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Having stepped down last month as Director of the Sundance Film Festival, John Cooper offers a unique perspective on an artistic movement that became an invaluable part of our cultural and social fabric—its renegade films and filmmakers, outrageous stories of grit and determination, late night deals, the serendipity of cult classics, and the making of its own mythology, including the culminating wisdom of Cooper’s “Ten Commandments” of Indie Film.

From the breakout artists to the most shocking moments, join us for The (Indie) World According to Cooper.

LFLA Members are invited to enjoy an exclusive reception following the program.

Lost & Found at the Movies is generously supported by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association

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John Cooper

John Cooper is the former Festival Director of the Sundance Film Festival, a role he held from April 2009 to February 2020. He has been a member of the Sundance programming staff since 1989. In the early years, Cooper created the Short Film Program at the festival and soon transitioned into programming documentaries and feature films. He steadily moved from Programmer to Senior Programmer and eventually Director of Programming. During his tenure, Cooper oversaw all public programming ventures, including Sundance London and Hong Kong. He also started the Ignite Program to serve film enthusiasts between the ages of 18-25. From 1995-1998 Cooper served as programming director of Outfest and served on the Outfest Board of Directors until 2002. In 2018 he was added to the Variety 500 of The Most Powerful People Working In The Global Media Business Today. Cooper currently assumes an emeritus role with Sundance Institute while enjoying his retirement in Northern California.


John Nein

John Nein is a Senior Programmer at the Sundance Film Festival and deals primarily with U.S. and international feature films. He also plans the festival’s panels and runs the Institute’s film preservation initiative. John grew up in Europe and the U.S., studied history at Carleton College, and earned his MFA from UCLA’s Film Directing program, where he made several award-winning shorts and lobbied tirelessly for better coffee in the vending machines.


Photo credit: 2020_Screening_Impetigore_JemalCountess_0255

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How much does Lost & Found at the Movies cost to attend?

    Lost & Found at the Movies is free to attend.

  • Can I attend if I’m not a Member?

    While priority notification is given to LFLA Members, non-Members are welcome to attend if space allows. However, the complimentary reception following the program is limited to Members.

  • Do I have to make a reservation?

    Reservations are recommended, as our programs often fill to capacity. Priority is given to reserved guests.

  • Can I attend even if I don’t have a reservation?

    Yes! We often have space available to accommodate walk-up guests without advanced reservations. Check our stand-by policy for more information.

  • Reservation Policy for Free Programs

    As Lost & Found at the Movies is free of charge, it is our policy to overbook. In the case of a FULL program your free reservation may not guarantee admission. We recommend arriving early. Unclaimed reservations will be released to standby patrons at the start of each program.

  • Standby Policy

    Standby numbers are distributed in person only one hour before the program, on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no advance wait list for full programs. Standby patrons will be admitted based on availability. Most programs will be available via podcast. Become a Member of the Library Foundation to receive priority notification of these programs.

  • Canceling a Reservation

    If you are unable to use your reservation, please email libbymccarthy@lfla.org.

  • Where does Lost & Found at the Movies take place?

    Unless otherwise noted, Lost & Found at the Movies is held at the downtown Central Library’s Mark Taper Auditorium.

  • Where should I park for Lost & Found at the Movies?

    We recommend taking public transportation. Parking for the Central Library is at the Westlawn Garage at 524 S. Flower Street. For more information, visit the Library’s website.

  • Where do I purchase the speaker’s book?

    Occasionally a guest on Lost & Found at the Movies is touring with a book. Books are made available for purchase at programs or can be purchased while making your online reservation. In order to participate in the book signing, you must purchase at least one book.


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