The Sundance Institute has chosen a film by University of Arizona faculty member Lisanne Skyler for its inaugural digital commercial release.
The 56-minute documentary, No Loans Today, focuses on the days after a jury acquitted Los Angeles police officers charged in the Rodney King beating.
"We just had the 20th anniversary of the riots, and it was right after the Trayvon Martin tragedy in Florida, and we are still thinking about these issues, stereotypes," said Skyler, who teaches in the UA School of Theatre, Film & Television. "There is a dialogue that is still happening, and this film can be a part of that."
Skyler's documentary is one of 15 independent films the Sundance Institute is releasing in digital format through its Artist Services program. She said the new platform represents a big shift for filmmakers and audiences interested in films with diverse perspectives.
"You know, for independent films, this emphasis for digital and on-demand platforms is really changing," she said. "What constitutes success for an independent filmmaker is really changing."
Skyler said she will use her experiences with new distribution methods to help her students understand the evolving film market.