Kristen Stewart and Christopher Nolan assist in launching the Sundance Film Festival with “Freaky Tales”

For ten days of film viewing, thousands of moviegoers, Hollywood stars, business leaders, and filmmakers from around the globe have descended upon a heavily snow-covered Park City.

The world’s best independent film festival, Sundance Film Festival, is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. Among the many world premieres this year are a star-studded banquet that honors festival veterans like Christopher Nolan and Kristen Stewart.

On the first day, over seventeen films are showing. These include documentaries about Brian Eno, Lollapalooza, and Frida Kahlo; Yance Ford’s investigation into American policing, “Power,” and the fictitious state experiment, “Girls State.” In fiction premieres, a select group of ticket buyers will be among the first to view “Freaky Tales,” a story set in the 1980s and starring June Squibb as a Los Angeles grandmother who falls victim to fraud and sets out to retrieve her money with the late Richard Roundtree. The production is directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck.

Park City, where many of the Main Street stores and eateries have been converted into a cluster of branded lounges from different sponsors and media partners, is still the center of activity. Apart from the movie theaters showing nonstop, there are numerous discussions and panel discussions on topics ranging from the history of Sundance to producing your own feature film. In addition, there will be screenings in Salt Lake City and, starting on January 25, online screenings of a few selected films for holders of virtual festival passes.

a little bit outside of the city Some of the wealthiest attendees of the festival will assemble at the DeJoria Center in Kamas on Thursday for an opening night gala that will feature homage awards for Nolan, Stewart, “Past Lives” director Celine Song, and “The Eternal Memory” director Maite Alberdi.

“It was a turning point in my career to present ‘Memento’ at the Sundance Film Festival,” Nolan had previously stated. “This award is a full circle moment and testament to the extraordinary influence of independent filmmaking.”

Attendees at the dinner are likely to witness Robert Downey Jr. toasting his “Oppenheimer” director and Jesse Eisenberg presenting Stewart, his co-star and pal from “Adventureland,” with an award.