OGDEN -- Ogden gets a thin slice of the Sundance Film Festival pie, and it's consumed almost entirely by film-hungry locals.
That's a boon to indie-film-loving residents, who are usually able to get tickets to Ogden festival screenings of films that quickly sell out at Park City and Salt Lake City venues.
But having Weber County as the main audience at Ogden's Sundance venue is a disadvantage to downtown Ogden businesses, such as hotels and restaurants, that could make more Sundance money if they were catering to out of towners.
"It's a fair assessment," said Jan Elise Stambro, senior research economist at the Bureau of Economic and Business Research, an applied research center at the University of Utah's David Eccles School of Business. Sambro headed the economic impact study on Sundance 2012.
"The majority of people who attend the festival films in Ogden are local residents, and a large number of them are residents of Ogden."
And residents don't require temporary lodging, and they can make their meals at home, so don't have to eat every meal out.
According to surveys conducted for the study:
* The average Utah nonresident attending Sundance 2012 spent $149.85 per day on lodging, and the average Utah resident spent 53 cents.
* The average Utah nonresident attending Sundance spent $82.79 daily on meals, whereas the average Utah resident spent $33.52 daily.
* Of all Utah nonresidents attending the festival, only 3.7 percent planned to attend screenings in Ogden. Of Utah residents, 17.7 planned to attend in Ogden.
The results are based on the results of 410 surveys taken during last year's Sundance Film Festival. The BEBR surveys were distributed to venues in different cities based on the percentage of festival attendance in that city. So Park City got the most surveys, followed by Salt Lake City, then Ogden and then the Sundance Resort.
Alex Montanez, owner of Rovali's Ristorante, on Ogden's Historic 25th Street, said he does see a modest increase in business during the annual film festival.
"Last year we did pretty well, as far as business and new people coming in," Montanez said. "We were up maybe 10 to 15 percent during the festival. We saw more people from out of town, and more from Salt Lake on the FrontRunner, and more from hotels that are out of town."
Montanez is marketing chairman for the Historic 25th Street Association, and said most of the restaurants in the association reported about the same business increase during Sundance. Retailers in the association also reported modest boosts in business.
Montanez said he and the other business owners in the Historic 25th Street Association have big plans for the 2014 festival.
"We are working on a campaign called Celebrate Cinema," he said. "We want to invite other small, independent film festival organizations to come at the same time as Sundance, so we can have a more cinema-centered environment."
The plan would be to have other indie film groups screen their offerings in nearby venues, such as Ogden's Union Station, Montanez said.
"It would complement Sundance, not compete with it, and it would bring more people down here," he said.
Celebrate Cinema has a new logo, but Montanez and other organizers are still figuring out the best ways to contact filmmakers and indie festivals, he said.
"The invitations are going out this year for next year," he said. "We are putting things into motion and will start making more plans soon, but right now, we are all preparing for Sundance."