SXSW RUNDOWN: Most Anticipated Happenings in Austin


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South by Southwest is the little festival that could. It started 30 years ago as a way to showcase local music talent, and now it has grown into one of the biggest and most recognized festivals in the world. If you were to travel back in time, SXSW would be something completely different. According to the official website, the co-founders thought that if there was a huge festival in Austin, music execs would have a reason to come down and see the local talent. They thought one weekend dedicated to music and technology would be enough to put Austin on the map. Something tells me, they had no idea what SXSW would turn into. The first SXSW saw just 700 registrants, and only focused on local music and technology ― talk about humble beginnings. Today, SXSW boasts about 30,000 conference participants, and now includes international artist, film, TV, and interactive components. Now if you’re thinking that’s too much to fit into one weekend, you’re right. SXSW has gone from being only three days to ten. This year’s dates are broken down as follows: Interactive, March 11-15, Film, March 11-19, and Music March 15-20. So what is happening in Austin this year? Don’t worry, we have compiled all the most anticipated happenings from SXSW right here at 80’s Purple. Here is everything you need to know about this year’s SXSW. Most Anticipated Films Everybody Wants Some: Directed by Richard Linklater (Boyhood), this film is being described as the ”spiritual sequel” to Dazed and Confused. A movie about brotherly bonding, and young men trying to find themselves, it should be fun to watch. Everyone is excited to see how Linklater put his touch on what feels like a passion project. The film hits theaters in April. Everybody Wants Some Jean of the Joneses: Anticipated for the diversity alone, this film is getting a lot of attention. Directed by a female (Stella Meghie), and staring a cast made entirely of black women; Jean of the Joneses tells the story of a family that learns how to deal when their patriarch dies. Coming to a theater near you June 1. Midnight Special: What do you get when you put Michael Shannon, Kirsten Dunst, Joel Edgerton, and Adam Driver in the same movie? Cinematic gold (at least we hope). Directed by Jeff Nichols, Midnight Special sees Shannon playing a father on the run with his son from a cult of some sort. I’m on board. You can see this one in theaters March 18. Don’t Think Twice: A little comedy to break up the seriousness. Don’t Think Twice has an amazing comedic cast, including Gillian Jacobs, Keegan-Michael Key, Mike Birbiglia. Birbiglia also directs the film. The film is about an improv group struggling to make it, and what happens when one of the friends gets a big TV break everyone is jealous of. No theatrical release has been set. Don't Think Twice The Trust: Because everyone wants Nicholas Cage back, and what better way to get him back than with a police thriller about corrupt cops. Also staring Elijah Wood, and Sky Ferreira, this film should be good. No theatrical release date has been set. In a Valley of Violence: A bloody Western about a deadly man who's sworn off violence until his beloved dog is threatened. Sign me up. Directed by Ti West, and staring Ethan Hawke, John Travolta, James Ransone, Karen Gillan, Taissa Farmiga, this film has all the makings to be a hit. In A Valley of Violence Pee-wee’s Big Holiday: Because Pee-wee Herman, that’s all. Most Anticipated Music Anderson. Paak: R&B superstar in the making. He’s got the Dr. Dre stamp of approval. CHVRCHES: Electropop stars on the rise. With the release of their sophomore album, they are sure to put on a good show. Iggy Pop & Josh Homme: Who wouldn’t want to see two of the biggest forces in rock come together at SXSW. Lapsley: She is being described as a blend between Adele and FKA Twigs. Done. Day Wave: California surf-pop duo. Worth checking out. Formation: No, not the Beyoncé song, London funk at its best. Interactive Highlights President Barak Obama: According to the SXSW website, the POTUS will appear as part of a Keynote Conversation at SXSW Interactive, and the FLOTUS will be the Opening Keynote at SXSW Music. This marks the first time in the 30-year history of SXSW that a sitting President and the First Lady have participated in the event. Future of Entertainment Convergence: The only place you can see J.J Abrams, Kerry Washington, and Rami Malek all on one stage (unfortunately not together as they are talking about different topics). Future of Entertainmet What are you excited for at this year’s SXSW? Let us know in the comment section below.
Credits Words by Nailah Bakari Images courtesy of The Washington Post and SXSW