SXSW 2018 is just around the corner and over the last 2 weeks we have seen a flurry of film, event and speaker announcements. There will surely be a few more special events and surprise announce before the film festival kicks off March 9th in Austin, TX. Until then here are our top ten can’t miss events at SXSW film 2018.
20th CENTURY FOX PRESENTS ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL SXSW OPENING NIGHT PARTY
For the first time ever, 20th Century Fox welcomes SXSW Platinum and Film badge holders to Iron City, the movie set where Alita: Battle Angel was filmed.
SXSW Platinum and Film badge holders are invited to join the cast and filmmakers at Robert Rodriguez’s Troublemaker Studios for the 2018 SXSW Opening Night Party in celebration of the upcoming Alita: Battle Angel. Attendees will be picked up at the 5th Street side entrance of the Hilton Hotel in Downtown Austin byAlita: Battle Angelbranded shuttles and will be transported to the futuristic Iron City movie set. From 9:30 pm to 12:30 am on Friday March 9, guests will enjoy cocktails, bites from local food trucks and great music, all within an immersive film set, featuring props from the film.
I hope this is similar to the ‘Blade Runner 2049’ experience that took place at San Diego Comic Con last year. It was a stellar immersive experience to sucked you right into the film.
HBO Original Episodic Series Debut: ‘Barry’
HBO is set to premiere their new episodic dark comedy ‘Barry’ at SXSW. The series features Bill Hader as a low-rent hitman from the Midwest. Lonely and dissatisfied in his life he begrudgingly travels to Los Angeles to kill someone and ends up finding an accepting community in a group of eager hopefuls within the LA theater scene. From the clips and trailer we have seen the dark comedic performance from Bill Vader is something I would LOVE to see more of.
Henry Winkler, Stephen Root, Sarah Goldberg, Glenn Fleshler, and Anthony Carrigan round out the cast.
A24’s ‘Hereditary’ Hopes to Keep Festival Buzz Going
Pegged by some as ‘The Exorcist’ of our generation, ‘Hereditary’, is fresh off a buzz worthy screening at the Sundance Film Festival. Now it will be unleashed to the masses at SXSW.
A24 delivers another horror thriller film that set the genre community on fire.So what is all the fuss about over ‘Hereditary?’ If you watch the trailer you can see for yourself. This seems like the kind of film that you would want to go into pretty blind and come of the theater wanting more.
A24 has become a master of crafting a trailer that builds tension and brings you to the edge of your seat while teetering on madness and the unknown. Just enough intrigue to make you clamor to see the film but not quite enough to completely let you know what the hell is going on.
‘Hereditary’ is from filmmaker Ari Aster and the film stars Toni Collette in what looks to be a masterful performance of insanity. It also stars Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff, and Milly Shapiro.
IFC Midnight Presents – ‘Ghost Stories’
IFC Midnight brings their much anticipated genre anthology ‘Ghost Stories’ to SXSW for it’s North American Premiere. An arch skeptic debunker of the supernatural embarks upon a terror filled quest when he stumbles across a long lost file containing details of three cases of inexplicable ‘hauntings’. Adapted from the Olivier Award Winning hit stage play. The cast is led by Martin Freeman and also includes Alex Lawther, Jill Halfpenny, Andy Nyman, Paul Whitehouse.
Summer of ’03
On her deathbed, Jamie’s grandmother leaves her with two pieces of information: one involves a baptism, the other a blowjob. This sets Jamie and her family on an emotional roller coaster ride while she falls for the wrong guy at the wrong time.
Summer of ’03 will make it’s world premiere at SXSW and as of right now no trailer has been released. But with a cast that includes Andrea Savage (I’m Sorry) and Paul Scheer (How Did This Get Made) it will not disappoint.
The cast also includes; Joey King, Jack Kilmer, Erin Darke, Stephen Ruffin, Kelly Lamor Wilson, Logan Medina, June Squibb.
The appropriately named ‘Blockers’ (short for cock blockers) revolves around three parents who discover their daughters’ pact to lose their virginity at prom, they launch a covert one-night operation to stop the teens from sealing the deal. This one stars Leslie Mann, Ike Barinholtz and WWE megastar John Cena. Directed by one of our favorites, Kay Cannon.
This is another step in the post wrestling career of John Cena who is hoping to capitalize on life after wrestling much in the same way Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson has. He has all the potential to do so and I can’t wait to see him in more stuff.
‘Meow Wolf : Origin Story’ & VR Story Installation ‘The Atrium’
Meow Wolf, the Santa Fe art collective and creators of the award-winning House of Eternal Return exhibition, will premiere its first feature documentary and VR story installation at SXSW 2018.
Meow Wolf: Origin Story Feature Documentary – World Premiere
Meow Wolf: Origin Story follows a disenfranchised group of artists, punks, and weirdos who create a subversive DIY collective to disrupt the art establishment in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which in the face of internal turmoil evolves into a cultural phenomenon on the path to becoming a global creative empire. Directed by Morgan Capps and Jilann Spitzmiller, this fascinating and heartfelt feature-length documentary will have its world premiere at SXSW 2018.
“Meow Wolf: Origin Story is a unique, against-all-odds story with universal and timely threads. We’re so honored to premiere the documentary at SXSW and can’t wait to introduce audiences to the Meow Wolf collective,” said co-director Morgan Capps.
Meow Wolf: Origin Story chronicles the artists whose identities have been shaped within an unconventional group dynamic, blowing the lid off stewing conflict between diverse egos, artistic freedom vs organization, individual passion, and the good of the collective. They walk the fine line between chaos and order, inspiration and mental illness, and finally success and destruction, as they navigate their future together. Breaking from conventional documentary storytelling, the film’s psychedelic diversions and maximal aesthetic echo the story of Meow Wolf itself, where weird is good, and the unlikely, possible.
The Atrium VR Story Installation – SXSW Official Selection and World Premiere
Meow Wolf channels the creativity behind its acclaimed, large-scale exhibitions into a new form of shared interactive digital storytelling with THE ATRIUM. SXSW attendees willunravel the mystery of the portal-hopping Selig family from a new perspective, as a surveillance agent downloaded into the body of a cybernetic host. Adrift in the multiverse, they are tasked with investigating the abnormalities surrounding Morgan Selig.
Meow Wolf injects the virtual into physical reality through its custom haptic multi-player installation. The location-based platform is the first part of a cross-modal system aimed at providing a new set of tools to virtual creators.
“We’re moving away from thoughts and patterns that reinforce passive media trends. The tools are finally here to create worlds that know you’re there, and stories that can stare right back at us.” said director Brian Solomon.
Meow Wolf’s immersive digital team explores the edge where technology meets artistic storytelling. They use a combination of narrative techniques developed around real-time engines, mixed reality, interactive scenography, installation art, music, and performance. The Atrium is written and directed by Brian Solomon, and executive produced by Meow Wolf CEO, Vince Kadlubek and Nicolas Gonda, producer of The Tree of Life and Voyage of Time.
The North American premiere of Wes Anderson’s highly-anticipated Isle of Dogs will close the 2018 Festival along with an all-star red carpet event.
The film tells the story of Atari Kobayashi, 12-year-old ward to corrupt Mayor Kobayashi. When, by executive decree, all the canine pets of Megasaki City are exiled to a vast garbage dump, Atari sets off alone in a miniature Junior-Turbo Prop and flies to Trash Island in search of his bodyguard-dog, Spots. There, with the assistance of a pack of newly-found mongrel friends, he begins an epic journey that will decide the fate and future of the entire Prefecture. The film features an all star cast including Bryan Cranston, Koyu Rankin, Edward Norton, Bob Balaban, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, Kunichi Nomura, Akira Takayama, Greta Gerwig, Frances McDormand, Akira Ito, Scarlett Johansson, Harvey Keitel, F. Murray Abraham, Yoko Ono, Tilda Swinton, Ken Watanabe, Mari Natsuki, Fisher Stevens, Nijiro Murakami, Liev Schreiber, and Courtney B. Vance.
John Kransinski and Emily Blunt Star in thriller ‘A Quiet Place’
This marks the first time that John Kransinski and his wife, Emily Blunt, have appear on screen together as leads in a feature film. ‘A Quiet Place’ will make it’s world premiere at SXSW. The debut trailer was almost completely silent which makes sense if you consider the brief premise that was release; If they can’t hear you, they can’t hunt you.
Won’t You Be My Neighbor?
‘Won’t You Be My Neighbor?’ looks at children’s television host Mr. Rogers’ hard-fought campaign to influence generations of kids and adults in the ways of kindness. We could all use a little more Mr. Rogers in our lives. Bringing this documentary to SXSW is a way to introduce him to a whole new generation of kids and fans.
In a little over a month the Boom Howdy team will ascend on Austin, TX for a week of films and no sleep! Hope to see you there!