The season of planning for SXSW is on us at its most intense right now. For most of you, this event is still a couple of months away; here, we've been in it for a while and it's really getting dense. (SXSW World Headquarters is located just across the parking lot, volleyball court, and field from the Chronicle building.)
We spend the whole year planning for those 10 days in March, but the most accelerated time is now, the final months. The news often comes quickly, constantly changing all the time.
I hesitate to give news from either the Interactive or Music Conferences, although information from both should be available elsewhere. SXSW Film '98 has confirmed a Film Festival screening of Storefront Hitchcock, a film about Robyn Hitchcock directed by Jonathan Demme, with Demme and Hitchcock in attendance, as well as a rare Film Festival showing of Joel and Ethan Coen's soon-to-be-released The Big Lebowski. Check this publication and local media for more information about what should prove to be a super SXSW '98. Of special note is SXSW Interactive's website competition, which will honor the best websites in about 20 categories. The deadline has been extended to January 30; check http://www.sxsw.com for details and information on all three events.
After managing the inter- national opening of Jackie Brown and before going into rehearsals with Marisa Tomei for his Broadway debut in Wait Until Dark, Quentin Tarantino is stopping off in Austin to show some more movies from his own collection, and raise a little money for the Austin Film Society. There are still some passes available ($75 for the four-day, 16-film event). For information on passes, call the Austin Film Society at 322-0145.
There should be a limited number of single admissions available each night ($25 for Thursday, Friday, and Sunday; $40 for all night Saturday). There are several different lists floating around but the films should be pretty amazing and truly eccentric. Tarantino is learned and enthusiastic, and his theatrical introductions alone are worth the trip.