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Tag: SXSW Festival (1-10 of 103)

SXSW Grand Jury winner 'The Great Invisible' gets U.S. distribution

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RADiUS-TWC has acquired the U.S. rights to the The Great Invisible,  the eco-documentary which won the Grand Jury Award at the South by Southwest Film Festival earlier this year. Written and directed by Margaret Brown, the film chronicles the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf Coast through the perspectives of the area’s survivors, fishermen, and oil men. Brown travels through towns in Alabama, Louisiana, and Texas, interviewing residents still reeling from the damage to the environment and the local fishing industry.

The Great Invisible is slated for release later this year.

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SXSW: 2014 Jury and Special Award winners announced

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The South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival announced the winners of this year’s Jury and Special Award winners in a ceremony held Tuesday night in Austin, Texas, and hosted by comedian Jerrod Carmichael (Neighbors). Among the winners are Richard Linklater’s Boyhood (Louis Black “Lone Star” Award) and True Detective (Excellence in Title Design).

Check out the complete list of winners below:

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SXSW: Marshmallows unite at 'Veronica Mars'

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Seven years and a famous Kickstarter campaign in the making, Veronica Mars finally made its grand jump from small to big screen on Saturday afternoon at the SXSW festival. Rob Thomas’ movie, brisk and fun and full of throwback love to the cult series, opens with Kristen Bell’s Veronica leaving a thriving life in New York City when her forever flame Logan (Jason Dohring, fine as ever) is suspected of murder. Her trip home to Neptune, Calif., coincides with her high school’s 10-year reunion, an event she’d penciled in years ago to studiously avoid. For fans of the series—and if you’ve never indulged, you’ve got a delightful binge ahead of you—it was a joy to see the old gang back together. The great folks behind Wallace, Dick, Weevil, Mac, Piz, Madison, Deputy Leo, and Best Dad Ever Keith Mars were all in Austin to celebrate, and treated the enthusiastic audience to a loose Q&A after the screening.

“This is such an extra special experience because it’s so humbling to know that the reason we’re here is because of you guys and because of all of our Kickstarter friends,” said Bell. In a humble nod to Kickstarter fans’ generous support, Chris Lowell (Piz) said, “I’m just shocked that I’m either on this stage or in the film. I thought I was going to have to be the $10,000 backer to have a speaking line.” When one fan asked Thomas, the man behind both the TV show and movie, when we might expect a stage version of  Veronica Mars, the director joked, “I’m working on the book for the musical right now.”

Of all the afternoon’s adorable moments, none topped Enrico Colantoni’s (Keith) response to being asked how it felt to reunite with on-screen daughter Veronica after all this time. “She was this big, and then she was this big,” Colantoni said of Bell, gesturing to chest height and then chin height. “But like any parent will tell, it doesn’t matter how old they get, you still can’t not look at them like they were”—he paused, to lower his hand back down—”this big.” And then Veronica and her Dad—yeah, yeah, yeah, you may know them as Bell and Colantoni—had this very dear, slightly teary hug. Marshmallow melt.

SXSW: Fest opens with world premiere of Jon Favreau's 'Chef'

The SXSW Film Festival kicked off last night in Austin with the world premiere of Jon Favreau’s Chef, an easygoing charmer about a man rekindling his bonds with both his craft and young son. The movie, which Favreau wrote, directed, and stars in, marked what was clearly a personally reinvigorating return to his indie roots. Inspired by foodie gems like Eat, Drink, Man, Woman, Big Night, and Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential, Favreau has made a shaggy dog story about a creatively frustrated chef who opens a food truck after losing his restaurant job. He hits the road with his sous chef (John Leguizamo, at his grooviest) and his 11-year-old son (charming newcomer Emjay Anthony), making beautifully-filmed pit stops in foodie meccas New Orleans and Austin. (And did the Austin audience ever appreciate the hometown doting.) Sofia Vergara plays Favreau’s ambivalent ex, and there are cameos from friends-in-high-places Robert Downey Jr., Scarlett Johansson, and Dustin Hoffman.

Favreau was joined on stage by Leguizamo, Anthony, and Oliver Platt (who plays a food blogger whose harsh review at the beginning of the story sends the chef into a tailspin) after the screening for a Q&A. When asked about the theatrical release of the film (it opens on May 9), Favreau sounded relaxed about its box office chances. “It’s going to be swimming in those same shark-infested waters as Iron Man did…and it’s not Iron Man.”

SXSW: 'Wild Canaries' motion posters for the screwball comedy starring Sophia Takal, Alia Shawkat, Jason Ritter -- EXCLUSIVE

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There are two types of people in the world: chaos muppets and order muppets.

For Wild Canaries writer/director Lawrence Michael Levine, an order devotee, his wife, actress and director Sophia Takal is the chaos variety. “It can be very, very funny sometimes for the two of us to be in a living situation together. I think that was something he wanted to explore in a comedy,” Takal told EW. Levine agrees: “Sophia is just so funny and wacky in our everyday life and I really wanted to do a movie that would show that off.”

The result? Wild Canaries — a screwball murder mystery in the vein of The Thin Man series, about a newly engaged couple Barri and Noah (played by Takal and Levine) who both react to the death of their elderly downstairs neighbor in different ways. Barri suspects murder. Noah thinks that’s insane.

“It’s really based on our dynamic. Our real dynamic,” she said. Barri enlists her roommate Jean (Arrested Development’s Alia Shawkat) to aid in the amateur investigation. Everyone is suddenly a suspect — from their deceased neighbor’s son (Kevin Corrigan) to the suave, hipster building owner (Jason Ritter) — and relationships become more fraught than ever as the riotous, high-stakes caper evolves.

“[Levine] wrote it right before we got married, so I think a lot of commitment phobia is in there, too,” Takal says about the film, which is premiering at SXSW. Levine says, “I think a lot of those anxieties that exist as you approach marriage — fear of being betrayed, fear of making a mistake, thinking long and hard about if you really trust somebody — these were things that were on my mind. So when I started to write a murder mystery, the one I came up with reflected those fears.

Adds Takal: “We’re exploring things that are relatable but also couching it in a fun mystery.” READ FULL STORY

SXSW: 11 must-see movies on the menu in Texas

Now in its 27th year, SXSW is like the late bloomer who stuns his parents by announcing his basement-based online venture is now worth a million bucks. The Austin, Texas-based festival isn’t glamorous, like Cannes, or corporate, like Toronto, or even insistently anti-Hollywood, like Sundance. Compared to its more-pedigreed rivals, SXSW is simply more chill. It puts the festive back in festival — there’s a giant music and growing interactive element as well — and artists of all sorts are eager to come to the party. Jimmy Kimmel Live will broadcast there for a week. Lady Gaga will drop in. Wes Anderson is swinging by with The Grand Budapest Hotel.

This year’s SXSW, the 21st edition with a film slate, features 89 world premieres, as well as several titles that will be showing in the U.S. for the first time. All in all, there are 133 feature-length movies to see, which is especially overwhelming since the festival opens Friday night and lasts just nine days. But here are 11 world premieres you shouldn’t miss: READ FULL STORY

SXSW: Aaron Paul has a 'Hellion' on his hands -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

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For about 20 seconds, Hellion seems like it might be a quiet, introspective portrait of two young boys in Southeast Texas — lyricism in the vein of David Gordon Green’s George Washington or Terrence Malick’s, well, everything. Malick’s longtime producer Sarah Green and modern auteur Jeff Nichols even produced it.

Then the motorcycle engines start revving and the atonal dawn sounds turn to screaming guitars. Hellion is something else. Hellion is heavy metal lyrical.

In Kat Candler’s film, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and will also be featured at SXSW, Aaron Paul plays Hollis, a grief-stricken widower and mostly absentee father to two young boys. The eldest, Jacob (the beguiling Josh Wiggins) is a troublemaker and the younger seems to be on the same path. Nothing is easy for this family, and things just continue to go downhill for them when the state steps in.

EW has an exclusive clip of Hellion’s explosive opening. Not even Jesse Pinkman was this angry.

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SXSW: 'Newsroom' star John Gallagher Jr. wishes his girlfriend was in Berlin in 'The Heart Machine' -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

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Cody suspects his girlfriend is lying to him. After all, he’s in Brooklyn, Virginia is an ocean away in Berlin, and they fell in love over the Internet. Who knows if she’s as committed to this relationship as he is — they’ve never even met in person! For all he knows, she could be…  secretly living in New York?

In The Heart Machine, which premieres tomorrow at SXSW in Austin, Tex., The Newsroom‘s John Gallagher Jr. plays Cody, who begins to unravel when his suspicions about Virginia become paranoid obsessions. House of Cards‘s Kate Lyn Sheil is his elegant girlfriend, who professes her love for Cody but is more inclined to keep things online-only for the time being. Is Cody being reverse-Catfished, bamboozled by an actual girlfriend who prefers things at a distance? Or is he simply sabotaging the only real relationship he’s ever had?

Writer/director Zachary Wigon wrote the screenplay after his own relationship survived and thrived during a long-distance spell but then fell apart when they were reunited in the same city. “When she came back, I was struck by how incompatible the two of us were, thinking, ‘Who is this person, and what did they do to the person I was dating over Skype?'” Wigon explained. “And that relationship ended, but I started thinking, ‘What if you had a person who preferred a relationship over Skype to a relationship in person?'”

Click below for the exclusive teaser for The Heart Machine, adapted and expanded from Wigon’s 2012 short, Someone Else’s Heart: READ FULL STORY

SXSW: Tobe Hooper talks about the new, restored version of 'The Texas Chain Saw Massacre' -- EXCLUSIVE POSTER

On Monday, March 10, a forty-year-old terror will return to Austin, Tx., when a newly restored version of horror classic The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is screened at the SXSW Festival ahead of the movie’s theatrical rerelease this summer. “It’s great on the big screen,” says filmmaker Tobe Hooper, who cowrote and directed the infamous 1974 film in the countryside outside of Austin, and also worked on the restoration. “It’s in 7.1 sound that completely wraps around you and in 4K [resolution]. The film works as well, if not better, than it originally did.”

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For 'Game of Thrones' Rose Leslie, the 'Honeymoon' is just beginning -- EXCLUSIVE VIDEO

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Rose Leslie, Ygritte from Game of Thrones, is accustomed to working in severe locales, like Iceland, so she’s only half joking when she says that one of the things that drew her to Honeymoon, the creepy romantic thriller that debuts on March 7 at SXSW, was the North Carolina weather. “I was very happy that I was allowed to wear t-shirts and shorts… and no more fur,” she says. “I was very happy that I wasn’t freezing.”

Honeymoon stars Leslie and Cockneys vs Zombies‘ Harry Treadaway as Bea and Paul, two newlyweds who are spending their first few blissful days as a married couple at a rustic retreat in the sticks. But something goes horribly wrong when Bea goes missing and Paul finds her naked in the woods, completely disoriented with no memory of what happened. “Something terrible and awful happens to Bea, and you see the deep gloominess that happens within her,” Leslie says. “She makes a decision, rightly or wrongly, she does it for love and she does it for what she feels is the best course of action for Paul. It’s ultimately absolutely tormenting.”

Might supernatural forces be at work? (After all, it is playing the Midnighters section of SXSW.) Perhaps. But what attracted Leslie to the project, which is directed by first-time filmmaker Leigh Janiak, was the film’s raw, intimate realism of a relationship. “It’s a very stripped down portrayal, a very honest approach of something that is very shocking and sad,” says Leslie. “The feelings that it evoked when I first read the script was how it explores such an intimate relationship, and one of my favorite movies of all time is Blue Valentine. I love how candidly frank the camera was on that particular film, and just how you were so engrossed with this couple. And loving that film, I kind of wanted to explore the aspects of being in an intimate two-hander feature such as this. It’s a transformation tale and it is that transformation and the love story and the emotional endurance that the characters go through that definitely drew me to it.”

Click below for an exclusive first-look at Honeymoon, which has its world premiere on Friday, March 7, at the SXSW Film Festival in Austin. It will also play this April at the Tribeca Film Festival. READ FULL STORY

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