South by Southwest began as a regional music festival in 1987, but as the 32nd edition opens in Austin this weekend, it has become a monster of entertechment — still a music festival, yes, but also a film festival (including, for its 25th incarnation, the world premiere of 1985, pictured, from out Texas-based director Yen Tan (Ciao, Pit Stop) and gay Texas-born producer Ash Christian (Hurricane Bianca, Mangus!)), an interactive festival, a tech/gaming conference, comedy fest and huge citywide party. I’ll be reporting from SXSW this year, which runs March 9–18. And there’s still time for you to take a trip down 35 and check out all the excitement. (the music festival doesn’t even start until Monday). If you do come, say hi.
— Arnold Wayne Jones
For passes and scheduling information, visit SXSW.com.