SXSW in 60 Seconds

Wednesday was a transition day at SXSW. To quote Eric D. Snider: "You can tell the SXSW music fest is starting and the film fest is ending because everyone's skinny and bearded instead of fat and bearded."

SXSW Scene. With so many things happening, I forgot to mention my Spike Lee sighting. While riding a shuttle bus late Tuesday afternoon, my eagle-eyed colleague Jette Kernion spied Lee walking with John Pierson, an original investor in Lee's She's Gotta Have It, now arguably best known as the husband of SXSW Producer Janet Pierson. Our shuttle bus instantly transformed into a Hollywood Stars Tour Bus, as we all stood up and gawked. Lee was in town for a special screening of Passing Strange, about the Broadway rock musical.

Cinematical Coverage. The last title in the SXSW Presents Fantastic Fest at Midnight section to premiere, The Haunting in Connecticut, struck William Goss as "a run-of-the-mill spooker." Virginia Madsen, Martin Donovan, and Elias Koteas star. Lionsgate will release the film on March 27. The Snake, a comedy about "an entirely unlikable character," is "hilarious from the outset," says Kevin Kelly. Adam Goldstein stars as a man who is willing to do anything to bed a bulimic woman (Nina Braddock); Golden co-wrote and directed with Eric Kutner. The film is seeking distribution.

Ben Steinbauer's Winnebago Man"touches on issues of privacy, frustration, friendship, and loneliness ... but what I found most interesting was the theme of simple respect," wrote Scott Weinberg. The filmmaker tracks down a man whose profane tirade was caught on tape.