How important is the Sundance Film Festival's NEXT program? The yearly slate of edgier fare has led to critically acclaimed art house hits such as "Obvious Child," "Listen Up Phillip" and "Sound of My Voice." It also has inspired the Los Angeles-based Sundance Next Festival, which just wrapped up its second edition this past August. So while it may not have the prestige of the U.S. dramatic competition, NEXT films are something any movie lover should pay attention to.

Along with the top competition categories, the Sundance Institute announced the NEXT slate for the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and it features some indie star power. Kristen Wiig stars in Sundance alum Sebastian Silva's "Nasty Baby" (which makes it back-to-back festivals for the "Skeleton Twins" star), John C. Reilly and Michael Cera appear in the comedy "Entertainment" and former "Girls" star Chris Abbott and Cynthia Nixon star in Josh Mond's "James White." Perhaps most notably, Troy, N.Y. gets its moment in the spotlight in "H." which, according to the festival's description, centers on "two women, each named Helen, [who] find their lives spinning out of control after a meteor allegedly explodes over" the city.

The complete NEXT slate for Sundance 2015 on the next page.

With over a decade of experience in the movie industry, Ellwood survived working for two major studios and has written for Variety, MSN and the LA Times. A co-founder of HitFix, Ellwood spends his time relaxing hitting 3’s on the basketball court and following his beloved Clippers.