'Bandslam' Rocks the Red Carpet in Austin

Bobby Bones at Bandslam Red Carpet Premiere

As a volunteer for South by Southwest (SXSW) Conferences and Festivals Special Venues Crew in the past, I've helped out at many film premieres and so have some experience at red-carpet events. However, last week was the first time I experienced the media side of the red carpet, at a local sneak preview of Bandslam, which was shot here in Austin in 2008.

I was a bit nervous before the event, so to boost my confidence I read Jette's blog entry on red-carpet lessons. I wanted to make sure I was able to cover both audio and video, so I was well equipped with cameras, digital voice recorder, camcorder, and even "The Poor Man's Steadicam" from my favorite tech geek, Johnny Chung Lee. With temperatures hitting the triple digits, I remembered Jette's advice and packed several bottles of water.

The Bandslam red carpet had a few extras not often seen at previews or even premieres. Because a large portion of the film was shot in Austin and featured a couple of Austin bands, a performance was set up in the courtyard at Galaxy Highland. Local bands Joker and The Daze performed outdoors as folks waited to be ushered in for the screening. In the film, the members of Joker played the backing band for one of the main characters, and The Daze were seen as themselves in the "Bandslam" battle of the bands competition. Check out a photo of Joker after the jump:

Joker at Bandslam Red Carpet Premiere in Austin by antsnax on Flickr

Also in attendance was local radio celebrity Bobby Bones (pictured at top) of 96.7 KISS FM, who has a small role as the emcee at the Bandslam competition. I had an opportunity to chat with Bobby on the red carpet, and asked him about his role in the movie. His response:

"My role is so not important, and I kept that in perspective. I'm just a goofball guy that gets on stage and introduces the bands. I just hope I make the movie. I can go home and say 'Look mom, I really did make it.'"

He also talked about the movie's impact on the local film and music industries:

"I think they picked the right city to use to cast and shoot the movie in with all the live music because they found all these bands pretty easily. I was there for the audition process. They had an open call, and they said, 'We need young bands.' Next thing you know, 30-40 young bands showed up. They were able to find an entire major-budget movie full of bands from right here in the city. It does say a lot that the music in Austin is really good, and good enough to support an entire movie."

Bandslam opens in theaters on Friday, August 14. The Daze and Joker are throwing an opening night party at Jovita's to celebrate the occasion, with free admittance with a ticket stub from the movie ($2 entry without ticket stub).

[Photo Credit: Debbie Cerda, on Flickr. More photos here.]