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Dolby Atmos Elevates the 2018 Sundance Film Festival at The Ray, New 500-Seat Theatre

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 17, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Sundance Institute and the Dolby Institute, along with the Ray and Dagmar Dolby Family Fund, announced that Blindspotting, directed by Carlos López Estrada and co-written by and starring Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs, and I Think We're Alone Now, directed by Reed Morano and starring Peter Dinklage and Elle Fanning, have both received a Dolby Family Sound Fellowship. This fellowship provides a range of post-production resources to enable the recipients to fulfill the creative potential of their films' soundtracks. Blindspotting will open the 2018 Sundance Film Festival in Dolby Atmos on January 18, 2018 at 5:30 p.m. MT, and I Think We're Alone Now will make its world premiere in Dolby Atmos at the Eccles Theatreon January 21, 2018 at 12:00 p.m. MT.

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Blindspotting is a love letter to the city of Oakland and also an intimate tale about two best friends. The film uses both main characters to present contrasting points of view, and the filmmaking team used sound and music to guide the viewer through their divergent experiences. As the story progresses, the rumble of a freight train rumbles into the the bass line of the film's score, and the warning beep of a house alarm morphs into a bittersweet piano solo.

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In I Think We're Alone Now, Del (Peter Dinklage) is alone in the world. Literally. After the human race is wiped out, he lives in a small, empty town, methodically going from house to house, collecting batteries and other useful items, and burying the dead. He dines alone, reads, watches movies, and shelves books in the local library he's made his home. He's content in his solitude - until he discovers Grace (Elle Fanning), an interloper on his quiet earth. Her history and motives are obscure, and worse yet, she wants to stay. A world without voices, electrical grids, airplanes hundreds of miles off, lawn mowers, the accumulation of human activities carried from thousands of miles away: the film creates a tense, visceral journey for the viewer as even the absence of human life has a sound of its own.

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I Think We're Alone Now - Behind the Scenes

Dolby is also welcoming a new, permanent 500 seat-theater to Sundance which will include a Dolby Atmos sound system donated by Dolby. The Ray Theatre joins the existing Eccles Theatre in bringing completely immersive, moving audio to film lovers in Park City. Ahead of each screening on opening weekend, The Ray Theatre will play tracks from Major Lazer, Trifonic, Metrik, and London Elektricity remixed in Dolby Atmos, a state-of-the-art sound technology that places and moves sound all around the audience, including overhead, to truly immerse listeners in the music.

Blindspotting is a love letter to the city of Oakland and also an intimate tale about two best friends. The film uses both main characters to present contrasting points of view, and the filmmaking team used sound and music to guide the viewer through their divergent experiences. As the story progresses, the rumble of a freight train rumbles into the the bass line of the film's score, and the warning beep of a house alarm morphs into a bittersweet piano solo.

"The Dolby Atmos treatment truly allowed us to explore point-of-views in a way that conventional sound simply would not have allowed," said director Carlos López Estrada. "It was important to have the audience learn about the city of Oakland by introducing its unique soundscape. We manipulated these sounds to create effects that feel naturalistic and raw, grounding the characters in the world they inhabit. It has been a real treat to dive even deeper into these stories with sound, and we are very thankful to Dolby for offering their support through this generous grant."

In I Think We're Alone Now, Del (Peter Dinklage) is alone in the world. Literally. After the human race is wiped out, he lives in a small, empty town, methodically going from house to house, collecting batteries and other useful items, and burying the dead. He dines alone, reads, watches movies, and shelves books in the local library he's made his home. He's content in his solitude - until he discovers Grace (Elle Fanning), an interloper on his quiet earth. Her history and motives are obscure, and worse yet, she wants to stay. A world without voices, electrical grids, airplanes hundreds of miles off, lawn mowers, the accumulation of human activities carried from thousands of miles away: the film creates a tense, visceral journey for the viewer as even the absence of human life has a sound of its own.

"Mixing our film in Dolby Atmos gave us enormous opportunities to surround the audience in an atmospheric world where they can feel what is no longer there. It also helped us to send subliminal emotional cues throughout the film," said director Reed Morano of I Think We're Alone Now. "We needed the most powerful, impressionistic sound in order to take people on this psychological journey and Dolby made it possible for us to create what I was hearing in my head."

"The Dolby Institute and Dolby family work to enable independent filmmakers to have access to premium audio technology, and Dolby Atmos helps them best present their stories," said Glenn Kiser, Director of Dolby Institute. "It's an honor to present two Dolbyfellowships at this year's Sundance Film Festival, and we can't think of a more fitting way to introduce The Ray Theatre than to present screenings of both of these amazing films in Dolby Atmos."

Dolby Institute will host a sound panel at the Claimjumper in downtown Park City, discussing sound design and mixing of the Dolby Sound Fellowship winners, on January 21, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. MT. Daveed Diggs, cowriter and star of Blindspotting, and Tony award-winner for his performance as Thomas Jefferson in Hamilton, will be among the star-studded panel group. Diggs will be joined by Blindspotting director Carlos López Estrada and cowriter Rafael Casal, as well as members of the creative team behind I Think We're Alone Now.