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SXSW Announces 2019 Film Lineup

Jordan Peele's Us, Game of Thrones' final season, and the premiere of Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement's What We Do in the Shadows TV series headline an eclectic list of premieres.

by | January 16, 2019 | Comments

Claudette Barius/Universal Pictures
(Photo by Claudette Barius/Universal Pictures)

The SXSW Conference has announced its features lineup, adding to the previously announced opening night film US, Jordan Peele’s follow up to his winning mega-hit Get Out. Film, interactive, episodic, and immersive media all converge during the 10-day film conference, known for Texas-sized crowds and raucous reactions, in March. Last year’s opener, A Quiet Place, parlayed a glowing SXSW reaction into a $340 million juggernaut, and Us, we would assume, hopes for the same. This initial release of films is already stacked with a number of festival favorites like Seth Rogan and Matthew McConaughey and new offerings from first-time filmmakers Olivia Wilde and Logan-Marshall Green.

In the documentary section, lookout for Stuffed, which chronicles the surprising world of taxidermy, and Running with Beto, a behind-the-scenes look at Beto O’Rourke’s 2018 breakaway campaign to unseat Ted Cruz in the US Senate. Not to be overlooked is the impressive Episodic slate, which has become a premier stop for new and continuing series. A highlight this year is Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement’s hotly anticipated What We Do in the Shadows series, an episodic continuation of their cult feature of the same name. Last year, HBO built an entire town to recreate Westworld in the Lone Star State, and with the final season of Game of Thrones premiering in April, don’t be surprised if a larger-than-life installation pops up in the streets of Austin. The Headliners section and the Narrative Spotlight section include new films featuring Seth Rogen, Charlize Theron, Lupita Nyong’o, and Winston Duke, and those titles are joined by SXSW regulars Jay Duplass, Ethan Hawke, and Robert Rodriguez.

Films screening in Festival Favorites, Midnighters, Shorts, Virtual Cinema, Episodic Pilot Competition, Title Design Competition, Music Videos, and late-breaking Features will be announced on February 6. Read up on the full of SXSW Film Slate below:


NARRATIVE FEATURE COMPETITION

Alice
Director/Screenwriter: Josephine Mackerras
Cast: Emilie Piponnier, Martin Swabey, Chloe Boreham
She did everything right until it all went wrong. (World Premiere)

Extra Ordinary
Directors/Screenwriters: Mike Ahern, Enda Loughman
Cast: Maeve Higgins, Barry Ward, Will Forte, Claudia Doherty
Rose, a mostly sweet and mostly lonely small-town driving instructor, must use her supernatural talent to save the daughter of Martin (also mostly sweet and lonely), from a washed-up rockstar who is using her in a satanic pact that will reignite his fame. (World Premiere)

Go Back to China
Director/Screenwriter: Emily Ting
Cast: Anna Akana, Richard Ng, Lynn Chen, Kelly Hu, Kendy Cheung, Aviva Wang
After spoiled rich girl Sasha Li (Anna Akana) blows through half of her trust fund, she is cut off by her father (Richard Ng) and forced to go back to China and work for the family toy business. (World Premiere)

Mickey and the Bear
Director/Screenwriter: Annabelle Attanasio
Cast: Camila Morrone, James Badge Dale, Calvin Demba, Ben Rosenfield, Rebecca Henderson
Faced with the responsibility to take care of her addict, veteran father, headstrong teen Mickey Peck keeps her household afloat. When she has the opportunity to leave for good, she must choose between familial obligation and personal fulfillment. (World Premiere)

Ms. White Light
Director/Screenwriter: Paul Shoulberg
Cast: Roberta Colindrez, John Ortiz, Judith Light, Carson Meyer, Zachary Spicer
Lex Cordova’s business is dying. She has a unique ability to connect with her clients that are terminally ill. It’s just everyone else that she has a problem with. Valerie is a no bullshit woman who loves living her life. Her only way out is thru Lex. (World Premiere)

Sam Probst
(Photo by Sam Probst)

Pig Hag
Directors: Sam Probst, Colby Holt
Screenwriter: Colby Holt
Cast: Anna T Schlegel, Tony Jaksha, Pete Zias, Michael Henry, Nate Stoner, Maxwell Esposito, Amanda DeSimone, Alex Myerchin, Andrew Kudla
Jodie, a woman in her mid-thirties, struggles with the pressure to find a partner and have children. When she attends a Guns N’ Roses concert, she thinks she may have met a potential match — until he immediately ghosts on her. (World Premiere)

Porno
Director: Keola Racela
Screenwriters: Matt Black, Laurence Vannicelli
Cast: Evan Daves, Larry Saperstein, Jillian Mueller, Glenn Stott, Robert Tann, Bill Phillips, Katelyn Pearce, Peter Reznikoff
When a group of naive teens working at a movie theater in a small Christian town discover a mysterious film hidden in its basement, they unleash an alluring succubus who gives them a sex education… written in blood. (World Premiere)

Saint Frances
Director: Alex Thompson
Screenwriter: Kelly O’Sullivan
Cast: Ramona Edith-Williams, Kelly O’Sullivan, Lily Mojekwu, Charin Alvarez, Jim True-Frost, Max Lipchitz, Mary Beth Fisher, Francis Guinan, Bradley Grant Smith
At the start of the summer, Bridget has an abortion just as she lands a much-needed job in affluent Evanston, Illinois — nannying a six-year old. (World Premiere)

South Mountain
Director/Screenwriter: Hilary Brougher
Cast: Talia Balsam, Scott Cohen, Andrus Nichols, Michael Oberholtzer, Naian Gonzalez, Midori Francis, Macaulee Rusnak Cassaday, Isis Masoud, Violet Rea,Guthrie Mass
When her teenagers head off to camp and her husband abruptly leaves her to begin a new family, Lila is left to her own curious and chaotic devices for a summer in her rural home in the Catskill mountains. (World Premiere)

Yes, God, Yes
Director/Screenwriter: Karen Maine
Cast: Natalia Dyer, Timothy Simons, Wolfgang Novogratz, Francesca Reale, Susan Blackwell, Parker Wierling, Alisha Boe, Donna Lynne Champlin
After an innocent AOL chat turns racy, a Catholic teenager in the early 2000s discovers masturbating and struggles to suppress her urges in the face of eternal damnation. (World Premiere)


DOCUMENTARY FEATURE COMPETITION

Waad al-Kateab
(Photo by Waad al-Kateab)

Ernie & Joe
Director: Jenifer McShane
Ernie & Joe follows two officers with the San Antonio Police Department mental health unit who are diverting people away from jail and into mental health treatment — one 911 call at a time. (World Premiere)

For Sama
Directors: Waad al-Khateab, Edward Watts
For Sama tells the epic story of a young woman’s journey through love, war and motherhood across five years of the uprising in Aleppo, Syria. (World Premiere)

Museum Town
Director: Jennifer Trainer, Screenwriters: Noah Bashevkin, Pola Rapaport, Jennifer Trainer
From the ashes of a deserted factory, an ambitious center for contemporary art has emerged. With MASS MoCA, a familiar story of deindustrialization in a rural American town finds an unconventional route to recovery. (World Premiere)

Nothing Fancy: Diana Kennedy (United Kingdom, U.S.)
Director: Elizabeth Carroll
Award-winning cookbook author, diehard environmentalist and feisty British nonagenarian Diana Kennedy reflects on an unconventional life spent mastering the cuisines of Mexico. (World Premiere)

Stuffed
Director: Erin Derham
Stuffed is a documentary feature film about the surprising world of taxidermy and the passionate artists across the world who see life where others only see death. (World Premiere)

Jan Balster
(Photo by Jan Balster)

Tread
Director: Paul Solet
Pushed to his breaking point, a master welder in a small town at the foot of the Rocky Mountains quietly fortifies a bulldozer with 30 tons of concrete and steel and seeks to destroy those he believes have wronged him. (World Premiere)

Vision Portraits
Director/Screenwriter: Rodney Evans
A feature-length documentary that chronicles the creative paths of blind and visually impaired artists including a photographer (John Dugdale), dancer (Kayla Hamilton), writer (Ryan Knighton) and the film’s director, Rodney Evans. (World Premiere)

We Are The Radical Monarchs
Director: Linda Goldstein Knowlton
Meet the Radical Monarchs, a group of young girls of color at the front lines of social justice. Set in Oakland, the film documents the journey of the group as they form, grow, and earn badges for units like “Black Lives Matter” and “Radical Beauty” (World Premiere)

Well Groomed
Director/Screenwriter: Rebecca Stern
Well Groomed travels the humorous, visually stunning world of Competitive Creative Dog Grooming alongside the colorful women transforming their beloved poodles into living sculptures. (World Premiere)

Why Can’t I Be Me? Around You
Directors/Screenwriters: Harrod Blank, Sjoerd Dijk
Rusty, a male race enthusiast, decides at 53 to get breasts. His father cuts his pay, his motorcycle friends abandon him and the women he dates all reject him. Rusty pursues her new identity and only hopes to gain acceptance from others. (World Premiere)


HEADLINERS

NEON / VICE
(Photo by NEON / VICE)

The Beach Bum
Director/Screenwriter: Harmony Korine
Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Snoop Dogg, Isla Fisher, Stefania Lavie Owen, Jimmy Buffett, Zac Efron, Martin Lawrence
The Beach Bum follows the hilarious misadventures of Moondog (Matthew McConaughey), a rebellious rogue who always lives life by his own rules. Co-starring Snoop Dogg, Zac Efron, and Isla Fisher, The Beach Bum is a refreshingly original and subversive. (World Premiere)

Booksmart
Director: Olivia Wilde
Screenwriters: Emily Halpern, Sarah Haskins, Susanna Fogel, Katie Silberman
Cast: Kaitlyn Dever, Beanie Feldstein, Jessica Williams, Will Forte, Lisa Kudrow, Jason Sudeikis
On the eve of graduating high school, two academic superstars and best friends realize they should have worked less and played more. Determined to not fall short of their peers, the girls set out on a mission to cram four years of fun into one night. (World Premiere)

Good Boys
Director: Gene Stupnitsky
Screenwriters: Lee Eisenberg, Gene Stupnitsky, Beth Stelling, John Phillips
Cast: Jacob Tremblay, Keith L. Williams, Brady Noon, Molly Gordon, Midori Francis, Josh Caras
The writers of Superbad and the producers of Sausage Party take on sixth grade in Universal Pictures’ Good Boys, an R-rated comedy about three friends on an epic one-day odyssey of bad decisions. (World Premiere)

The Highwaymen
Director: John Lee Hancock
Screenwriter: John Fusco
Cast: Kevin Costner, Woody Harrelson, Kathy Bates, Kim Dickinson
Texas Ranger Frank Hamer reflects on what made him a great lawman as he comes out of retirement to hunt down Bonnie and Clyde. (World Premiere)

Untitled Seth Rogen/ Charlize Theron Comedy
Director: Jonathan Levine
Screenwriter: Dan Sterling
Cast: Seth Rogen, Charlize Theron, O’Shea Jackson Jr., Andy Serkis, June Diane Raphael, Ravi Patel and Alexander Skarsgård
An ambitious diplomat with a spotless reputation and a hard-partying journalist hilariously redefine “international relations” as they try to keep their red-hot romance under wraps. (World Premiere)

Us
Director/Screenwriter: Jordan Peele
Cast: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss, Tim Heidecker, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Anna Diop, Evan Alex, Shahadi Wright-Joseph, Madison Curry, Cali Sheldon
An original nightmare from Oscar-winner Jordan Peele (Get Out), starring Lupita Nyong’o and Winston Duke, Us pits an average American family against a terrifying opponent: doppelgängers of themselves. (World Premiere)


NARRATIVE SPOTLIGHT

Nolwen Cifuentes
(Photo by Nolwen Cifuentes)

Adopt a Highway
Director/Screenwriter: Logan Marshall-Green
Cast: Ethan Hawke, Elaine Hendrix, Diana Gaeta Marshall-Green, Betty Gabriel, Mo McRae, Chris Sullivan, Nate Mooney, Christopher Heyerdahl, Anne Marie Johnson
After being released from prison following a twenty year sentence for a minor offense, an ex-con must learn to navigate the world while coming to terms with his own life which has moved on — all while caring for an abandoned baby he finds in a dumpster. (World Premiere)

The Art of Self-Defense
Director/Screenwriter: Riley Stearns
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Alessandro Nivola, Imogen Poots
The Art of Self-Defense stars Jesse Eisenberg and is set in the world of karate. Eisenberg plays a man who is attacked on the street and enlists in a local dojo, led by a charismatic Sensei (Nivola), in an effort to learn how to defend himself. (World Premiere)

Come As You Are
Director: Richard Wong
Screenwriter: Erik Linthorst
Cast: Grant Rosenmeyer, Hayden Szeto, Ravi Patel, Gabourey Sidibe, Janeane Garofalo, C.S. Lee, Jennifer Jelsema, Martha Kuwahara, Delaney Feener, Asta Philpot
Three young men with disabilities embark on a road trip to a brothel in Montreal catering to people with special needs to lose their virginity and embrace their independence. Inspired by a true story and remake of the Belgian film Hasta La Vista. (World Premiere)

The Day Shall Come (United Kingdom, U. S.)
Director: Chris Morris
Screenwriters: Chris Morris, Jesse Armstrong
Cast: Marchánt Davis, Anna Kendrick, Danielle Brooks, Denis O’Hare
An impoverished preacher who brings hope to the Miami projects is offered cash to save his family from eviction. He has no idea his sponsor works for the FBI who plan to turn him into a criminal by fueling his madcap revolutionary dreams. (World Premiere)

Carmen Hilbert
(Photo by Carmen Hilbert)

Frances Ferguson
Director: Bob Byington
Screenwriter: Scott King
Cast: Kaley Wheless, Nick Offerman, Keith Poulson, David Krumholtz
A small town’s reaction to scandal. (World Premiere)

I’m Just F*cking With You
Director: Adam Mason
Screenwriters: Gregg Zehenter, Scott Barkan
Cast: Keir O’Donnell, Hayes MacArthur, Jessica McNamee
A young man and his sister endure a night of increasingly frightening practical jokes while spending the night at a secluded motel. (World Premiere)

Mother’s Little Helpers
Director/Screenwriter: Kestrin Pantera
Cast: Breeda Wool, Melanie Hutsell, David Giuntoli, Sam Littlefield, Kestrin Pantera
When Joy Pride, a groovy 70’s burn-out on the caboose of the flower power movement learns she has weeks to live, her estranged children come together to do right by a mother who always did them wrong. (World Premiere)

Olympic Dreams
Director: Jeremy Teicher, Screenwriters: Alexi Pappas, Jeremy Teicher, Nick Kroll
Cast: Nick Kroll, Alexi Pappas, Gus Kenworthy, Morgan Schild, Jamie Anderson
In the Athlete Village at the Olympic Winter Games, Penelope (Alexi Pappas), a cross-country skier, befriends Ezra (Nick Kroll), a volunteer dentist, after a disappointing finish in her race. Penelope and Ezra share a special but limited time together. (World Premiere)

The Peanut Butter Falcon
Directors/Screenwriters: Tyler Nilson, Michael Schwartz
Cast: Shia LaBeouf, Dakota Johnson, Zack Gottsagen, John Hawkes, Bruce Dern, Thomas Haden Church, Jon Bernthal, Jake “The Snake” Roberts, Mick Foley
A young man with Down syndrome runs away from the retirement home where he lives to chase his dream of becoming a professional wrestler. (World Premiere)

Nigel Bluck
(Photo by Nigel Bluck)

Pink Wall
Director/Screenwriter: Tom Cullen
Cast: Tatiana Maslany, Jay Duplass
Six scenes. Six years. Six moments that shaped the relationship of Jenna and Leon. Pink Wall examines what defines us, the pressures of gender expectations, and our perpetual struggle between life and ambition. (World Premiere)

Run This Town
Director/Screenwriter: Ricky Tollman
Cast: Ben Platt, Nina Dobrev, Mena Massoud, Damian Lewis, Jennifer Ehle, Scott Speedman
A political aide tries to corral his brash, outspoken boss when a young researcher at a newspaper gets word of a scandal that could make or break both of their careers. (World Premiere)

Sword of Trust
Director: Lynn Shelton
Screenwriters: Lynn Shelton, Mike O’Brien
Cast: Marc Maron, Jon Bass, Michaela Watkins, Jillian Bell, Toby Huss, Dan Bakkedahl, Tim Paul, Whitmer Thomas
A curmudgeonly pawnshop owner and his man-child sidekick team up with an out of town couple to cash in on a family heirloom: a sword believed by alt history conspiracy nuts to be proof that the South won the Civil War. (World Premiere)

Villains
Directors/Screenwriters: Dan Berk, Robert Olsen
Cast: Bill Skarsgard, Maika Monroe, Kyra Sedgwick, Jeffrey Donovan
When a pair of amateur criminals break into a suburban home, they stumble upon a dark secret and two sadistic homeowners who will do anything to keep it from getting out. (World Premiere)

The Wall of Mexico
Directors: Zachary Cotler, Magdalena Zyzak
Screenwriter: Zachary Cotler
Cast: Jackson Rathbone, Esai Morales, Marisol Sacramento, Carmela Zumbado, Alex Meneses, Moises Arias, with Mariel Hemingway, and Xander Berkeley
A young white handyman, hired by a wealthy Mexican-American family to upkeep their ranch, finds himself caught between disgruntled locals and the family’s outrageously decadent daughters and discovers that something quite unusual is happening at the ranch. (World Premiere)


DOCUMENTARY SPOTLIGHT

Any One Of Us
Director: Fernando Villena
Through the inspiring journey of a recovering athlete, Any One of Us offers an unprecedented glimpse into the traumatic world of spinal cord injuries. (World Premiere)

Autonomy
Director: Alex Horwitz
A feature documentary about the emerging technology of self-driving vehicles and the big questions they raise: what is control and who do we become as we relinquish it to machines? (World Premiere)

Bellingcat — Truth in a Post-Truth World
Director/Screenwriter: Hans Pool
Bellingcat — Truth in a Post-Truth World explores the exclusive world of Bellingcat, a highly-skilled and controversial collective of “citizen investigative journalists” dedicated to redefining breaking news in the 21st century. (North American Premiere)

Breakthrough
Director/Screenwriter: Bill Haney
Breakthrough tells the story of a renegade, blues-playing, Nobel prize-winning Texas scientist who created a cure for the world’s deadliest disease. Narrated by Woody Harrelson with a country-blues soundtrack. (World Premiere)

Building the American Dream
Director: Chelsea Hernandez
In Texas, construction workers face the deadliest conditions in the country. Building the American Dream follows three immigrant families who are rising up to seek justice and equality in an industry rife with exploitation. (World Premiere)

Community First, A Home for the Homeless
Director: Layton Blaylock
Community First, A Home for the Homeless is a feature documentary about a totally unique concept for mitigating homelessness. Conceived and created in Austin, Texas, Community First! Village is truly transforming the lives of homeless people. (World Premiere)

Derek Reich
(Photo by Derek Reich)

Human Nature
Director: Adam Bolt
Screenwriters: Adam Bolt, Regina Sobel
A once-in-a-lifetime scientific discovery called CRISPR gives us the power to change what it means to be human. Now it’s up to us to decide how far we should go. (World Premiere)

I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth Vs. Michelle Carter
Director: Erin Lee Carr
Teen Michelle Carter’s actions shocked a nation — but what really happened behind closed doors? This HBO special showcases the prosecution’s point of view and alternately the defense’s. Which side do you fall on? (World Premiere)

It Started As a Joke
Directors: Julie Smith Clem, Ken Druckerman
It Started As a Joke documents the decade-long run of the Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival. The film celebrates Eugene’s unique brand of humor and reminds us of the healing properties of comedy – even in the most challenging of life’s circumstances. (World Premiere)

Jump Shot
Director: Jacob Ryan Hamilton
Jump Shot uncovers the inspiring true story of Kenny Sailors, the developer of the modern day jump shot in basketball, and how he defined the game, but why the game never defined him. (World Premiere)

Kathy Griffin: A Hell of a Story
Director: Troy Miller
Screenwriter: Kathy Griffin
In her first ever comedy concert film, Comedian Kathy Griffin details the aftermath of lost work and being the subject of a federal investigation following the release of her now infamous photo depicting President Donald J Trump. (World Premiere)

Charlie Gross
(Photo by Charlie Gross)

Qualified
Director: Jenna Ricker
In the world of motorsports, the Indianapolis 500 has long been considered the only race. In May 1977, Janet Guthrie — the first woman to attempt Indy — earned herself a spot in the prestigious field of 33. (World Premiere)

Red Dog
Directors: Casey Pinkston, Luke Dick
In the early 1980s, the only family that toddler Luke knew were the strippers, bouncers, and outcasts that made OKC’s rowdiest strip club their home. (World Premiere)

The River and the Wall
Director: Ben Masters
Five friends venture into the unknown wilds of the Texas borderlands to document the environment before a wall is built. As the wilderness gives way to the bustling Rio Grande Valley, they encounter the unexpected and enter uncharted emotional waters. (World Premiere)

Running with Beto
Director: David Modigliani
Follow Beto O’Rourke behind the scenes of his breakaway campaign to unseat Ted Cruz in the US Senate. With intimate access to the candidate, his family and team, the film captures Beto’s rise from a virtual unknown to a national political sensation. (World Premiere)

Sunset over Mulholland Drive
Director: Uli Gaulke
Screenwriters: Uli Gaulke, Marc Pitzke
The vital power of creativity — a behind the scenes look into Hollywood’s retirement home. (North American Premiere)


VISIONS

Tim Pipe
(Photo by Tim Pipe)

Becoming Leslie
Director: Tracy Frazier
Screenwriters: Sandra Guardado, Tracy Frazier
Becoming Leslie reveals the inner and bizarre world of Leslie Cochran, a cross-dressing homeless misfit who became the most iconic and unlikely civic symbol of Austin, Texas. (World Premiere)

The Garden Left Behind
Director: Flavio Alves
Screenwriters: John Rotondo, Flavio Alves
Cast: Michael Madsen, Ed Asner, Carlie Guevara, Danny Flaherty, Alex Kruz, Anthony Abdo, Dawn Young, Tamara M. Williams, Miriam Cruz, Brock Yurich
A Mexican trans woman struggles to build a life for herself as an undocumented immigrant in New York City. (World Premiere)

J.R. “Bob” Dobbs and The Church of the SubGenius
Director: Sandy K Boone
Screenwriters: Sandy K Boone, Jason Wehling
This film explores the underground movement that has galvanized the imaginative, the artistic, the nerdy, even the deranged – to examine the simmering dystopia in their culture, and do absolutely nothing about it… except, maybe, poke fun at it all. (World Premiere)

Jezebel
Director/Screenwriter: Numa Perrier
Cast: Tiffany Tenille, Numa Perrier, Stephen Barrington, Bobby Field, Brett Gelman, Rockwelle Dortch, Zoe Tyson, Dennis Jaffee, Jessa Zarubica
A true story. In the last days of her mother’s life, 19-year-old Tiffany crashes with five family members in a Las Vegas studio apartment. In order to make ends meet, her sister, a phone sex operator, introduces her to the world of fetish cam girls. (World Premiere)

Leave the Bus Through the Broken Window (Hong Kong, U.S.)
Director: Andrew Hevia
A broken-hearted filmmaker navigates an unfamiliar city, an international art fair and his personal baggage in this intimate, playful and unexpectedly comedic documentary. (World Premiere)

Robert Rodriguez
(Photo by Robert Rodriguez)

One Man Dies a Million Times (Belarus)
Director/Screenwriter: Jessica Oreck
Cast: Alyssa Lozovskaya, Maksim Blinov
Set in the future, a story about seeds and genetic diversity, about growth and decay, about love and war, and about hunger of all kinds. (World Premiere)

Red 11
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Screenwriters: Robert Rodriguez, Racer Rodriguez
Cast: Roby Attal, Lauren Hatfield, Carlos Gallardo, Alejandro Rose Garcia, Rebel Rodriguez, Racer Rodriguez, Eman Esfandi, Steven Brudniak, Brently Heilbron, Pierce Foster Bailey
Rob, an independent filmmaker, loses his investor’s money only to find out his investors are the Cartel. He checks himself into a medical research facility to pay off his debt, but quickly realizes it won’t be that easy. (World Premiere)

Romantic Comedy (United Kingdom)
Director: Elizabeth Sankey
Musician and writer Elizabeth Sankey investigates the past, present and future of romantic comedies, assisted by a chorus of critics, actors and filmmakers. (World Premiere)

Sakawa
Director/Screenwriter: Ben Asamoah
What human story lies behind the phenomenon of ‘internet fraud’? In Sakawa we meet three Ghanaian youngsters who, out of desperation, turn to internet scamming with the help of black magic. (North American Premiere)

Tito
Director/Screenwriter: Grace Glowicki
Cast: Grace Glowicki, Ben Petrie
A desperate man seeks refuge from the predators hunting him by befriending a cheerful intruder. (World Premiere)


EPISODIC PREMIERES

David Makes Man
Showrunner: Dee Harris-Lawrence
Screenwriter: Tarell Alvin McCraney
Cast: Akili McDowell, Nathaniel McIntyre, Isaiah Johnson, Ade Chike Torbert, Cayden Williams, Jordan Bolger, Travis Coles, Phylicia Rashad, Alana Arenas
A richly layered, deeply personal work about a 14-year-old prodigy from the projects who is haunted by the death of his closest friend. Set in South Florida, the series is inspired by events in McCraney’s own life, exploring childhood trauma and the power of imagination. (World Premiere)

NOS4A2
Showrunner/Screenwriter: Jami O’Brien
Cast List: Zachary Quinto, Ashleigh Cummings, Jahkara J. Smith, Olafur Olafsson, Virginia Kull, Ebon Moss-Bachrach
NOS4A2 introduces Vic, a young woman who has a supernatural ability to find lost things. This ability puts her on a collision course with the evil and immortal Charlie Manx, a supernatural villain who feeds off the souls of children. (World Premiere)

Ramy
Showrunner: Bridget Bedard
Screenwriter: Ramy Youssef
Cast: Ramy Youssef, Mohammed Amer, Hiam Abbass, Amr Waked, May Calamawy, David Merheje, Laith Nakli, Steve Way
Ramy, a first generation American Muslim on a spiritual journey, explores the challenges of being caught in between an Egyptian community that thinks life is moral a test, and a millennial generation that thinks life has no consequences. (World Premiere)

Shrill
Showrunner: Alexandra Rushfield
Screenwriters: Alexandra Rushfield, Lindy West and Aidy Bryant
Cast: Aidy Bryant, Lolly Adefope, Luka Jones, Ian Owens, John Cameron Mitchell
From Executive Producers Lorne Michaels and Elizabeth Banks comes Shrill, a comedy series starring Aidy Bryant (Saturday Night Live) as Annie, a fat young woman who wants to change her life — but not her body. Annie is trying to start her career while juggling bad boyfriends, a sick parent, and a perfectionist boss. (World Premiere)

What We Do in the Shadows
Showrunners: Jemaine Clement, Paul Simms
Screenplay: Jemaine Clement
Cast: Matt Berry, Kayvan Novak, Natasia Demetriou, Harvey Guillén, Mark Proksch
Based on the feature film of the same name from Jemaine Clement and Taika Waititi, FX’s new comedy What We Do in the Shadows follows vampire roommates who have lived together for hundreds and hundreds of years. (World Premiere)


24 BEATS PER SECOND

Jacques Cheuiche
(Photo by Jacques Cheuiche)

Amazônia Groove
Director/Screenwriter: Bruno Murtinho
Leaving Belem and crossing much of the Para State Amazon region, its towns and riverside villages, Amazônia Groove reveals artists and their traditions, faith and mysticism, music and life that pound in the northern region of Brazil. (North American Premiere)

Bluebird
Director: Brian Loschiavo
Discover the origin stories of megastars like Garth Brooks and Taylor Swift while following emerging singer-songwriters as they chase their dreams inside The Bluebird Cafe, Nashville’s accidental landmark that has altered the course of music history. (World Premiere)

The Boy Band Con: The Lou Pearlman Story
Director: Aaron Kunkel
The Boy Band Con: The Lou Pearlman Story charts the life and crimes of boy band impresario Lou Pearlman. The film tracks his life from discovering NSYNC and Backstreet Boys, to his perpetration of one of the largest ponzi schemes in US history. (World Premiere)

Boy Howdy! The Story of CREEM Magazine
Director: Scott Crawford
Screenwriters: Scott Crawford, Jaan Uhelszki
Ripping back the curtain on legendary rock rag CREEM Magazine’s wild and disruptive newsroom; a dysfunctional band of unruly outsiders who weren’t all that different from the artists they covered. (World Premiere)

Brainiac: Transmissions After Zero
Director: Eric Mahoney
The film explores the seminal ’90s band Brainiac from Dayton, OH and its creative force Tim Taylor. Just days before signing a major record contract Taylor was killed in a bizarre auto accident leaving his family and bandmates to pick up the pieces. (World Premiere)

Carmine Street Guitars
Director: Ron Mann
Screenwriter: Len Blum
Five Days in the life of Greenwich Village guitar shop Carmine Street Guitars.

Herman Nijhof - Courtesy of New Zealand Film Commission
(Photo by Herman Nijhof courtesy of New Zealand Film Commission)

The Chills: The Triumph and Tragedy of Martin Phillipps
Director: Julia Parnell, Rob Curry
New Zealand music genius Martin Phillipps fights his creative demons, conquers the music world, inspires a generation, and then retreats into depression, addiction and anonymity. (World Premiere)

David Crosby: Remember My Name
Director: A.J. Eaton
David Crosby reflects on his life of music stardom, while forging new paths to relevancy at his age of 77 in this deeply personal documentary. (World Premiere)

Everybody’s Everything
Directors: Sebastian Jones, Ramez Silyan
Everybody’s Everything is the story of artist Lil Peep (Gustav Ahr) from his birth in Long Island and meteoric rise as a genre blending pop star & style icon, to his death due to an accidental opioid overdose in Arizona at just 21 years of age. (World Premiere)

The Gift: The Journey of Johnny Cash
Director: Thom Zimny
Screenwriter: Warren Zanes
Johnny Cash stands among the giants of 20th century American life. But his story remains tangled in mystery and myth. This documentary brings Cash the man out from behind the legend. (World Premiere)

Mr. Jimmy
Director: Peter Michael Dowd
Dowd Akio Sakurai has dedicated his life to honoring Jimmy Page. For 30 years he recreated vintage Zeppelin concerts note-for-note in small Tokyo clubs. Moving to L.A. to pursue his tribute dream, cultures clash and Akio’s idyllic vision meets reality. (World Premiere)

Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub
Director: Jeff Sandmann
Screenwriters: Jeff Sandmann, Jeffrey Brown, Lisa Kay Pfannenstiel
Nothing Stays the Same celebrates the last 30 years of live music in Austin, while also examining the challenges faced by musicians and music venues in one of the fastest-growing cities in the country, all through the lens of the legendary Saxon Pub. (World Premiere)

Courtesy of Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub
(Photo by Courtesy of Nothing Stays The Same: The Story of The Saxon Pub)

Show Me The Picture: The Story of Jim Marshall
Director: Alfred George Bailey
Jim Marshall was a maverick with a camera. An outsider who captured the heights of Rock’N’Roll music and the seismic changes of an era, from the Beatles and Jimi Hendrix, to the civil rights movements and some of the most iconic moments of the ’60s. (World Premiere)

Strange Negotiations
Director: Brandon Vedder
A documentary exploring the existential, artistic and family life of musician and former evangelical, David Bazan (Pedro The Lion), set against America’s own crisis of faith highlighted during the 2016 presidential election. (World Premiere)

Teen Spirit
Director/Screenwriter: Max Minghella
Cast: Elle Fanning
The film follows Violet, a shy teenager who enters an international singing competition with the help of an unlikely mentor. Driven by a pop-fueled soundtrack, Teen Spirit is a visceral and stylish spin on the Cinderella story. (U.S. Premiere)

Who Let The Dogs Out
Director: Brent Hodge
Screenwriters: Brent Hodge, John Diemer, Jasleen Kaur
The origin story of the smash hit “Who Let the Dogs Out” goes back further than anyone could have imagined; steeped in legal battles, female empowerment and artist integrity, which beckons the question: will we ever know who let the dogs out? (World Premiere)

Wild Rose
Director: Tom Harper
Screenwriter: Nicole Taylor
Cast: Jessie Buckley, Julie Walters, Sophie Okonedo
A musician from Glasgow dreams of becoming a Nashville star. (U.S. Premiere)


GLOBAL

Aleksi
Director/Screenwriter: Barbara Vekarić
Cast: Tihana Lazović, Goran Marković, Sebastian Cavazza, Nataša Janjić, Jason Mann, Aljoša Vučović, Neda Arnerić, Leon Lučev
A character piece about funny and troubled girl in her 20s, forced to move back in with her overbearing family. (North American Premiere)

Aurora
Director/Screenwriter: Miia Tervo
Cast: Mimosa Willamo, Amir Escandari, Oona Airola, Hannu-Pekka Björkman, Miitta Sorvali
Aurora, a commitment-phobic party animal, meets Iranian Amir one night at a hot-dog stand in Lapland. Amir is running from death and Aurora is running from love. They need each other in order to finally stop running. (North American Premiere)

Being Impossible
Director: Patricia Ortega
Screenwriters: Patricia Ortega, Enmanuel Chávez
A young woman discovers she was submitted to several surgeries to correct her intersexual body as a baby. She has to find her own self outside gender binaries. (North American Premiere)

Cachada: The Opportunity
Director/Screenwriter: Marlén Viñayo
Five Salvadoran saleswomen want to take their cruel life stories to the stage. During the rehearsal process of their play, they’ll discover themselves as victims and victimizers in a cycle of violence that has plagued their families for generations. (World Premiere)

Days of the Whale
Director/Screenwriter: Catalina Arroyave Restrepo
Cast: Laura Tobón, David Escallón, Carlos Fonnegra, Christian Tappan, Julián Giraldo, Natalia Castaño, Margarita Restrepo
Two young graffiti artists of Medellín defy a criminal gang when they decide to paint the mural of a whale over a threat written in a wall. (World Premiere)

La Mala Noche
Director/Screenwriter: Gabriela Calvache
Cast: Nöelle Schönwald, Cristian Mercado, Jaime Tamariz, Ariana Freire
She is the perfect woman until she decides to be free. (World Premiere)

Vai
Directors: Nicole Whippy, ‘Ofa-Ki-Levuka Guttenbeil-Likiliki, Matasila Freshwater, Amberley Jo Aumua, Mīria George, Marina Alofagia McCartney, Dianna Fuemana, Becs Arahanga
Vai is a portmanteau feature film by nine Polynesian directors and filmed on seven different pacific islands. It is about the journey of empowerment through culture, over the lifetime of one woman, Vai. (World Premiere)

X&Y
Director: Anna Odell
Screenwriters: Anna Odell, Jakob Beckman
Cast: Anna Odell, Mikael Persbrandt, Trine Dyrholm, Vera Vitali, Shanti Roney, Sofie Gråbøl, Jens Albinus, Thure Lindhardt
Swedish director and visual artist, Anna Odell (The Reunion), conducts a social experiment in which she aims to challenge the gender roles that men and women have in the society of today. (North American Premiere)


SPECIAL EVENTS

Kurt Volk
(Photo by Kurt Volk)

How Rednecks Saved Hollywood with Joe Bob Briggs
Director/Screenwriter: Joe Bob Briggs
America’s drive-in movie critic uses 200 video clips and photos to tell the 500-year history of the American redneck in a multimedia comedy performance.

Love, Death & Robots
Showrunners: David Fincher, Tim Miller, Josh Donen, Jennifer Miller
Love, Death & Robots, an animated anthology series presented by Tim Miller and David Fincher, is a genre orgy of Not-Suitable-For-Mainstream shorts. (World Premiere)
Followed by extended Q&A with with Tim Miller and David Fincher.

Ra: Path of the Sun God
Director: Lesley Keen
Austin based electronic and experimental label Holodeck Records is partnering with Austin Film Society for a special live re-score screening of the 1990 animated film Ra: Path of the Sun God, a beautiful re-telling of one of Ancient Egypt’s most famous myths.

Rebel Without A Crew: Filmmaking Master Class with Robert Rodriguez
Join Robert Rodriguez as he gives a master-class in micro-budget guerilla filmmaking, featuring behind the scenes moments from his new $7,000 film, RED 11. The event will be followed by the World Premiere of RED 11.

Shangri-La
Directors: Morgan Neville, Jeff Malmberg
An intimate look at the creative process through the lens of legendary music producer Rick Rubin.

True Stories
Director: David Byrne
Screenwriters: Stephen Tobolowsky, Beth Henley, David Byrne
David Byrne’s 1986 musical comedy, inspired by theater director Robert Wilson, tabloid newspapers, and filmmakers Robert Altman and Federico Fellini, remains a unique artistic vision that celebrates the singular citizens of a fictional Texas town. David Byrne will appear in-person for Q&A following a screening of new 4K restoration.

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