photos: @codamovie on Instagram

CODA is at Sundance for just two showings – both have sold out. Bidding has begun, and distribution of the film in theatres or online is a bit down the road. More above, in ASL.

CODA stars Marlee Matlin, Troy Kusters, and TerpTheatre alumnus Daniel Durant (Police Deaf Near Far), along with Emilia Jones as Ruby in the title CODA role.

Filmed before the COVID pandemic, CODA* tells the story of a Deaf family with one hearing Coda member. The film features a stellar Deaf cast, while also highlighting the Coda experience … something that is entirely new to many hearing people. The film was scheduled to be at Sundance this year, which has been re-imagined as an online event. Tickets to the January 28th premier online sold out quickly — as did a second showing that was added to accomodate the increasing demand to see the film.

After an intense bidding war, Apple paid $25 million for the worldwide distributing rights to CODA. The cast and director of the film discussed the avalanche of praise for their work with The Wrap:

The Sundance Festival closed with an awards ceremony, where CODA won four of the six available honors in the US Dramatic competition:

Grand Jury Prize: CODA

Audience Award: CODA

Directing: Siân Heder for CODA

Special Jury Award for Best Ensemble: The cast of “CODA”
(Emilia Jones, Eugenio Derbez, Troy Kotsur, Ferdia Walsh-Peelo, Daniel Durant, and Marlee Matlin)

Cast members and director Siân Heder celebrated on social media as they watched the awards ceremony, which was held online (as was the entire Sundance festival).

*When in all caps, CODA typically refers to an organization called ‘Children Of Deaf Adults‘. When referring to an individual, the term is written as ‘Coda’. For some, the film’s use of CODA for the title may seem inconsistent with this distinction.

Enjoy some of the early reviews of CODA below, and the Twitter feed from the film’s director.

Sundance 2021 Winners: ‘CODA’ Sweeps With Four Prizes, Questlove’s Documentary ‘Summer Of Soul’ Earns Two

“I hope that this means that more stories that center deaf characters”

Siân Heder
Director, CODA
The movie has been praised for featuring deaf performers in key roles, and saw emotionally-charged social media reactions. That will likely mean that the film will snag an eye-popping number when a deal is finally signed, although negotiations are ongoing with multiple parties expressing interest.

“Rapturous Premiere”


“A radiant

The Hollywood Reporter
There are films that upend conventions and subvert expectations. And there are those that lean into them — hard. CODA … is of the latter ilk.
 When we first see Ruby Rossi (Emilia Jones), she’s on a fishing schooner with her father, the tall, grizzled Frank (Troy Kotsur), and her brother, the squinty and strapping Leo (Daniel Durant), hauling a giant net of fish in from the sea. They’re a family of fishermen, and as they stand in the glinting sun in their orange plastic suits (with rock ‘n’ roll blasting on the radio that only Ruby can hear), tossing the flounder, lobsters, and crab into different buckets, you see just how well they mesh as a unit.

“I had the most out-of-body movie-viewing experience I’ve had in the year since movie theaters closed down.”


“It helps to have such an appealing cast…”

If the coronavirus pandemic has forced the Sundance Film Festival to reinvent itself virtually this year, it could not have gotten off to a more satisfying start than with CODA.

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