Tuesday, March 16, 2010

SXSW Update: Mostly Film Marketing

Good morning from SXSW! I’ve got just over a full day left at the fest, and I’m starting it with screenings of two IFP films in competition – Miao Wang’s Beijing Taxi and Cameron Yates’ The Canal Street Madam. Both have had outstanding marketing schemes at the fest. At the Beijing Taxi party – Beijinger 80s-style punkrock bands playing in a Mexican bar – Miao (with her parents as assistant marketers) sold t-shirts and one-of-a-kind flipbooks showing scenes from the film. The Canal Street Madam branded condoms, including their screening times, were a huge hit at all the parties. Looking forward to seeing both films at the Alamo Lamar today. I am in love with that theater chain (thou I am certainly not their only suitor) – there’s nothing quite like being served pizza, beer, and a chocolate peanut butter milkshake during a film.

SXSW has have commissioned a series of 30-second intro reels, magical realism hazards of filmmaking, from filmmaker David Lowery (his St. Nick is a Narrative Lab alum and premiered at SXSW 09). SXSW's originality has made the filmmakers here step up their game. Life 2.0 had a Q&A via Second Life, the Happy Poet team parked the vegetarian food cart that is the center of the film in front of the theater (I'm pressing them to put recipes on their website), and to my glee, everyone seems to have clever 1/2" buttons with images from their films.

Yesterday I was a Programmer in one of SXSW’s Mentor Sessions. I’ve only ever been on the producing side of this event, so it was fun to have my own speed dating table and meet new filmmakers working on great projects.

The SXSW jury awards presentation is tonight - fingers crossed for our films in competition!

-Rose Vincelli, IFP Program Manager

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