SXSW Announces Its 2012 Features


Somebody Up There Likes Me

SXSW announced its film lineup today, which is full of all kinds of features and documentaries. The big splashy Hollywood news is that the movie 21 Jump Street, starring Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill, will premiere at the fest as its Centerpiece Film. In addition, the closing-night film will be the music documentary Big Easy Express from Emmett Malloy.

One marquee movie with a Texas connection is the Dallas-set Killer Joe, reuniting Bug filmmaker William Friedkin and playwright Tracy Letts, and starring Matthew McConaughey (and that's not the only film he's in that will play SXSW). Other notable movies playing the fest include Bobcat Goldthwait's God Bless America, the Will Ferrell-starring Casa de mi Padre and Guy Maddin's Keyhole ... among many many others announced.

SXSW Film has no Lone Star States category this year, but the overall lineup of narrative and documentary features includes many local and state connections. We'll have a full list later this month of all the Austin and Texas features and shorts screening at the fest this year. In the meantime, here are some Lone Star-connected films that stuck out in today's announcement:

  • Gayby (Narrative Feature Competition)-- Jonathan Lisecki has expanded his popular 2010 short of the same name. It stars Jenn Harris and Matthew Wilkas (from the short) as well as Dule Hill and Samantha Buck. The cast also includes Austinites Alex Karpovsky and Anna Margaret Hollyman. Dallas-to-Austin filmmaker Clay Liford (Wuss) is director of photography.
  • Somebody Up There Likes Me (Narrative Spotlight, pictured at top) -- The latest feature from Bob Byington (Harmony and Me) will have its world premiere at the fest. The movie stars Keith Poulson, Nick Offerman (also in Casa de mi Padre), Jess Weixler and Kevin Corrigan. The cast also includes local actors Chris Doubek, Andrew Bujalski, Allison Latta, Anna Margaret Hollyman (also in Gayby) and Jonny Mars ... and once again, Bob Schneider as a wedding singer. The trailer is already available on the film's website
  • The Do-Deca-Pentathlon (Narrative Spotlight) -- Former Austinites Jay and Mark Duplass directed this movie about two brothers and their private athletic competition. The movie stars another former Austinite, Steve Zissis (Baghead), and Mark Kelly.
  • America's Parking Lot (Documentary Spotlight) -- Austin actor Jonny Mars has directed this documentary about diehard Dallas Cowboy fans. The project received a Texas Filmmakers Production Fund grant in 2009.
  • Trash Dance -- Yes, this is the documentary about the "dancing" garbage trucks, from Houston filmmaker Andrew Garrison.
  • Sun Don't Shine (Emerging Visions) -- Texas actor Mark Reeb (The Overbrook Brothers) is in the cast of this Florida thriller.
  • Wolf -- This feature from Ya'Ke Smith (Katrina's Son) received a Texas Filmmakers Production Fund grant in 2011. It stars Beaumont actress Irma P. Hall.
  • Kid-Thing (Festival Favorites) -- Fresh from its premiere at Sundance, this feature from the Zellner brothers is Austin-bound.
  • Bernie (Special Events) -- Richard Linklater's latest feature, which premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in 2011, will have a special screening at SXSW. The movie stars Jack Black, Shirley MacLaine and Matthew McConaughey.

You can find a full listing of films on the SXSW website. Don't forget the features the fest has already announced, including its opening-night film (and Joss Whedon). SXSW will announce its short films and midnight selections next week.

Edited to add: Please go read Kimberley Jones' brief Q&A with SXSW Film Producer Janet Pierson. Pierson explains what happened to the Lone Star category as well as other changes and news related to this year's lineup.

[Photo credit: "Nick Offerman in Somebody Up There Likes Me" captured from the film's trailer.]

The Taiwan Oyster

The Taiwan Oyster, is a Texas based film and crew you didn't mention.

Somebody Up There Likes Me

Stephanie Hunt in the 'Somebody' movie is from Austin.