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Features Announced for SXSW Film Festival

February 3, 2011
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Hard to believe that it has been a almost a whole year since we covered SXSW Film Festival.  We’re heading back this year with a full team of writers to bring you all the reviews, interviews, and film news that we can fit in a day.  The 2011 SXSW Film Festival takes place in Austin, Texas from March 11-19. There will be a total of 130 films screened this year.

A few weeks ago, we learned that 13 Assassins, The Beaver, Conan O’Brien Can’t Stop, Paul, Source Code, Super, and Win Win would be headlining the festival.

Now, SXSW 2011 has announced its features lineup for this year, and it is looking quite promising. Features typically bring new talent to the forefront, with a heavy emphasis on first time filmmakers. There will be eight narrative features and eight documentary features eligible for Grand Jury competition.

Here are the newly announced narrative features:

96 MINUTES
Director & Writer: Aimée Lagos
Four young lives. One night. One terrifying event. These 96 minutes will change everything.
Cast: Brittany Snow, Evan Ross, Christian Serratos, J. Michael Trautmann, and David Oyelowo
(World Premiere)

A Year in Mooring
Director: Chris Eyre, Writer: Peter Vanderwall
In his first leading dramatic role, Josh Lucas walks an isolated line between solitude and redemption.  This quiet cinematic journey tells a of tale grief, solace and peace. Cast: Josh Lucas, Ayelet Zurer, James Cromwell, Jon Tenney, Taylor Nichols (World Premiere)

American Animal
Director & Writer: Matt D’Elia

Jimmy – eccentric, delusional, dying – feels betrayed when roommate James gets a job. During one night of drinks, drugs and women, a classic battle of wills ensues asJames prepares for work and Jimmy goes mad. Cast: Matt D’Elia, Brendan Fletcher, Mircea Monroe, Angela Sarafyan
(World Premiere)

Charlie Casanova (Ireland)
Director & Writer: Terry McMahon
A ruling class sociopath knocks down a working class girl in a hit-and-run and uses a deck of playing cards to determine his fate. Cast: Emmett J. Scanlan, Leigh Arnold, Damien Hannaway, Ruth McIntyre, Tony Murphy (World Premiere)

FLY AWAY
Director & Writer: Janet Grillo
A poignant yet humor filled story about a single mother of a teenager with autism, confronting her child’s future. What will sustain her daughter, and herself? A parent/child love story, when love means letting go.  Cast: Beth Broderick, Ashley Rickards, Greg Germann, JR Bourne, Reno (World Premiere)

HAPPY NEW YEAR
Director & Writer: K. Lorrel Manning
A war torn marine returns home to face his fiercest battle yet — the one against himself.
Cast: Michael Cuomo, JD Williams, Monique Gabriela Curnen, Tina Sloan, Alan Dale (World Premiere)

Natural Selection
Director & Writer: Robbie Pickering
When a dutiful, albeit barren, housewife discovers that her ailing husband has an illegitimate son, she sets out to find the young man and reunite him with her husband before he dies.
Cast: Rachael Harris, Matt O’Leary, Jon Gries, John Diehl (World Premiere)

Small, Beautifully Moving Parts
Directors & Writers: Annie J. Howell & Lisa Robinson
Technology-obsessed Sarah Sparks is pregnant and ambivalent, afraid she relates better to machines than to people. Looking for answers, she hits the road in search of her estranged mother, now living off the grid. Cast: Anna Margaret Hollyman, André Holland, Sarah Rafferty, Susan Kalechi Watson, Mary Beth Peil (World Premiere)

In the Documentary Feature category, the following eight have been announced:

A Mouthful
Director: Sally Rowe
Considered a rising star of haute cuisine, Paul Liebrandt found his career stalled in New York’s austere environment post 9/11. Paul struggles over the next decade as he tries to make his way back to the top. (World Premiere)

Better This World
Directors: Katie Galloway & Kelly Duane de la Vega
Two childhood friends from Midland, Texas cross a line that changes their lives forever. The result: eight homemade bombs, multiple domestic terrorism charges and a high stakes entrapment defense hinging on a controversial FBI informant. (World Premiere)

The City Dark
Director: Ian Cheney
The film chronicles the disappearance of darkness, following astronomers, cancer researchers, ecologists and philosophers in a quest to understand what is lost in the glare of city lights. (World Premiere)

DRAGONSLAYER
Director: Tristan Patterson
Killer Films presents the transmissions of a lost kid, falling in love, in the suburbs of Fullerton, California. Featuring skateboarding, the usual drugs, and stray glimpses of unusual beauty.
(World Premiere)

FIGHTVILLE
Directors: Michael Tucker & Petra Epperlein
A documentary about the art and sport of fighting: a microcosm of life, a physical manifestation of that other brutal contest called the American Dream. (World Premiere)

Kumaré (U.S.A/India)
Director: Vikram Gandhi
A documentary about a man who impersonates a wise Indian Guru and builds a following in Arizona. (World Premiere)

LAST DAYS HERE
Directors: Don Argott & Demian Fenton
The film follows middle-aged rocker Bobby Liebling, lead singer of the cult hard rock/heavy metal band Pentagram, as he leaves his parents’ basement in search of the life he never lived.
(World Premiere)

Where Soldiers Come From
Director: Heather Courtney
From a snowy small town in Northern Michigan to the mountains of Afghanistan and back, the film follows the four-year journey of childhood friends and their town, forever changed by a faraway war. (World Premiere)

To see the entire list of this year’s programming, visit the SXSW website, where you can find all the breaking news on the Film, Interactive, and Music Festivals.

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