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‘The Beaver,’ ‘Paul’ Among the World Premieres Set For SXSW

If you want to be one of the first people on the planet to see Mel Gibson with a puppet on his hand and a psychological block on his brain, you’ll want to head down to SXSW this year. In fact, you might want to be there anyway because 1) there are always some stellar movies 2) there’s a great gyro place right down the street and 3) we’ll be there.

The Beaver will get its world premiere there, as will Paul. Two highly anticipated movies that will have their first real audiences before seeing wide release later in the Spring.

The rest of the list (of films so far announced) includes a ghostly thriller from Ti West, Conan O’Brien’s ability to go all night long, and proof that John Melloncamp still exists. All of these films will join the ranks of the opening night movie – Source Code.

Check out the full list, taken directly from the press release:

The Beaver (World Premiere)
Director: Jodie Foster, Writer: Kyle Killen
Summit Entertainment and Participant Media Present in Association with Imagenation Abu Dhabi and Anonymous
Content – Two-time Academy Award® winner Jodie Foster directs and co-stars with two-time Academy Award®
winner Mel Gibson in an emotional story about a man on a journey to re-discover his family and re-start his life.
Plagued by his own demons, Walter Black was once a successful toy executive and family man who now suffers
from depression. No matter what he tries, Walter can’t seem to get himself back on track…until a beaver hand
puppet enters his life. Cast: Mel Gibson, Jodie Foster, Anton Yelchin & Jennifer Lawrence

Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop (World Premiere)
Director: Rodman Flender
After a much-publicized separation with his former employers, did Conan O’Brien hit the road on a 32-City tour to
connect with his fans or fill a void within himself? Filmmaker Rodman Flender followed O’Brien on his “Legally
Prohibited From Being Funny on Television Tour” and returned with an intimate portrait of an artist trained in
improvisation, captured at the most improvisational time of his career.

The Innkeepers (World Premiere)
Director and Writer: Ti West
Hotel clerks by day, amateur ghost hunters by night, the last two employees of the historic Yankee Pedlar Inn set
out to prove that their place of business is as haunted as its reputation. Cast: Sara Paxton, Pat Healy, Kelly
McGillis

It’s About You (World Premiere)
Directors: Kurt & Ian Markus
First-time filmmakers, photographer Kurt Markus and his son, Ian, document John Mellencamp’s summer 2009
tour across America, and the recording of his new album, No Better Than This. This is a raw and personal film,
celebrating the visual beauty and power of Super8 film and the human voice.

Paul (North American Premiere)
Director: Greg Mottola, Writers: Simon Pegg & Nick Frost
Simon Pegg and Nick Frost (Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead) reunite for Universal Pictures’ comedy-adventure Paul
as two sci-fi geeks whose pilgrimage takes them to America’s UFO heartland. While there, they accidentally meet
an alien named Paul (voiced by Seth Rogen) who brings them on an insane road trip that alters their universe
forever. Cast: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Jason Bateman, Kristen Wiig, Bill Hader, Blythe Danner, John Carroll
Lynch, with Sigourney Weaver and Seth Rogen as Paul.

Square Grouper (World Premiere)
Director: Billy Corben
A colorful portrait of Miami’s pot smuggling scene of the 1970s, populated with redneck pirates, a ganja-smoking
church, and the longest serving marijuana prisoner in American history.

It looks like a strong first list that shows the versatility of the festival quite nicely. From horror to docu-comedy to drama.

What movies are you looking forward to? Are you heading to SXSW this year?

A veteran of writing about movies for nearly a decade, Scott Beggs has been the Managing Editor of Film School Rejects since 2009. Despite speculation, he is not actually Walter Mathau's grandson. See? He can't even spell his name right.

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