Slackery News Tidbits, August 27


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

  • Austin-based film composer Brian Satterwhite has been commissioned by the Dallas Chamber Symphony to compose scores for two silent films, including A Sailor-Made Man, a Harold Lloyd film about a boy who accidentally enlists in the Navy to impress a girl, according to Satterwhite's blog. The scores will be performed live during the entire second half of the screenings on Nov. 13 and and Feb. 26 at the new Dallas City Performance Hall.
  • IndieWire reported that University of Texas alumnus Todd Berger's film It's a Disaster, which premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival, has been picked up by Oscilloscope for North American distribution. The ensemble comedy, starring America Ferrera and Julia Stiles, is about a group of friends who experience an apocalyptic bomb explosion during brunch. 
  • Speaking of films with local ties that premiered at LAFF ... the Austin-shot movie Saturday Morning Massacre took home the Best Feature prize at the Minneapolis Underground Film Festival last weekend. Check out Jette's review and Virginia's interviews with cast and crew, including producer Jonny Mars and director Spencer Parsons.
  • Looking to stay on top of the filmmaking game? The eighth annual Business of Film Conference will take place Sept. 8 at the Rice University Media Center in Houston, according to Short Film Texas. Film industry professionals, such as opening speaker and distribution strategist Peter Broderick, will share their advice and experience to filmmakers. Rebecca Campbell, Austin Film Society executive director, and Rick Ferguson, Houston Film Commission executive director, will discuss the state of the Texas Filmmaking Union.
  • Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar announced that the theater now has a new all-time highest-grossing film. Which blockbuster has replaced Avatar at the top of the list? It's the very non-blockbuster-y Moonrise Kingdom, from Texas native Wes Anderson, and it's still playing at Alamo if you haven't seen it yet (Jette's review).
  • Actor Carlos Gallardo will join Austin-based director Robert Rodriguez and his band Chingon for the 20th anniversary celebration of Rodriguez's first feature-film, El MariachiAFS announced.
  • Further celebrations are in order for Emmy-nominated and award-winning documentary Where Soldiers Come From (Jette's review), which will have its encore performance on POV on Sept. 6. Austin-based filmmaker Heather Courtney's film, about the lives of small-town childhood friends who enlist in the U.S. National Guard after graduating high school, made its way through the TIFN circuit last spring and has since signed with New Day Films for educational distribution.
  • Finally, on Friday night, NBC Nightly News included a story about the revival of drive-in theaters that spotlighted the local Blue Starlite Mini Urban Drive-in. You can watch the video clip below.