Quick Snaps: 'Pioneer' at SXSW


Pioneer Filmmakers and Star

I didn't get to see many SXSW short films this year, but I made sure to find time for Pioneer, the latest from Dallas-area filmmaker David Lowery, which won the Narrative Shorts Jury Award at SXSW. Lowery did most of the SXSW 2010 bumpers (the micro-shorts promoting the fest that play before each film), and also directed one of my favorite features of SXSW 2009, St. Nick.

Pioneer premiered at Sundance this year. It's minimalist in setup -- theoretically, a simple bedtime story scene between a father and son. But the film is beautifully shot by David Blood, and the outcome of the short itself will have you thinking for awhile afterward. Myles Brooks plays the little boy, and Will Oldham the dad. It's Brooks's first time onscreen, but Oldham has acted in a number of indie films (Wendy and Lucy, The Guatamalan Handshake) but is also a musician under the name Bonnie Prince Billy.

Debbie Cerda took the photo above at the Narrative Shorts screening at SXSW, of which Pioneer was a part. That's producer James A. Johnston, writer/director Lowery, actor Brooks, and producer Toby Halbrooks. Pioneer screened at Dallas International Film Festival over the weekend. Its next stop is the Independent Film Festival of Boston at the end of this month.

Here's another photo Debbie took at the screening of the SXSW shorts that included Pioneer, of the delightful budding actor Myles Brooks:

Myles and SXSW

As for St. Nick, it hasn't played in Austin since SXSW 2009. I'd really like to see it again. Lowery has been dropping hints on his blog that we may hear news about some theatrical dates soon, and I have a good feeling that one of those screenings will be in Austin. I'm also looking forward to the DVD, which Lowery says is in the (unnamed) distributor's hands.

[Photo credit: Debbie Cerda]