Dolby Institute Fellowship Awards ‘Nine Days’ and ‘Wendy,’ Both to Premiere at 2020 Sundance Film Festival (MESA)

Dolby Laboratories’ Dolby Institute, along with the Ray and Dagmar Dolby Family Fund, announced that the Dolby Institute Fellowship winners for this year are Nine Days, written and directed by Edson Oda, and Wendy, directed by Behn Zeitlin and co-written by Behn and Eliza Zeitlin.

The fellowship supports both films finishing in Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos, and both films will premiere in Dolby Atmos at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. Wendy will premiere at the Eccles Theater on Sunday, January 26 at 3:30 PM MT. Nine Days will premiere at the Eccles Theater on Monday, January 27 at 6:30 PM MT.

Nine Days looks at the question, “What if being born is not the beginning but the goal?” In a house distant from the reality we know, a reclusive man interviews prospective candidates — personifications of human souls — for the privilege that he once had: to be born.

“Receiving the fellowship was an honor and a privilege. It was such an important and essential asset to the storytelling,” said Edson Oda. “With both Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos we were able to create more immersive scenes, which was key for this film, considering it is about discovering how it feels to be alive.”

In Wendy, the classic story of Peter Pan is wildly reimagined in a ragtag epic from Benh Zeitlin, director of Beasts of the Southern Wild. Lost on a mysterious island where aging and time have come unglued, Wendy must fight to save her family, her freedom, and the joyous spirit of youth from the deadly peril of growing up.

“The Dolby Institute Fellowship was an absolute miracle for me. They stepped in at a point where the film stuck on the edge of something beautiful. The pieces were all there but they weren’t singing together in the way I knew they could,” said Benh Zeitlin. “It was only through their generosity and incredible Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos technologies that we were able to spread our sound and color into another dimension and truly realize the potential of Wendy.”

On Friday, January 24 at 2:00 PM MT, Dolby Institute Director Glenn Kiser will lead a panel with Edson Oda and Behn Zeitlin at The Box at the Ray Theatre (1768 Park Ave. Park City, UT 84060). Scenes from each film will be presented, and the importance of sound design and high dynamic range will be discussed.

Launched at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, the Dolby Institute has been integral in the empowerment and enablement of emerging filmmakers in realizing their creative visions through education, inspiration, and direct artist support. The initiative brings together aspiring filmmakers and content creators with numerous award-winning industry professionals to provide creative counsel, advice, and tools for successful storytelling. Since its inception, the Dolby Institute has educated and inspired countless content creators through its “Conversations with Sound Artists” podcasts, live programs at film festivals and universities around the world, and content posted on Launched in 2014, the Dolby Institute Fellowships have supported 11 Festival feature films, including acclaimed films Blindspotting, Honey Boy, Mudbound, and Swiss Army Man.

“Dolby is passionate about empowering filmmakers to bring their creative dreams to life. The Dolby Institute Fellowship grants independent filmmakers access to tools and technologies that make these dreams come true,” said Glenn Kiser, director of the Dolby Institute. “This year, we are so proud to award the fellowships to Nine Days and Wendy, elevating these incredible films to push boundaries with their storytelling.” In addition to this year’s Dolby Institute Fellowship recipient films, several anticipated Sundance Film Festival titles will be presented in Dolby Atmos including Promising Young Woman, Sergio, and The Reason I Jump.