Sundance is getting a makeover in time for the premiere of its new crime drama The Red Road. The network will have a new logo as of Feb. 3 and will change its name from Sundance Channel to SundanceTV (yes, they own the Sundance.TV URL, too).
Network president Sarah Barnett told Adweek that there was no time like the present—the new look, she said, better comports with the kind of programming Sundance has done in the recent past. "Rather than use a rebrand to talk about what's to come, we wanted to talk about where we are," she said.
Part of the thinking behind the name change is simply practical, Barnett explained. "The challenge with the old logo was that it was a bunch of letters and it was in a box," said Barnett. The new logo, Barnett added, will be easier to read on smaller screens, where more and more viewing takes place. "And channel, I think, is a little bit more of a generic term these days."
Sundance's first wholly owned scripted series—Rectify—premiered in 2013; the series received positive critical attention, as did its co-production with the BBC, Top of the Lake. A few months later, in September, the network shifted formats to full ad support. Now, Barnett has slate of originals including The Red Road, starring Jason Momoa, on Feb. 27; second seasons of Rectify and supernatural drama The Returned; and the upcoming The Honorable Woman (again with the BBC), starring Maggie Gyllenhaal.
The new logo "has to work in a way that doesn't compete or try to be the hero alongside our work," said svp of marketing Monica Bloom. The network consulted with firms Base Design and Johnson + Wolverton to come up with the new look. "I think we were very impressed with Base Design's previous work they'd done internationally; they have such a modern aesthetic," Bloom said. "They know how to create streamlined, elegant pieces. Johnson + Wolverton we've worked with for quite some time to craft the language around our brand."