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Sun Valley Film Festival Offers ‘Free Solo,’ Festival Passes
Alex “No Big Deal” Honnold is a professional dirtbag climber who lives out of his van and is known for his humble self-effacing attitude. PHOTO: Jimmy Chin
Saturday, December 29, 2018


Sun Valley Film Festival patrons—those who contribute at least $1,500 to the festival—will get a running start on film watching.

They will be feted to a reception and special awards season screening of National Geographic’s highly acclaimed film “Free Solo” at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 30, at the Sun Valley Opera House.

A question-and-answer with filmmakers E. Chai Versarhelyi and world-renowned photographer and mountaineer Jimmy Chin will follow the screening.

“Free Solo,” filmed by award-winning documentary filmmaker Varsarhelyi and Chin, features a stunning and intimate portrait of free soloist climber Alex Honnold as he prepares to achieve his lifelong dream of climbing the vertical face of the world’s most famous rock—3,000-foot El Capitan in Yosemite National Park.

In Honnold style, he wants to do it without a rope. The climb is considered one of the greatest athletic feats of any kind since it means either perfection or death.

And the film itself is an edge-of-your seat thriller and a triumph of the human spirit.

The eighth annual Sun Valley Film Festival (SVFF) will take place March 13-17 in Sun Valley. A variety of passes allow unique perks.

The Insider Pass is the festival’s top “all access” pass. It includes the new Insider’s First Look Reception, Festival Opening Celebration, VIP Gift Bag, priority access to all SVFF events, Festival Headquarters access with its HQ Bloody Mary Bar, Salon lunch talks, après ski treats and libations, unlimited film access, panels and labs and all the SVFF evening parties, including the SVFFF Awards Bash. The pass costs $1,000—a limited number will be sold.

Other 2019 SVFF passes include the Festival Pass, which costs $500; the Film Pass, which costs $200, and the Party Pass, which costs $200. For more information and to purchase online visit

In addition the SVFF offers a Patrons Program for those wishing to support the festival at a higher level with a tax-deductible contribution. Special benefits include front-of-the line access and invitations to private events. Details are available at Corporate sponsorships are also available.

The Sun Valley Film Festival is known for its high-profile guests, who have included Clint Eastwood and Geena Davis. It’s also known for its low-key insider access—free Coffee Talks have given hundreds the opportunity to hear from people like Jody Foster and Drew Barrymore.

Its mission is to empower independent filmmakers to share stories that inspire change. The 2019 festival will feature a curated slate of more than 60 cutting-edge films and TV premieres, Coffee Talks, a Screenwriters Lab led by award-winning writers and more.

For more information, visit


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