live a more sustainable life? Visitors to the space will write their commitments on seed paper, and add them up on our wall of collective actions. Following the Festival, the seed paper will be planted locally in Park City.
  • Collectible sets of environmental and activist-themed buttons will be on display and guests can participate in button-making workshops to create activist buttons of their own.
  • The gallery will also offer a coffee barista bar, superfood smoothie station, and a lounge with access to WiFi.

NRDC Credentials are required to visit the NRDC IMPACT LOUNGE, available for pick up starting at 11am on Friday, January 24th.

Live Programming Series

Note: Panel programming events are subject to schedule change and first come, first served. A NRDC IMPACT LOUNGE credential does not guarantee access to programming. Separate RSVP is required for receptions.


Friday, January 24

12:00pm – 1:00pm
The Atlantic at Sundance: A Film Talk with Boys State
The definition of masculinity seems to be contracting, and teenagers need—and want—a better answer for how to be a man today. While The Atlantic’s most recent cover story, "The Miseducation of the American Boy," considers how we might better serve young men, the documentary Boys State showcases an unusual political experiment to find out: gathering a thousand teenage boys from Texas and asking them to build a government from the ground up. The Atlantic’s editor in chief Jeffrey Goldberg leads this conversation with Boys State co-directors Jesse Moss and Amanda McBaine about the collective take-aways from hundreds of interviews with young men.

1:15pm - 2:15pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
A conversation with Wilmer Valderrama

5:30pm - 7:30pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
A conversation and reception with Julia Louis-Dreyfus and NRDC’s Gina McCarthy
Actor, producer, activist and member of NRDC's Board of Trustees Julia Louis-Dreyfus and NRDC President and CEO Gina McCarthy sit down for a heartfelt conversation about activism, impactful storytelling, new projects and more. Moderated by EW’s Editor-In-Chief JD Heyman.

8:30pm - 10:30pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
TheFutureParty Presents: Beast Beast panel discussion and reception with Alec Baldwin
Featuring Director Danny Madden, Executive Producer Alec Baldwin and actors Shirley Chen and Will Madden. The panelists will discuss the film’s captivating look at what it means to come of age in an era marked by technology and social media. Reception will follow the panel.

Saturday, January 25

11am - 12pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
The Glorias discussion with Julie Taymor
Director Julie Taymor is widely recognized for her ability to explore the importance of forging one's own path and embrace the challenge of the unknown. In her hotly anticipated new film, Taymor brings her signature inventiveness and audacity to craft a complex tapestry of one of the most iconic and legendary figures of modern history, based on Gloria Steinem own memoir My Life on the Road.

1:00pm – 2:45pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents: Rebuilding Paradise panel discussion and reception
Featuring Director Ron Howard, President of National Geographic Global Television Networks Courteney Monroe, Paradise Unified School District Superintendent Michelle John and NRDC’s President and CEO Gina McCarthy, this in-depth discussion will focus on the film Rebuilding Paradise. With unfathomable, harrowing footage, Academy Award–winning filmmaker Ron Howard pulls the viewer into the driver’s seat to experience the terror and the helplessness of devastated refugees from a town with the ironic name of Paradise. Eighty-five lives are lost in what ultimately became the most destructive wildfire in California’s history. The conversation will also focus on climate storytelling in fiction and non-fiction film and television. Reception to follow panel discussion, featuring a gallery exhibit of National Geographic photographer Pete Muller’s photos from Paradise.

4:00pm - 5:00pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
Nine Days panel discussion with Winston Duke & Zazie Beetz
Nine Days is a metaphysical exploration of the deepest, most human emotions.

5:00pm - 7:00pm
YoHoZ Chillax
The Creative Coalition salute to Young Hollywood and Generation Z producers, writers, directors, talent, network, and development executives. The event is hosted in partnership with Entertainment Weekly and NRDC.

8:30pm - 10:30pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
Relic panel discussion and reception
Featuring Director Natalie Erika James and actresses Emily Mortimer, Robyn Nevin and Bella Heathcote. Relic is a multigenerational female-focused dramatic thriller that plays with the mind to show the haunting visualization of Alzheimer’s. Natalie Erika James depicts in this film the heartbreak and horrors of aged dementia, the importance of human connection and the shifting roles and dynamics within a family when the parent assumes the role of the child. Reception will follow the panel.

Sunday, January 26

11am - 12pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
A Conversation with Eva Longoria

2pm - 3pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
The Cost of Silence panel discussion
Featuring director, Mark Manning and marine toxicologist and activist, Riki Ott
As the federal government now plans the world’s most extensive offshore drilling expansion, with a blanket approval of a chemical dispersant clean-up plan, The Cost of Silence is an urgent exposé of the outsize power of Big Oil and the dangers of offshore drilling.

4:00pm - 6:00pm
Power Women’s Cocktail
The 4th annual Power Women’s Cocktail, hosted by Robin Thede, celebrates diverse female voices in independent film, championing the ability of stories to move the culture. From screenwriters and actors to directors and producers, the event serves as an opportunity for the community of women filmmakers to come together, network, and celebrate. The event is hosted by The Black List, the Sundance Institute, Entertainment Weekly and NRDC.

Monday, January 27

11am - 12pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
Spaceship Earth panel discussion
Featuring director Matt Wolf, producer Stacey Reiss and biospherian, Mark Nelson
In 1991, a group of unconventional visionaries built an enormous replica of earth’s ecosystem called Biosphere 2. When eight “biospherians” went to live sealed inside for two years, they faced ecological tribulations and media scrutiny. Nonetheless, they coalesced to manage their impact on this model world. Their epic adventure is a cautionary tale about the forces that threaten our planet, but it is also a testament to the power of small groups reimagining the world.

1:30pm - 2:30pm
EW x NRDC Sundance Film Festival Panel Series Presents:
Lost Girls panel discussion
Featuring Liz Garbus, Amy Ryan, Oona Laurence, Lola Kirke and Miriam Shor


The RSVP form is now closed. For any questions, kindly contact