It’s not just weather separating film festivals Sundance and South by Southwest (SXSW). With the Austin, TX entertainment convention announcing its 2023 lineup, it’s clear SXSW is focusing on the 18-34 target market with the Chris Pine-headlined Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves opening the festival on March 10, just a few weeks before it will hit theaters at the end of the month. SXSW will run in downtown Austin, TX March 10-19.
Like last year, SXSW will be live again with premieres, tons of panels and talks, a vibrant music scene (one of the biggest draws of the energetic festival), and even a Spotify playlist to compliment your festival experience. Unlike Sundance, SXSW does not offer any of its content online. If you want to partake in all the fun, you have to show up in person! Additionally, to make abundantly clear how they focus on a younger movie-going audience, SXSW also offers a student discount as well, including for those in high school (a very cool move, IMO).
The Zombies are among the musical artists headlining the event. But there are so many other musical artists. I mean, look at the extent of musicians performing at the festival. How impressive is that?
Among the most anticipated titles being unveiled in TX include Problemista, produced by Emma Stone and starring the uber-talented Tilda Swinton. Another project that has us hyped up is Eva Longoria behind the lens, directing Flamin’ Hot centering around the Mexican-American janitor, Richard Montañez, who transformed the snack industry with his concept for Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. I’m glad to see another project directed by Longoria, who has successfully transitioned into a directing career, proving she has the chops behind the camera as well, like her excellent documentary, La Guerra Civil, which debuted at the 2022 Sundance Festival.
Other highlights of this year’s fest include the next chapter in the Sam Raimi horror franchise, Evil Dead Rise. The directorial debut of New Girl’s Jake Johnson, Self Reliance, will feature a bunch of big names including Anna Kendrick, Andy Samberg, Emily Hampshire, Natalie Morales, Wayne Brady, and Christopher Lloyd. STARZ is also bringing the second season of Blindspotting. Other buzzy titles include Nicholas Cage in another parody, The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent, (I mean when are Cage and satire never a good combo?) and another horror film, Bodies Bodies Bodies from the production company A24.
The speakers’ list is an intriguing one, as usual, with one of the panels being headlined by Walt Disney World Park’s chairman, Josh D’Amaro, who will no doubt address how the entertainment giant is tackling its recent shakeup and leadership restructuring.
Check out the full lineup of titles here.
But probably my favorite inclusion is a documentary on the creation of the infamous Star Wars holiday special, which Carrie Fisher used to famously play to get folks to leave her parties if they overstayed their welcome. This is the kind of content I’m here for!
Here’s a breakdown of the artists appearing at SXSW.
Check back here for continuous updates on the entertainment convention and featured titles, which we’ll be profiling.