Slackery News Tidbits, July 30

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Here's the latest in Austin and Texas film news.

  • Tribeca Film recently acquired all North American rights to Austin-based director Bob Byington's offbeat indie comedy Somebody Up There Likes Me (Don's review), Indiewire reported. Byington's follow-up to his 2009 film Harmony and Me stars Keith Poulson and Nick Offerman as best friends who are aided through life by a magic suitcase (Jette's interview with Byington and Offerman). The movie, which premiered at SXSW 2012, is scheduled to have a Spring 2013 theatrical release and will be available for rent on various video-on-demand platforms and iTunes. 
  • Austin independent film has another reason to rejoice with the recent announcement of part-time Austinite Treva Wurmfeld's appearance as one of 25 new faces of independent film by Filmmaker Magazine, Austin Movie Blog reported. Wurmfeld was chosen to be a part of the 15th annual list, which has included other local filmmakers such as Joe Nicolosi and Andrew Bujalski, for her debut feature Shepard & Dark. The documentary chronicles the friendship between writer and archivist Johnny Dark and Hollywood star Sam Shepard. Post-production on the film was completed at Richard Linklater's Detour Productions and is scheduled to make its world premiere this September at the Toronto International Film Festival.
  • The Toronto International Film Festival will also host a special screening of Austin-based director Terrence Malick's new film, To The WonderAustin Movie Blog recently reported. The Oklahoma-shot film, which stars Ben Affleck, Javier Bardem and Rachel McAdams, is about a man who reconnects with a woman from his hometown after his marriage with a European woman ends. The film is also scheduled to screen at next month's Venice International Film Festival, where it will compete for the festival's top prize, the Golden Lion.
  • Speaking of Terrence Malick, his stepson, actor Will Wallace, will direct the film Red Wing in the North Texas town of Whitewright, according to Joe M. O'Connell's blog. Screenwriter Kathleen Orillion, who adapted George Sand's book Le Petite Fadette into the family saga The Marfa Lights for the now defunct Burnt Orange Productions, rejoins Malick for Red Wing. Orillion's collaboration may provide insight into the plot of the film, which is set to star Fort Worth native Bill Paxton; Frances Fisher, who attended high school in Orange, Texas; and Luke Perry.
  • Calling all local filmmakers. The Texas Film Commission announced details of this year's Austin 48 Hour Film Project. The annual competition, which takes place Aug. 24-26, challenges filmmaker teams to write, cast, scout, shoot, edit and submit a film in two days. Submitted films will be screened for the public and judged by a panel of experts. The chosen film will be entered in Filmapalooza 2013, the project's annual awards ceremony in Los Angeles.
  • Austin-based filmmaker Bill Wittliff's decades-long attempt to see his script for A Night in Old Mexico come to life has finally become a reality, according to Joe M. O'Connell's blog. The film, about an older man who heads to Mexico with his grandson after the foreclosure of his ranch, is scheduled to shoot in Brownsville.
  • The stars of the Danish comedy Klown: The Movie (J.C.'s review), which made its U.S. release last Friday, recently spoke with former Austinite Aaron Hillis of Indiewire while on a canoe trip down the Guadalupe River to the Alamo Drafthouse-sponsored open-air Rolling Roadshow screening. The Austin-based theater chain's Drafthouse Films acquired the movie's North American distribution rights earlier this year.