South by Southwest® (SXSW®) Conference and Festivals (March 16-20, 2021) has announced the full program for the 28th edition of the SXSW Film Festival. Like so many other festivals in the past year, SXSW will be online. The online platform gives fans all over access to the most innovative and entertaining films of the year, along with exhibitions, mentoring, meet-ups, and special events unique to SXSW.

 

This years festival boasts 75 features including 57 World Premieres, 3 International Premieres, 4 North American Premieres, 1 U.S. Premieres, 8 Texas Premieres, and 53 films from first-time filmmakers. Along with numerous features, SXSW is set to host more than 84 Short Films including Music Videos, 5 Episodic Premieres, 6 Episodic Pilots, 20 Virtual Cinema projects, 14 Title Design entries, plus 30 Special Events.

 

With so much content, there is truly something for everyone! Check out just a small sampling of the horror-thriller-documentary-dark comedy offerings below!

 

 

HEADLINERS
This year’s Headliners: Opening and Closing Night Films and a Centerpiece Film with associated Special Events on our Live Channel.

Demi Lovato: Dancing with the Devil
Director: Michael D. Ratner, Producer: Marc Ambrose
Demi Lovato: Dancing with the Devil is a powerful YouTube Originals documentary event, exploring every aspect that led to Lovato’s nearly fatal overdose in 2018, and her awakenings in the aftermath. (World Premiere) (Opening Night Film)

NARRATIVE FEATURE COMPETITION
Eight world premieres, eight unique ways to celebrate the art of storytelling.

Here Before (United Kingdom)
Director/Screenwriter: Stacey Gregg, Producer: Sophie Vickers
After new neighbors move in next door, a bereaved mother begins to question her reality in this unsettling psychological thriller. Cast List: Andrea Riseborough, Martin McCann, Jonjo O’Neill, Eileen O’Higgins(World Premiere)

Our Father
Director/Screenwriter: Bradley Grant Smith, Producers: Alex Thompson, Ian Keiser, Steven Callas
In a last-ditch attempt to foster a meaningful bond, estranged sisters Beta and Zelda go in search of their mysterious Uncle Jerry. Cast List: Baize Buzan, Allison Torem, Austin Pendleton, Corey Hendrix, Tim Hopper, Ann Whitney, Keith Kupferer, Guy Massey, Lance Baker, D’Wayne Taylor(World Premiere)

Potato Dreams of America
Director/Screenwriter: Wes Hurley, Producers: Mischa Jakupcak, Wes Hurley
A true story about a gay boy growing up in the collapsing USSR, his courageous mail-order bride mother, and their adventurous escape to Seattle in the 90s. Cast List: Marya Sea Kaminski, Dan Lauria, Tyler Bocock, Lea DeLaria, Sera Barbieri, Hersh Powers, Jonathan Bennett, Sophia Mitri Schloss, Cynthia Lauren Tewes, James Grixoni (World Premiere)

The End Of Us
Directors/Screenwriters: Henry Loevner, Steven Kanter, Producers: Claudia Restrepo, Henry Loevner, Steven Kanter, Lovell Holder
After a savage breakup, two exes must continue living together when California issues its stay-at-home order for COVID-19. Now they’ll try to move on without moving out. Cast List: Ben Coleman, Ali Vingiano, Derrick DeBlasis, Gadiel Del Orbe, Kate Peterman, Colin Weatherby, Caroline Kwan, Will Neff, Jesse Benjamin, Claudia Restrepo(World Premiere)

DOCUMENTARY FEATURE COMPETITION
Eight world premieres: Eight real-world stories that demonstrate innovation, energy, and bold voices.

The Return: Life After ISIS (Spain, United Kingdom)
Director/Screenwriter: Alba Sotorra Clua, Producers: Alba Sotorra Clua, Vesna Cudic
Shamima Begum (UK) and Hoda Muthana (US) made it into worldwide headlines when they left their countries as teenagers to join ISIS. Now they want to return but their countries don’t want them back. (World Premiere)

United States vs. Reality Winner
Director: Sonia Kennebeck, Producer: Ines Hofmann Kanna
A state of secrets and a ruthless hunt for whistleblowers – this is the story of a 25-year-old Reality Winner who disclosed a document about Russian election interference to the media and became the number one leak target of the Trump administration. (World Premiere)

NARRATIVE SPOTLIGHT
High profile narrative features receiving their World, International, North American, U.S. or Texas premieres at SXSW.

The Drover’s Wife: the Legend of Molly Johnson (Australia)
Director/Screenwriter: Leah Purcell, Producers: Bain Stewart, David Jowsey, Angela Littlejohn, Greer Simpkin, Leah Purcell
The Drover’s Wife: The Legend of Molly Johnson is a reimagining of Leah Purcell’s acclaimed play and Henry Lawson’s classic short story. A searing Australian western thriller asking the question: how far do you go to protect your loved ones? Cast List: Leah Purcell, Rob Collins, Sam Reid, Jessica De Gouw, Malachi Dower-Roberts(World Premiere)

Paul Dood’s Deadly Lunch Break (United Kingdom)
Director: Nick Gillespie, Screenwriters: Brook Driver, Matt White, Nick Gillespie, Producer: Finn Bruce
When Paul’s chances of winning a national talent contest are ruined and his dreams of fame are slashed, he plans a deathly revenge rampage!! 1 lunch break, 5 spectacular murders! Each wrongdoer dispatched in a fitting manner by the sparkly suited Paul! Cast List: Tom Meeten, Katherine Parkinson, Kris Marshall, Alice Lowe, Mandeep Dhillon, Johnny Vegas, Steve Oram, Craig Parkinson, Kevin Bishop, Pippa Haywood(World Premiere)

Swan Song
Director/Screenwriter: Todd Stephens, Producers: Todd Stephens, Eric Eisenbrey, Tim Kaltenecker, Stephen Israel
An aging hairdresser (Udo Kier) escapes his nursing home and embarks on an odyssey across his small town to style a dead woman’s hair for her funeral, rediscovering his sparkle along the way. Cast List: Udo Kier, Jennifer Coolidge, Linda Evans, Michael Urie, Ira Hawkins, Stephanie McVay (World Premiere)

DOCUMENTARY SPOTLIGHT
Shining a light on new documentary features receiving their World, International, North American or U.S. premieres at SXSW.

Alien On Stage (United Kingdom)
Directors/Producers: Danielle Kummer, Lucy Harvey
British Bus driver’s amateur stage show of Ridley Scott’s Alien, accidentally makes it to a famous London theatre! With awkward acting and special effects requiring more luck than judgment, will their homemade homage be alright on the night? (International Premiere)

The Lost Sons
Director: Ursula Macfarlane, Producer: Gagan Rehill
1960s Chicago, a baby is kidnapped from a hospital. Fifteen months later, a toddler is abandoned. Could he be the same baby? In a tale of breathtaking twists and turns, two mysteries begin to unravel and dark family secrets are revealed. (World Premiere)

When Claude Got Shot
Director: Brad Lichtenstein, Producer: Steven Cantor, Brad Lichtenstein, Jamie Schutz, Santana Wilson (co-producer)
Three strangers’ lives become inextricably entwined by a weekend of gun violence. (World Premiere)

MIDNIGHTERS
Scary, funny, sexy, controversial – eight provocative after-dark features for night owls and the terminally curious.

Broadcast Signal Intrusion
Director: Jacob Gentry, Screenwriters: Phil Drinkwater, Tim Woodall, Producers: Greg Newman, Brett Hays, Giles Edwards, Nicola Goelzhaeuser
In the late 90s, a video archivist unearths a series of sinister pirate broadcasts and becomes obsessed with uncovering the dark conspiracy behind them. Cast List: Harry Shum Jr., Kelley Mack, Chris Sullivan, Jennifer Jelsema, Arif Yampolsky, Justin Welborn, Michael B. Woods, Steve Pringle (World Premiere)

The Feast (United Kingdom)
Director: Lee-Haven Jones, Screenwriter/Producer: Roger Williams
Over an evening a wealthy family gathers for a sumptuous dinner with guests in their ostentatious house in the Welsh mountains. Served by a mysteriously disturbing young woman, the assembled party do not realize they are about to eat their last supper. Cast List: Anne Elwy, Nia Roberts, Julian Lewis Jones, Steffan Cennydd, Sion Alun Davies, Lisa Palfrey, Rhodri Meilir (World Premiere)

Gaia (South Africa)
Director: Jaco Bouwer, Screenwriter: Tertius Kapp, Producer: Tertius Kapp, Jorrie van der Walt, Jaco Bouwer
In the depths of an ancient forest, something has been growing. Something older than humanity itself, and perhaps greater too. When a park ranger discovers a man and his son living wild, she stumbles onto a secret that is about to change the world. Cast List: Monique Rockman, Carel Nel, Alex van Dyk, Anthony Oseyemi (World Premiere)

Jakob’s Wife
Director: Travis Stevens, Screenwriters: Travis Stevens, Kathy Charles, Mark Steensland, Producers: Barbara Crampton, Bob Portal, Travis Stevens, Inderpal Singh
The disappearance of a young woman threatens to change the beige and banal lives of Anne Fedder (Barbara Crampton) and her pastor husband Jakob Fedder (Larry Fessenden) forever. Cast List: Barbara Crampton, Larry Fessenden, Bonnie Aarons, Mark Kelly, Sarah Lind, Robert Rusler, Nyisha Bell, Phil Brooks(World Premiere)

Offseason
Director/Screenwriter: Mickey Keating, Producer: Eric B. Fleischman, Maurice Fadida
After receiving a mysterious letter, a woman travels to a desolate island town and soon becomes trapped in a nightmare. Cast List: Joe Swanberg, Jocelin Donahue, Melora Walters, Richard Brake, Jeremy Gardner (World Premiere)

Sound Of Violence (Finland, United States)
Director/Screenwriter: Alex Noyer, Producer: Hannu Aukia, Alex Noyer
A young girl recovers her hearing and gains synesthetic abilities during the brutal murder of her family. Finding solace in the sounds of bodily harm, as an adult, she pursues a career in music composing her masterpiece through gruesome murders. Cast List: Jasmin Savoy Brown, Lili Simmons, James Jagger, Tessa Munro(World Premiere)

The Spine of Night
Directors/Screenwriters: Philip Gelatt, Morgan Galen King, Producers: Will Battersby, Philip Gelatt, Jean Rattle
In this ultra-violent, fantasy epic, ancient dark magic falls into sinister hands and unleashes ages of suffering onto mankind. A group of heroes from different eras and cultures must band together in order to defeat it at all costs. Cast List: Richard E. Grant, Lucy Lawless, Patton Oswalt, Betty Gabriel, Joe Manganiello, Larry Fessenden, Nina Lisandrello, Abby Savage, Tom Lipinski, Patrick Breen (World Premiere)

Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched: A History of Folk Horror
Director/Screenwriter: Kier-La Janisse, Producers: Kier-La Janisse, David Gregory, Winnie Cheung
Woodlands Dark Days and Days Bewitched is the first feature-length documentary on the history of folk horror, from the 1960s to today. (World Premiere)

FESTIVAL FAVORITES
Acclaimed standouts and selected premieres from festivals around the world.

How It Ends
Directors/Screenwriters/Producers: Daryl Wein, Zoe Lister-Jones
On the last day on Earth, one woman goes on a journey through LA to make it to her last party before the world ends, running into an eclectic cast of characters along the way. Cast List: Zoe Lister-Jones, Cailee Spaeny, Nick Kroll, Olivia Wilde, Helen Hunt, Lamorne Morris, Fred Armisen, Bradley Whitford, Charlie Day, Whitney Cummings

Violation (Canada)
Directors/Screenwriters/Producers: Madeleine Sims-Fewer, Dusty Mancinelli
A troubled woman on the edge of divorce returns home to her younger sister after years apart. But when her sister and brother-in-law betray her trust, she embarks on a vicious crusade of revenge. Cast List: Madeleine Sims-Fewer, Anna Maguire, Jesse LaVercombe, Obi Abili, Jasmin Geljo, Cynthia Ashperger (Texas Premiere)

VISIONS
Visions filmmakers are audacious, risk-taking artists in the new cinema landscape who demonstrate raw innovation and creativity in documentary and narrative filmmaking.

Through the Plexi-Glass: The Last Days of the San Jose
Director: Liz Lambert, Producers: Liz Lambert, Tina Gazzerro Clapp, Ariel Quintans
The documentary tells the story of a real estate deal’s unexpected detour — one that sparked the gentrification of Austin’s hippest neighborhood — and reveals layers of knotty, unanswerable questions, all more relevant than ever today. (World Premiere)

Twyla Moves
Director: Steven Cantor, Producers: Steven Cantor, Jamie Schutz
Interwoven with her storied career and prolific works, Twyla Moves sees legendary choreographer Twyla Tharp navigate her latest creative challenge: making a dance for a world plagued by the Covid-19 pandemic. (World Premiere)

24 BEATS PER SECOND
Showcasing the sounds, culture and influence of music and musicians, with an emphasis on documentary.

Luchadoras (Germany/Mexico)
Directors: Paola Calvo, Patrick Jasim, Screenwriters: Patrick Jasim, Paola Calvo, Phillip Kaminiak, Producer: Phillip Kaminiak
Luchadoras portrays the courageous female wrestlers of Ciudad Juárez, a city known for its high murder rate against women – who in the ring and in their daily lives fight to redefine the image of what it means to be a woman in Mexico. (World Premiere)

Trapped (Egypt)
Director: Manal Khaled, Screenwriters: Manal Khaled, Rasha Azab, Producer: Manal Khaled
Trapped revolves around a number of women from different walks of life whose destinies are tied together; being all under one siege. As the events unfold, their own personal stories reflect on a far bigger siege that depicts the shackles imposed by a patriarchal society. Cast List: Coroline Khalil, Reem Hegab, Osama Abo El Ata, Ne’ma Mohsen, Mona Mokhtar, Sara’a Jebel (World Premiere)

2020 SPOTLIGHT
Exciting Narrative, Documentary, and Episodic projects from across our sections from the 2020 edition of the SXSW Film Festival.

Executive Order (Brazil)
Director: Lázaro Ramos, Screenwriters: Lusa Silvestre, Lázaro Ramos, Aldri Anunciação, Elísio Lopes Jr, Producers: Daniel Filho, Tania Rocha
In a dystopian near-future in Brazil, an authoritarian government orders all citizens of African descent to move to Africa – creating chaos, protests, and an underground resistance movement that inspires the nation. Cast List: Alfred Enoch, Taís Araújo, Seu Jorge, Adriana Esteves, Renata Sorrah, Mariana Xavier, Pablo Sanábio (Texas Premiere)

Violet
Director/Screenwriter: Justine Bateman, Producers: Justine Bateman, Michael D. Jones, Larry Hummel, Matt Paul
A film development executive realizes that the “guiding voice” inside her head has been lying to her about everything. Cast List: Olivia Munn, Luke Bracey, Justin Theroux (World Premiere)

Witch Hunt
Director/Screenwriter: Elle Callahan, Producers: Eric B. Fleischman, Maurice Fadida
In a modern America where witches are real and witchcraft is illegal, a sheltered teenager must face her own demons and prejudices as she helps two young witches avoid law enforcement and cross the southern border to asylum in Mexico. Cast List: Gideon Adlon, Elizabeth Mitchell, Abigail Cowen, Nicholas and Cameron Crovetti, Christian Camargo (World Premiere)

 

EPISODIC PROGRAM

EPISODIC PREMIERES
Presenting world premieres of prestige serials slated for release.

Confronting A Serial Killer
Showrunner: Po Kutchins, Director: Joe Berlinger, Producers: Eve Rodrick, Eleanor Yu, Cassandra Corbett, Janine Nask, Julia Pontecorvo, Lesley Grossman, Emma McNamara, Ariel Kay
Confronting a Serial Killer tells the story of the unprecedented relationship between author Jillian Lauren and serial killer Sam Little while investigating the devastating impact of bias against marginalized women in the criminal justice system. (World Premiere)

 

Cruel Summer
Showrunner: Tia Napolitano, Director: Max Winkler
From Exec Producer Jessica Biel, Freeform’s Cruel Summer is a psychological thriller taking place over three summers when a popular girl goes missing and an awkward outlier transforms to the queen bee and eventually, the most despised person in America. Cast List: Olivia Holt, Chiara Aurelia, Michael Landes, Froy Gutierrez, Harley Quinn Smith, Allius Barnes, Blake Lee, Brooklyn Sudano (World Premiere)

 

Made for Love
Showrunner: Christina Lee, Director: Stephanie Laing, Screenwriters: Written for Television by Alissa Nutting & Dean Bakopoulos and Patrick Somerville and Christina Lee
Based on Alissa Nutting’s tragicomic novel, Made for Love is a dark, absurd, and cynically poignant story of divorce and revenge following Hazel Green (Cristin Milioti), a thirty-something woman on the run after 10 years in a suffocating marriage. Cast List: Cristin Milioti, Billy Magnussen, Dan Bakkedahl, Noma Dumezweni, Augusto Aguilera, Caleb Foote and Ray Romano. Executive producers: Christina Lee, Alissa Nutting, Patrick Somerville, Dean Bakopoulos, Liza Chasin, SJ Clarkson.(World Premiere)

 

Sasquatch
Showrunner/Director: Joshua Rofé, Producers: Duplass Brothers Productions, Number 19
Sasquatch is a true crime doc series following investigative journalist David Holthouse as he attempts to solve a bizarre twenty-five-year-old triple homicide that was said to be the work of a mythical creature. (World Premiere)

 

Them
Showrunner: Little Marvin
Set in 1953, Them, a co-production from Amazon Studios and Sony Pictures Television, centers on a Black family who moves from North Carolina to an all-white Los Angeles neighborhood. The family’s idyllic home becomes ground zero where malevolent forces, next door and otherworldly, threaten to taunt, ravage & destroy them. Cast List: Deborah Ayorinde, Ashley Thomas, Alison Pill, Melody Hurd, Shahadi Wright Joseph (World Premiere)

 

EPISODIC PILOT COMPETITION
A pilot showcase introducing fresh work from bright new talent, many with an eye towards finding

 

Dale’s House
Showrunner: Julie Lake, Director: Kat Whalen, Screenwriters: Matt Kirsch, Julie Lake, Producers: Matt Kirsch, Julie Lake, Dana Fares
Dale’s House is a horror-comedy about two estranged best friends, both at rock bottom in their careers and personal lives, who end up house sitting together in a demonic house that grants them all the success they desire, in exchange for their souls. Cast List: Julie Lake, Matt Kirsch, Sandy McCree, Jeff Cahn (World Premiere)

 

SPECIAL EVENTS
Special Events for 2021 consist of conversations associated with projects in the 2021 Film Festival, table readings, and other unique one-off events on our Live Channel 4.

 

Opening Night Special Event: YouTube Originals Docuseries Demi Lovato: Dancing with the Devil Special Event Q&A
Global superstar Demi Lovato, Director and Executive Producer Michael D. Ratner, YouTube’s Global Head of Original Content Susanne Daniels and moderator Jenelle Riley from Variety discuss the new documentary event exploring the traumas and every aspect that led to Lovato’s nearly fatal overdose in 2018, followed by her powerful awakenings in the aftermath.

 

Closing Night Film Special Event: Live Q&A with Charli XCX, a SICK moderator, and directors Bradley & Pablo
Live Q&A Followed by a virtual rave dance party which will consist of:
-A pre-recorded DJ set from Charli, shot in a big empty warehouse space with minimal, dark rave-y lighting. A true pandemic rave shot as a live performance.
-Different performers will be spotlighted on Zoom dancing to the set: Poison Oakland + other drag performers + fans featured in the film + lucky attendees!

 

7 Sounds
Filmmaker Sam Green and musician JD Samson ask you to step away from your computer and focus on the experience of listening in the present moment. 7 Sounds is an immersive, live-streamed audio-video work that explores the universal influence of sound. The piece weaves seven specific audio recordings into a meditation on the power of sound to bend time, cross borders, and profoundly shape our perception—opening new ways to hear our everyday world.

 

Confronting a Serial Killer Conversation
Discussion with the team behind Confronting a Serial Killer: director/EP Joe Berlinger, EP/showrunner Po Kutchins and Jillian Lauren. Premiering on STARZ this Spring, the five-episode series that tells the timely story of the unprecedented relationship between acclaimed author and journalist Jillian Lauren and the most prolific serial killer in American history, Sam Little, and her race against time to identify his victims before it’s too late.

 

Jada Pinkett Smith in Conversation with the Creator, Executive Producers, and Cast of the new Amazon Prime Video Terror Anthology, Them
Them creator and executive producer Little Marvin and executive producer Lena Waithe, will join cast, Deborah Ayorinde, Ashley Thomas, Alison Pill, Melody Hurd, and Shahadi Wright Joseph in a discussion moderated by Jada Pinkett Smith (Actress, Red Table Talk Host). In this candid conversation, executive producers and cast will unpack the first episode, set to World Premiere during this year’s SXSW Film Festival, as well as themes explored across the series. Them is a co-production from Amazon Studios and Sony Pictures Television.

 

Cruel Summer Q&A
From Executive Producer Jessica Biel (The Sinner), Cruel Summer is a psychological thriller that follows two young women; Kate Wallis, the popular girl with a charmed life who one day goes missing, and Jeanette Turner, the nerdy wannabee who is accused of being connected to Kate’s disappearance. Please join us for an exciting panel with series stars Olivia Holt, Chiara Aurelia, and executive producers Tia Napolitano, Jessica Biel and Michelle Purple. The panel will be moderated by Jessica Radloff from Glamour Magazine.

 

A Q&A with Kier-La Janisse of Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched
Join programmer Liane Cunje in conversation with Woodlands Dark and Days Bewitched director Kier-La Janisse as they discuss the process behind the film – from its genesis as a short featurette to a comprehensive look at the folk horror phenomenon in film and television worldwide that became the House of Psychotic Women author’s first feature as a writer, director and producer. They’ll discuss the myriad definitions and taxonomies of folk horror, its touchstone films and most vocal champions, and the many challenges of finishing a documentary in the midst of a global pandemic.

 

Scoring my first Feature Film, a conversation with Finneas O’Connell
Join internationally acclaimed, multi GRAMMY-Award-winning artist and producer Finneas O’Connell and Variety contributor (Songs for Screens) Andrew Hampp for an exclusive and live discussion at SXSW, as O’Connell delves into the process and his experience when making his feature film-score debut; composing and performing for The Fallout, a powerful new film about the unseen faces of a tragedy.

 

Til Death Do Us Part: A Jakob’s Wife Discussion
Moderator Jordan Crucchiola leads an intimate conversation with genre legends Barbara Crampton, Larry Fessenden and writer/director Travis Stevens about reinventing yourself later in life, finding your own voice as an artist and how to have a happy marriage in a horror film.

 

Weed, Murder & Bigfoot: A Conversation with the Team Behind Hulu’s Sasquatch
While visiting a pot farm in Northern California in 1993, investigative journalist David Holthouse heard a story that still haunts him: On a nearby farm three men were torn limb from limb in a savage Bigfoot attack. Hulu’s Sasquatch follows David as he revisits the Redwoods in search of any evidence that might lead to the truth of what happened that night. Join David Holthouse, director Joshua Rofé and executive producer Mark Duplass as they break down the production of this wild murder mystery.

SHORTS PROGRAM

NARRATIVE SHORTS COMPETITION
A selection of original, well-crafted films that take advantage of the short form and exemplify distinctive and genuine storytelling.

 

Are You Still There?
Directors/Screenwriters: Rayka Zehtabchi, Sam Davis
Safa’s been through a lot. Now her car battery’s dead in a strip mall parking lot. (North American Premiere)

 

The Criminals (Romania, Turkey)
Director/Screenwriter: Serhat Karaaslan
Late at night in a small Turkish town, a young couple tries to find a hotel room to spend the night together.

 

Femme (United Kingdom)
Directors/Screenwriters: Ng Choon Ping, Sam H. Freeman
When Jordan gets into the car of a flirtatious drug-dealer, his night takes a dangerous turn. (World Premiere)

 

The Other Morgan
Director/Screenwriter: Alison Rich
When a dopey young exterminator discovers there’s another version of her out in the world, she begins to question her life choices. (Texas Premiere)

 

Sales Per Hour
Directors: Michelle Uranowitz, Daniel Jaffe, Screenwriter: Michelle Uranowitz
A young woman faces a moral dilemma when she witnesses a sexual encounter in a dressing room at the clothing store where she works. (World Premiere)

 

Sisters
Director/Screenwriter: Jess Brunetto
Hidden secrets cause tension when two estranged sisters are forced to confront each other while preparing for their ailing mother’s death. (World Premiere)

 

DOCUMENTARY SHORTS COMPETITION
Slices of life from across the documentary spectrum.

The Box
Directors/Screenwriters: James Burns, Shal Ngo
The Box is a hybrid documentary that explores the effects of solitary confinement through three people’s harrowing true stories – they’ve spent a combined nine years in isolation, and one of them co-directed this film. (World Premiere)

 

Red Taxi
Director: Anonymous
As protests unfold in Hong Kong, Red Taxi shows a city in upheaval through the eyes of those who must traverse the streets day and night to make a living. Filmed by a local film crew, who remain anonymous due to ongoing safety concerns. (North American Premiere)

 

ANIMATED SHORTS COMPETITION
An assortment of stories told using traditional animation, computer-generated effects, stop-motion, and everything in between.

 

The Expected (Sweden)
Director/Screenwriter: Carolina Sandvik
A father-to-be ends up in a feverish nightmare after a miscarriage when a strange entity seems to be growing in the mother’s blood. (North American Premiere)

 

Our Bed Is Green
Director/Screenwriter: Maggie Brennan
A young woman seeks digital refuge from an overwhelming world and a bewildering obsession. (World Premiere)

 

Rendang of Death (Indonesia)
Director: Percolate Galactic, Screenwriters: Ryan Jackson, Indraswari Pangestu, Skolastika Lupitawina
In a quaint Padang restaurant, filled with people enjoying their lunch break, two bros put their friendship to the test when it turns out that there’s only a single plate of their favorite food left: the Rendang of Death.

 

MIDNIGHT SHORTS
Bite-sized bits for all of your sex, gore, and hilarity cravings.

Don’t Peek
Director/Screenwriter: Julian Terry
While playing a videogame, a young woman comes across a creepy character who wants to be let out.

 

Flick
Director/Screenwriter: Ariel Zengotita
A reclusive college student is driven mad after picking a booger he can’t flick away.

 

Joanne Is Dead
Director/Screenwriter: Brian Sacca
It’s easy to dismiss the ramblings of the dementia-riddled elderly as nonsense. But what if there is a deadly truth behind those words? (World Premiere)

 

The Moogai (Australia)
Director/Screenwriter: Jon Bell
An Aboriginal psychological horror, The Moogai is the story of a family terrorized by a child-stealing spirit. (International Premiere)

 

A Puff Before Dying
Directors/Screenwriters: Michael Reich, Mike Pinkney
A wild night of drugs and impaired driving ends in tragedy for three teenage girls that happen to be marionettes. (World Premiere)

 

Puss
Director/Screenwriter: Leah Shore
Samantha desperately wants to get laid, but is finding it to be difficult for some reason. (World Premiere)

 

Reklaw
Director/Screenwriter: Polaris Banks
A team of altruistic vigilantes destroys evidence to keep as many people from prison as possible, but when one of their crime scene clean-ups is revisited by the killer, the strength of their convictions is tested. (World Premiere)

 

Run That Shit!
Director: Tristan Kim, Screenwriters: Tristan Kim, Will Allyn Robinson
A Satanic cult lures a no-name rapper into stealing an enchanted chamber pot from his estranged friend and now superstar rapper, Big Tobacco. (Texas Premiere)

 

Significant Other
Director/Screenwriter: Quinn George
A couple struggles to see eye to eye when a mysterious red orb appears in their new home. (Texas Premiere)

 

Stuffed (United Kingdom)
Director: Theo Rhys, Screenwriters: Theo Rhys, Joss Holden-Rea
Stuffed is a short musical about a taxidermist who dreams of stuffing a human and the man she meets online, so afraid of aging he volunteers to be her specimen. An unexpected romantic spark between them complicates their plans. (North American Premiere)

 

A Tale Best Forgotten (Sweden)
Director/Screenwriter: Tomas Stark
In a house by a river that lamented as it ran, lived a father, and his daughter, and the dog-headed man… A murder ballad. (North American Premiere)

 

The Thing That Ate The Birds (United Kingdom)
Directors/Screenwriters: Sophie Mair, Dan Gitsham
On the North Yorkshire Moors, Abel, Head Gamekeeper, discovers the thing that is eating his grouse. (North American Premiere)

 

VIRTUAL CINEMA 

Virtual Cinema Competition
World and International Premieres of exciting immersive work.

Biolum (France, United Kingdom)
Director: Abel Kohen, Screenwriter: Jon Rowe, Producers: Igal Kohen, Katharina Weser, Paul Kirsten
Biolum is an interactive, narrative VR sci-fi experience that immerses you in the mysterious beauty of deep-sea life on a dive that takes a shocking turn for the worse. (World Premiere)

 

Poison (Republic of Korea)
Directors: Meesol Yi, Cooper Sanghyun Yoo, Screenwriter: Hyunsoo So, Producer: Wooyeol Jeon
Through Poison, an immersive VR experience, users are expected to feel the intelligence of the virus and its danger intuitively. Our primary goal is to let the people be alert, be aware of our enemies, and think about what we can do for our lives. (World Premiere)

 

A Promise Kept
Directors: Ken Winikur, Ariel Efron, Screenwriters: Susan Abrams, Ariel Efron, Kelley Szany, Ken Winikur, Producers: Susan Abrams, Kelley Szany
This gripping virtual reality experience takes you on a journey back to the notorious Auschwitz killing center with Holocaust Survivor, Fritzie Fritzshall as she fulfills her promise to the 599 women who helped save her life. (World Premiere)

 

 

SXSW Online has opened its doors so registrants can begin networking. For the full line-up, and for more information on tickets and all other special events SXSW 2021 has to offer, visit their website.

About the Author: Lindsey Ungerman