What happens when a few hundred thousand people get together (virtually, of course) to make a movie? With Kevin Macdonald’s Life in a Day 2020 venture, we’ll soon find out...

Kevin Macdonald invited the whole world to make a movie with him last summer, and more than a few people answered the call.

Some 324,000 individuals took part in Macdonald's Life in a Day project, documenting life on Earth on July 25, 2020. Video submissions poured in from 192 countries and in 65 languages, and it was then up to Kevin and his courageous editorial team to sort through all that footage. 

Thankfully, this isn’t Macdonald's first time leading such a daunting venture. Exactly ten years ago, the Oscar-winning director conducted the same experiment in crowdsourced filmmaking: his inaugural Life in a Day project was a snapshot of life on July 24, 2010. That original call for entries yielded 80,000 submissions and 4,500 hours of footage—no small editorial task (that’s 187+ days)—but nothing compared to what this year’s massive 324,000 submissions must amount to.

By some miracle (and amidst post-production for Macdonald's other upcoming film, The Mauritanian), the project did take shape. Whittled down to only 87 minutes, the final cut follows various lives from sunrise to sunset across the globe, and checks the pulse of humanity during an unfathomably tense year.

Life in a Day 2020 debuted just this week at the Sundance Film Festival, and it will drop (for free) on YouTube this Saturday, February 6. If you’re up for a double feature, the 2010 edition of Life in a Day is still available here.