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Austin Convention Centre

Helping to keep Austin Weird ...

“Keep Austin Weird” apparently the city’s by-line and a damn sight more inspiring than the usual “Cumbernauld – better than you might have expected” style catch-phrase towns in the UK are often lumbered with.
Yesterday we did our bit to live up to the challenge and it certainly paid dividends – if you want to promote your film here make friends and meet people I can’t recommend dressing up in a uniform highly enough!
We began yesterdays tour of town with the fantastic Darkon screening (hopefully more of which with more time) which we managed to squeeze into, sadly having to miss the very end to head out of town for a slightly surreal interview on the Austin Movie Show (hence the outfits).
Then it was back to town via Kinkos (unbelievably we seem to be the only people who could come to SXSW without thinking to bring a poster!) and into the plexi-glass SXSW studio at the convention centre. Here, we were interviewed by the totally delightful Lya who has been somewhat of a champion for our film, her relaxed style and sheer enthusiasm made the interview a breeze.
Thinking we’d pop straight out for a much needed drink then head back to change, we began the nights party trawl. Kindly chaperoned by the charming Michael Saleman (hot off the apparently sell out legal panel!) we then drifted on for the rest of the night from one party to the next ending up at the Austin Chronicle event, bemused and almost hoarse from the amount of shouting we’d been doing in response to an endless stream of what felt like genuine interest into what we’re doing here and why the hell we were still dressed up as “air hostesses”!
What’s amazing to me is that in the massive crowds here it is possible to meet the people who run the festival (I put faces to the whole crew I already knew from email yesterday) but also the people who’ve made the films you really want to see. On the N&K wish list we had Darkon, Summercamp! & Danielson: A Family movie … last night we managed to meet the team/directors of all of them … only Lifelike to go! As a bonus we also had an interesting chat to one of the directors of Cruel and Unusual, like many of the other Directors here about our age she works as part of a collaboration working together in a way that maybe undoes some of the pre-conceptions people might have of the lone auteur/director behind most movies.
Anyway we had a fantastic time last night talking not just about films, but Austin and US/UK culture. If this is Austin Weird … Bata-ville likes you this way.