Fest will screen 132 features, host 120 conference sessions
South by Southwest has added 15 films — including Sundance titles “Safety Not Guaranteed” and Mike Birbiglia’s “Sleepwalk With Me” — and locked down its 120-session conference lineup, highlighted by a conversation with Seth MacFarlane.SXSW, which finalized its schedule Wednesday, will open March 9 with the previously announced world premiere of Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard’s “The Cabin in the Woods.” The premiere of “21 Jump Street” will be the Centerpiece film. SXSW said the fest will host a total of 132 features, including 74 world premieres, 17 North American premieres and 11 U.S. premieres, with 58 films from first-time directors. A total of 138 shorts will screen as part of 12 overall shorts programs. SXSW announced that it’s launching the Digital Domain programming track, which examines how Web-based media and platforms are used to share content by creatives from a range of fields. It particularly concentrates on new approaches to storytelling. At his March 11 panel MacFarlane will discuss his recent foray into the music world with his debut album and his upcoming directorial debut “Ted,” a live-action/CG-animated comedy starring Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis. Other notable panels include “Funny or Die: Future of Comedy & Everything Else,” “Meat Is Might: Epic Meal Time Rules the Web,” “Restoring History: 100 Years of Universal Films” and “We Are Legion: Digital (R)Evolution,” with writer-director Brian Knappenberger. Films added included the world preems of Steve Taylor’s “Blue Like Jazz,” Todd Rohal’s “Nature Calls,” Andrew Neel’s “King Kelly,” Malik Benjelloul’s “Searching for Sugar Man” and “Shut Up and Play the Hits,” from directors Will Lovelace and Dyland Southern. SXSW will also screen a newly restored version of 1968’s “Yellow Submarine,” directed by George Dunning.