Malia Obama Makes Red Carpet Debut at Sundance Screening for Her Short Film

Malia Obama, eldest daughter of former President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, made her first red carpet appearance for her directorial debut short film, The Heart.

By Brahmjot Kaur Jan 19, 2024 2:50 PMTags
Watch: Malia Obama Hits the Sundance Red Carpet for Directorial Debut

From the White House to the red carpet. 

Malia Obama, the eldest daughter of former President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, made her first-ever red carpet appearance at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah Jan. 17. 

The 25-year-old—who wore a long grey coat paired with a blue-striped button-down and black leggings for the occasion—celebrated the premiere of her short film, The Heart. The project, which follows a grieving son whose mother left him with an unusual request in her will, is Malia's directorial debut.

"The film is about lost objects and lonely people and forgiveness and regret," she shared in a Jan. 17 YouTube video, "but I also think it works hard to uncover where tenderness and closeness can exist in these things." 

She added, "We hope you enjoy the film and it makes you feel a bit less lonely or at least reminds you not to forget about the people who are."

Malia Obama and Sasha Obama Over the Years

Ahead of The Heart's premiere, Donald Glover, whose company Gilga produced the film, sang Malia's praises.

"I feel like she's just somebody who's gonna have really good things coming soon," the Atlanta creator told Vanity Fair in March 2022. "Her writing style is great."

Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images

It might be Malia's first foray as a director, but the former First Daughter does have experience when it comes to writing. After all, she was a staff writer on Amazon Prime's Swarm.

"Some of her pitches were wild as hell, and they were just so good and so funny," co-creator Janine Nabers told Entertainment Tonight in March. "She's an incredible writer. She brought a lot to the table.

As she put it, "She's really, really dedicated to her craft."

But Malia isn't the only one that stepped out for the annual Sundance Film Festival. Keep reading to see all the stars that attended this year.

Aubrey Plaza, Kieran Culkin & Steven Yeun

Casamigos x TAO Park City party 

AnnaSophia Robb

Casamigos x TAO Park City

Sebastian Stan

A Different Man premiere

Dylan O'Brien

The Hollywood Reporter Studio sponsored by Heineken Silver

Camila Cabello

The Vulture Spot

Kerry Washington

IndieWire Sundance Studio presented by Dropbox 

Jesse Eisenberg

Cinema Cafe

Kristen Stewart

Love Lies Bleeding premiere

Andra Day

New York Magazine The Cut’s "How I Get It Done" event 

Chris Colfer

GLAAD x Meredith Marks Park City boutique event

Este Haim

Suncoast premiere

Lux Pascal

Project Blackbird's "Mental Health in Film" panel

Riley Keough

Gotham Sundance Dinner

Glen Powell

IMDb Portrait Studio at Acura House of Energy

Saoirse Ronan

The Outrun premiere

Julia Fox

Variety's Sundance Studio

Steven Yeun & Kristen Stewart

Love Me premiere

Riley Keough

Sasquatch Sunset premiere

Jason Schwartzman

Between the Temples premiere

Malia Obama

The Heart premiere at the Short Film Program

Robert Downey Jr. & Christopher Nolan

Opening Night Gala

Jay Ellis & Pedro Pascal

Freaky Tales world premiere

Kristen Stewart

Opening Night Gala


Freaky Tales world premiere

Jennifer Grey

Opening Night Gala

Dylan Mulvaney

ALOK premiere at the Short Film Program

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