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SXSW closing with Billy Bob Thornton, adds “Bridesmaids” and Pee Wee Herman

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: The South by Southwest Film Conference and Festival announced that Billy Bob Thornton’s “The King of Luck,” a documentary about Willie Nelson, will be thus year’s Closing Night Film, screening on Saturday, March 19.

In addition, SXSW announced more features and shorts for the 2011 event, including a work-in-progress screening of Paul Feig’s “Bridesmaids,” starring (and co-written by) Kristen Wiig and produced by Judd Apatow; “Umshini Wam,” a short film from Harmony Korine featuring South African act Die Antwoord; and “Hit So Hard,” P. David Ebersole’s documentary on HOLE drummer Patty Schemel, among others.

HollywoodNews.com will be reporting from this year’s SXSW, which runs March 11-19, in Austin, Texas. For details on the complete film and conference lineup, visit www.sxsw.com/film.

Additional Films in the 2011 SXSW Film Festival include:

“The King of Luck”
Director: Billy Bob Thornton
This is a documentary about Willie Nelson: the man, the songwriter, the friend, the father, legendary performer and champion of the family farmer. (World Premiere)

“Bridesmaids” (Work In Progress)
Director: Paul Feig, Writers: Annie Mumolo & Kristen Wiig
Kristen Wiig leads the cast as Annie, a maid of honor whose life unravels as she leads her best friend, Lillian (Maya Rudolph), and a group of colorful bridesmaids (Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy, Wendi McLendon-Covey and Ellie Kemper) on a wild ride down the road to matrimony.

Films from R.E.M.’s Collapse Into Now followed by a Q+A with Michael Stipe
A selection of films from R.E.M.’s latest album, ”Collapse Into Now,” with films by notable artists and filmmakers and personally curated by Michael Stipe.

“Night Fishing”
Directors: PARKing CHANce (PARK Chan-wook, PARK Chan-kyong) (Narrative Short)
Story about the transitions between life and death brought by PARKing CHANce, the first collaboration between PARK Chan-wook and PARK Chan-kyong. (North American Premiere)

“The Pee-wee Herman Show on Broadway”
Director: Marty Callner, Created and Conceived by: Paul Reubens, Written by: Paul Reubens and Bill Steinkellner, Additional Material by: John Paragon, Also written by: Josh Meyers, John Koch and Paul Rust
Based on the original show that launched Pee-wee Herman into a pop culture icon, Paul Reubens’ beloved character brings his Playhouse to life once again in the HBO special “The Pee-wee Herman Show on Broadway.”

“Sound & Scene: Made in Israel”
SXSW Film and Wyatt Brand present a unique music/film/interactive convergence brunch, as two Israeli bands – Eatliz and Onili – play live to their stunning, award winning videos. GRAMMY®-nominated directors Yuval and Merov Nathan Skype in from Tel Aviv.

“Umshini Wam” (Narrative Short)
Director & Writer: Harmony Korine
Ninja and Yo Landi are wheelchair bound gangstas. Their wheels are falling off, and they need new rims. They must undergo extreme measures to keep rolling. (World Premiere)

The Devil’s Box
Director: Jason Hammond
Once a year, fiddlers across the country flock to Hallettsville to compete for the title of best Texas-style fiddler. The small town erupts into a musical jamboree in this offbeat and quirky portrait of Americana. (World Premiere)

Hit So Hard
Director: P. David Ebersole
The life and near-death story of Patty Schemel, the hard-hitting openly gay drummer of HOLE whose friendship with struggling musician Kurt Cobain unexpectedly led her to a path of fame, addiction, betrayal, survival and triumph. (World Premiere)

Tell Your Friends
Director: Victor Varnado
Featuring hot up-and coming comedians Reggie Watts, Kristen Schaal & Kurt Braunohler, Liam McEneaney, and Christian Finnegan, “Tell Your Friends! The Concert Film!” does for indie comedy what “Woodstock” did for Baby Boomer rock. (World Premiere)

Separado! (UK)
Directors: Gruff Rhys & Dylan Goch
Star Trek meets Buena Vista Social Club in this psychedelic western musical as Welsh pop legend Gruff Rhys (Super Furry Animals) takes us on a pan continental road trip in search of his long lost Patagonian uncle, the poncho wearing guitarist Rene Griffiths.

Tunnelvision (The Netherlands)
Director: Stefano Odoardi, Writer: Sytske Kok
When the body of a little baby is found in the dirt, the rubbish dump workers soon have reason to suspect that Mira knows more about it. Cast: Sanneke Bos, Serge Price, Raymond Thiry, Ergun Simsek, Teun Kuilboer (U.S. Premiere)

Up, Up, and Away
Director: Holden Osborne
What goes up when the lights come down? (World Premiere)

The Blitzen Trapper Massacre (Narrative Short)
Director: Rainn Wilson
Rainn Wilson directs and stars in The Blitzen Trapper Massacre, a new comedic short film designed to provoke terror into the hearts of any band that doesn’t the put the fans first.
(World Premiere)

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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