Having never attended a major film festival from the other side (I've only known it from the drooled over, out-of-this-world, stunningly brilliant director angle), I feel a tad bothered by the fact that I didn't do nearly enough Hammer to Nail writing and posting while in Park City. That said, out of the twenty-eight films I saw, I do think Momma's Man and Ballast were the clear narrative standouts (although I still hope to write about Sugar, Baghead, and a few others). I could have torn a few films some gore-core worthy assholes, but our plan was to get the ball rolling on a positive note. Whatever the case, I'm now more determined than ever to create much more content for South by Southwest. Which is where this post comes into play.
I considered taking this pre-festival coverage approach with regards to Sundance, but my novice hunch thought it would be more respectful to simply see things there. But that approach is a tad unrealistic, and it isn't more respectful. Especially when it comes to Austin, which has a social scene that I actually want to participate in. It's not that I'm not going to see films while I'm there. I'm going to see a butt-ton. I just really want to do my homework this time around.
We at Hammer to Nail are out to celebrate, champion, and highlight the best of low/no-budget cinema, so if your film is premiering/playing at SXSW, I'm asking you to contact me in order to send me a most up-to-date (hopefully final) screener of your film sooner than later, so that I can do as much pre-festival coverage as possible. Don't worry, these won't be posted until the films have premiered, or not before the beginning of the fest, at least. And if your film isn't covered, that doesn't mean that I/we hate it. I'm just navigating the terrain and trying to make sure that I'm not dropping the... er... nail.
If you think your film has what it takes to impress these enthusiastic eyes, shoot me an email and I'll give you an address where you can send me a DVD sooner than later. It might be the best shot your film gets at legitimate coverage by the site, at least with regards to its SXSW premiere/screenings.
It appears that our final design won't happen until after SXSW, but don't let that deter you. Hammer to Nail is going to be a definitive go-to voice for truly independent cinema in the coming weeks, months, and years, so all of the content that's generated now is going to be even prettier and more regal when the official funky-fresh website is up and running.
Write me here:
Lastly, congratulations to everyone who was accepted in this year's festival. Having received the same good news in 2006 and 2007, I can safely say that I understand the thrill you're feeling. Just wait until you get to Austin. It's funner than riding a roller coaster with a mackadocious Slurpee buzz!
(NOTE: While we're hoping to concentrate on narratives more than docs, that isn't a steadfast rule. I personally am a huge fan of non-fiction and am determined to write about something if it's a standout, ala Mike Ryan's post regarding Margaret Brown's wonderrrrrrfulllll The Order of Myths.)