At the Austin premiere of the highly anticipated My Name Is Bruce, I had a drink and a friendly chat with b-movie megastar Bruce Campbell. It was a very last minute thing, and I wasn’t sure it was even going to happen until about ten seconds before it did, so the interview isn’t nearly as good as it could have been. But when you get a chance to talk to someone like Mr. Campbell, you take it. Thank you to Matt and Karen at the Alamo for making this happen on such short notice, and thank you to Ain’t It Cool News for calling in sick and freeing up an interview slot.
Two major events in the realm of online viewing: the first is today’s online premiere of Crawford, a locally produced documentary about the tiny Texas town that GWB chose to adopt as his “home” (Bush was born in Connecticut, and spent his formative years in Houston and Midland). The film was acquired by Austin-based B-Side Entertainment, and was released simultaneously on Hulu, iTunes and Amazon. I personally hate the Hulu player (it’s way too intrusive and distracting–but hey, it’s free), but Amazon’s unbox service is much less annoying, and hopefully B-Side will soon offer a paid download. B-Side’s service is great, and they offer mobile and DVD definition versions at (in my opinion) appropriate price points.
The other big news (yes, I’m two weeks behind on this one) is the online release of Michael Moore’s 2004 election doc Slacker Uprising. Moore is, unarguably, a popular filmmaker, and for him to buy back the North American rights for the flick from Harvey Weinstein just so he can give it away online is a pretty big deal. Read Luke Quinton’s fantastic piece on Slacker Uprising here.
- Get Your War On: Bailout?!
Get Your War On tackles the bailout plan.
- Role Models Q&A with David Wain and Paul Rudd
Here's a short chunk of a great Q&A with Wain and Rudd that happened after their screening of "Role Models" at Fantastic Fest. The movie, despite the incredibly awful trailer, is actually really funny. I'm just gonna come out and say that I love Paul Rudd.
- Austin Film Festival Schedule Online
The complete Austin Film Festival 08 lineup is now online. It's a strong lineup this year. We'll be doing a bunch of preview coverage on Austinist over the next couple weeks, so keep an eye out.
- Wayne Coyne To Present “Christmas On Mars” at the Alamo
Apparently, Wayne Coyne has directed a sci-fi flick. And he'll be hosting three screenings at the Alamo on Saturday October 11th.
Fantastic Fest is so close I can taste it. But since it’s completely sold out, I feel kinda bad for folks who didn’t get badges in time. For them I’ve put together a list of publicly-accessible FF screenings and events. Check it out on Austinist.
- Watch KLRU’s “Downtown” Online
You can watch the first three seasons of KLRU's fantastic series "Downtown" through the magic of the internet. Most of the segments are between 1 and 7 minutes, so it's fun to browse around.
- US Gets First Solar-Powered Cinema
VIA John Merriman at AFF
- Austinist’s “Must See Friday” ACL Picks
Some of the music writers have come up with five "sleeper picks" for the first day of ACL. Vote on your favorite and win a chance to watch the band from the stage with 3 of your friends. Neat.
- Austinist: Fantastic Fest Announces Free Online Screenings
I've seen a couple of these–I can totally recommend I Think We're Alone Now, though it dips into "way too creepy" territory once or twice.
I’m really digging Google’s new web browser,
Chrome. For pure web surfing, it’s a fantastic experience–the “most
visited sites” and “recent searches” on the default homepage are a
brilliant feature, load times are quick, and the viewport is incredibly
I can’t possibly use Chrome for development though; Firefox
lets me use all kinds of handy plugins that are now essential to my
workflow: Firebug, Web Developer Toolbar, Measureit, HTML Tidy and
Fireform are all major time savers, and I can’t imagine living without
them. But Chrome has zero add-ons at this point, and it’s not very customizable. I’ll probably still primarily be using Firefox for quite some time.
- Voiceover Master Don LaFontaine Dies at 68
Sad. I loved that guy. At my old job, a coworker actually called his agent to get a quote for some corporate voiceover work we needed done. He never called back though.
- The Onion Launches “Decider”, a Yelp-like Review Site
While it's in beta, the only city available is Chicago. Could be pretty good when they go country-wide though.
- The Movie Blog Uncut Goes Daily
The Movie Blog Uncut–probably the most enjoyable, fan-oriented movie podcast I've heard–has gone daily. They're perfect for listening to while you're working. And I'm not just saying that because the guys are Canadian.
- Stanley Kubrick’s Boxes Documentary on Google Video
A British documentary about Stanley Kubrick is now available in its entirety on Google Video.
- aGLIFF 2008
The Austin Gay and Lesbian International Film Festival kicks off next Wednesday. Austinist is presenting the opening night film, Otto, a gay zombie flick.
- AFS Essentials: Contemporary German Cinema
The Austin Film Society's Essentials Series will return on September 9th with a look at contemporary German Cinema.
- The Orwell Diaries… In Blog Form
Published each day, 70 years to the day after they were written.
- SXSW 09 Badges On Sale
Earlybird badges for SXSW 09 are now on sale. Don't quote me on this, but it looks like the cheapest/earliest rates have gone up about $50 per badge type. If you're gonna buy, now's the time.
Austin’s 3rd Annual FunFunFun Fest has a kickass lineup this year. It’s kind of a strange hodgepodge of punk, indie, dance and hip hop, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. The highlights for me include:
The National, Minus the Bear (even though each record is slightly less awesome, “Highly Refined Pirates” banks them a lot of cred in my book), St. Vincent (Member of Dallas’ The Polyphonic Spree whose solo record is great), Deerhoof, Dead Milkmen, Bad Brains, Clipse, Dan Deacon, Young Widows, Kool Keith and ALL.
I’m also really excited about the Rival Schools reunion, and the Walter Schreifels solo set. I’m a huge Quicksand fan, and Walter is still a kind of mythic figure to me.
Browsing the still-in-development HTML5 recommendation is fun.
My favorite addition is the “irrelevant” attribute (which I could wrap around some entire sites I’ve done in the past), but there are all kinds of interesting new gadgets, including a bunch of new dom events, sandboxable iframes, video and audio elements, a “draggable” attribute, a datagrid and more. It’s also worth noting that the “embed” element will now officially be part of the spec, making all kinds of invalid flash embedding suddenly okay.