Slackery News Tidbits: August 4, 2014

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Grow Up, Tony Phillips posterHere's the latest Austin and Texas film news.

  • SXSW 2013 selection Grow Up, Tony Phillips (Elizabeth's review) now has a distribution date. The family-friendly coming-of-age Halloween movie, written and directed by former Austinite Emily Hagins, will reach VOD and DVD on September 30, 2014. The VOD outlets will include Amazon, iTunes, Hulu and Vudu. The locally shot production also released a new poster by Jay Shaw (pictured at right), which is part of its Kickstarter perks (the film raised $80,000 in crowdfunding in 2012). [Full disclosure: I donated to this Kickstarter campaign.]
  • Hollywood Reporter recently published its annual list of Top 25 U.S. Film Schools -- and The University of Texas at Austin is #10 on the list for its radio-television-film program. (The University of Southern California topped the list.) The article lauds the university's "Semester in L.A." program and new 3D production program, as well as noting the recent $50 million gift from the Moody Foundation. (UT is also one of the more affordable universities in the top ten.)
  • The Texas Archive of the Moving Image (TAMI) has unveiled a new online exhibit: "Starring the Lone Star State." The collection includes a wealth of video footage related to Texas filmmaking, from silent films through contemporary movies. Newsreel footage from the Galveston hurricane in 1900, video from the set of The Alamo (1960, John Wayne), Cactus Pryor interviwing Ann-Margret ... prepare to spend a lot of time here. 
  • Austin City Councill will be considering a zoning change on Aug. 7 for the demolition of a building at 619 Congress, to make way for a boutique hotel, the Austin Chronicle reports. What does this have to do with film, you might ask? The problem is that the building shares a wall with The Hideout, a film venue for Austin Film Festival and other events, which has also been used as the Film Badgeholders Lounge for SXSW in recent years. (It's also a good resting place before/after a movie at Paramount or State.) The Hideout is very concerned about the possibility of dealing with a damaged wall and how a big construction project will affect its ability to remain open. (I am concerned about my ability to find a quiet place to write downtown during big film festivals, since Little City's long gone too.)
  • If you're in L.A., get over to the Ace Hotel at Sundance NextFest next Saturday, August 9 at 1 pm for a special screening of Kumiko, the Treasure Hunter (Debbie's review). Not only will Austin filmmakers David and Nathan Zellner be there for a post-screening panel, but they'll be answering questions from panelist Werner Herzog. Yes, that Werner Herzog, moderating the Zellners. Pretty damn amazing. (I like to think the audience will be too intimidated to ask dumb questions.)
  • At SXSW 2012, competitive eater Hungry Todd Rungy premiered the pilot for a new show about his quest for fame, appropriately titled The Hungry Todd Rungy Show. Jordan talked with Rungy producer Joshua Riehl and Rungy at the fest. Now the show is about to premiere on YouTube, and you can catch a sneak peek on Tuesday, August 12 at 8:30 pm at ColdTowne Theater.
  • Let's end with a video from the Texas band The Painted Redstarts for the song "Curtains Wide." The band includes William Harries Graham, whose father is Jon Dee Graham, and Marlon Sexton, whose dad is Charlie Sexton. But the real reason I'm including this video is that it's directed by UT instructor/Austin filmmaker Geoff Marslett (Loves Her Gun). It does get a little flickery (warning in case you get migraines) but is certainly worth watching and listening. [via Blurt Online]

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Actor Robert De Niro angered many New Yorkers when he donated his archival materials to a museum in which city?
Hint: it's a city that begins with "A" and rhymes with "Blaustin".