Austin Film Festival & Conference
Various Locations, October 24 – 31
By Holly Cowart
Photograph by Jack Plunkett
Eight days of films, four days of panels and one closing-night bash to remember — the Austin Film Festival is back. The annual citywide event began in 1993, drawing together screenwriters, filmmakers and movie buffs for a celebration of all things cinematic.
This year’s festival aims to impress with a strong slate of favorites and newcomers throughout its various panels, screenings and premieres. Of the more than 180 films featured, a few standouts have been announced, including acclaimed Austin-based writer-director Terrence Malick’s latest production, A Hidden Life. Already the recipient of gushing reviews from its Cannes Film Festival debut, the WWII-era film is sure to stun. Also, hitting screens for the first time is the documentary The Animal People, directed by Cassandra Suchan and Denis Henry Hennelly, with executive producer Joaquin Phoenix. Fifteen years in the making, this timely narrative discusses the dynamic between corporate influence in government policy, the impact of social media on protest campaigns and the unprecedented manipulation of legal freedoms to combat activism. As for this year’s conference, listen in on fascinating tales from the creators of Game of Thrones, the editor of The Simpsons and the head of creative development for Pixar Animation Studios, just to name a few.
The fest truly represents Austin’s unmatched creative energy, generating a connective space just as beneficial for industry members as it is moviegoers. Gain invaluable insights or simply kick back and grab some popcorn.