SXSW Adds Lions, Sleeping Beauty, Spike Jonze and Star Wars

Just in time, the folks at South by Southwest (SXSW) have released their final additions to this year’s festival. Taking place from March 12 – 20, 2010, the 2010 edition of the film festival will feature a wide range of films. It will open with Matthew Vaughn’s Kick-Ass. And as we know now, it will close with Chris Morris’ Four Lions, a highly acclaimed film from this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Also on the list of additions are Spike Jonze’s great short I’m Here, a tale of robot love; Elijah Drenner’s American Grindhouse, an exploration of American exploitation films; Waking Sleeping Beauty, the much talked about documentary about Disney animation’s golden years; and Star Wars: Retold, the short film version of the now famous girl who recounted the entire Star Wars saga without ever seeing the movies.

These and a few other potential gems join an already solid line-up, which we’ve been profiling as part of our SXSW 2010 preview. Check it out, and don’t forget to head over to and pick up a badge while you’re at it. You won’t want to miss this year’s fest.


Four Lions (United Kingdom)

Four Lions tells the story of a group of British jihadists who push their abstract dreams of glory to the breaking point. Cast: Riz Ahmed, Arsher Ali, Nigel Lindsay, Kayvan Novak, Adeel Akhtar. Director: Chris Morris. Screenwriters: Jesse Armstrong, Sam Bain, Simon Blackwell and Chris Morris.


American Grindhouse

This feature documentary chronicles the history of the American Exploitation Film. It digs deep into this often overlooked category of U.S. cinema and unearths the shameless and occasionally shocking origins of this popular entertainment. Director: Elijah Drenner. Screenwriters: Calum Wadell and Elijah Drenner (World Premiere)

Cargo (Switzerland)

Cargo is an intelligent science-fiction thriller that puts an electrifying, futuristic spin on present-day preoccupations like flight from reality, and destruction of the environment. Cast: Anna Katharina Schwabroth, Martin Rapold, Claude-Oliver Rudolph, Pierre Semmler. Directors: Ivan Engler and Ralf Etter. Screenwriters: Johnny Hartmann, Thilo Röscheisen, Patrik Steinmann (U.S. Premiere)

Haynesville: The Hunt for an Energy Future

Haynesville documents the discovery of the largest natural gas field in the nation, its momentous impact on three people’s lives, and the affect this historic find could have on our energy future. Director and Screenwriter: Gregory Kallenberg (North American Premiere)


A NY Thing

A French romantic follows his object of desire to New York where over the course of 3 crazed and ardent days he must convince her of the authenticity of his love in a comic and melancholy journey where love reveals its peculiar nature. Cast: Jonathan Zaccai, Fanny Valette, Greta Gerwig, Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Leo Fitzpatrick. Director & Screenwriter: Olivier Lecot (North American Premiere)



In the early 1980s, in small-town Texas, dramatic events force a 19-year-old skating rink manager to look at his life in a very new way. Cast: Shiloh Fernandez, Ashley Greene, Heath Freeman, Brett Cullen, Melinda McGraw, Taylor Handley, Haley Ramm, and A.J. Buckley. Director: Anthony Burns. Screenwriters: Anthony Burns, Brandon Freeman, Heath Freeman


Beyond Ipanema

From Carmen Miranda to Bebel Gilberto, from Tropicália to Favela Funk, Brazilian music has been influencing the world for 70 years. The global love affair with Brazil is revisited by the ones who lived it. Director: Guto Barra. Writer: Guto Barra and Béco Dranoff

Strummerville (United Kingdom)

Joe Strummer’s untimely death sent shockwaves around the music world and beyond. In this documentary, Grammy winner Don Letts shows how Joe’s spirit lives on through a charity set up in his memory, Strummerville. Director: Don Letts (World Premiere)

This Movie is Broken (Canada)

On a hot summer’s night in Toronto, a Broken Social Scene show tops all expectations and resonates deep into the morning, into the lives of two close friends & closer than they knew. Director: Bruce McDonald. Screenwriter: Don McKellar (World Premiere)

When You’re Strange – a film about the Doors

Narrated by Johnny Depp, the first feature documentary about The Doors provides a previously unseen view of the legendary quartet, comprised entirely of historic archival footage shot between 1965 and 1971. Director: Tom DiCillo


The Sound of Insects – Record of a Mummy (Switzerland)

A cinematic manifesto for life, challenged by the main character’s radical renunciation of life itself. Director: Peter Liechti


Waking Sleeping Beauty

From 1984 to 1994, a perfect storm of people and circumstances changed the face of animation forever. Director: Don Hahn


A week in the life of Tony, an alienated psychopath with severe social problems, an obsession for action films and a horrible moustache. Cast: Peter Ferdinando, Ricky Grover, George Russo, Francis Pope, Neil Maskell, Lorenzo Camporese, Vicky Murdock. Director and Screenwriter: Gerard Johnson


SUCK (Canada)

Suck is a rock and roll vampire movie that follows “The Winners” on their final doomed tour down a highway to hell. Cast: Rob Stefaniuk, Jessica Pare, Dave Foley, Moby, Iggy Pop, Henry Rollins, Dimitri Coats, Alex Lifeson with Alice Cooper and Malcolm McDowell. Director and Screenwriter: Rob Sterfaniuk (US. Premiere)

Additional Short Films in the 2010 SXSW Film Festival include:


I’m Here Director: Spike Jonze

Successful Alcoholics Director: Jordan Vogt-Roberts

Drake and Lindsay are successful alcoholics who may need to rethink their definition of “success.”

Tough Crowd Director: Anne Lewis

An over-scheduled, guilt-ridden and totally self-absorbed daughter comes to visit Mom at the retirement home and withers from the contempt that she’s certain the staff and other residents have for her. Plus, she “just knows” that they prefer her dashing, bachelor brother to her.


Robin Hood Gardens Director: Martin Ginestie

An investigation into the debate surrounding the fate of Robin Hood Gardens, controversial East London housing estate described as a dilapidated concrete eyesore by some and a masterpiece in Brutalist architecture by others.

Star Wars: Retold Director: Joe Nicolosi

An animated retelling of the original Star Wars trilogy, according to a girl who’s never actually watched Star Wars. Her rendition, pieced together from pop-culture references and Kevin Smith jokes, offers a fun glance at the cultural impact Star Wars has had on those who haven’t watched the films.

Neil Miller is the Founder and Publisher of Film School Rejects. For almost a decade, he has been talking movies on television, the radio, and the Internet. As of yet, no one has stopped him.

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