The annual SXSW festivals and conferences were among the first major economic casualties of the coronavirus in Texas.
Now, fans around the world will be able to watch films that would have been featured at SXSW through a virtual venue – no badge required.
“Anybody who has an Amazon account can watch the films. It’s in front of the paywall so you don’t have to pay to see the films and you don’t have to have to pay to be an Amazon Prime member; you just have to have any kind of Amazon account,” said SXSW Director of Film Janet Pierson.
The festival has also produced some special featurettes and Q&As to replicate the festival experience.
Not all filmmakers are participating. Some had other streaming deals, and others are waiting for theaters to reopen. But some who may have thought they missed a big break see this as a second chance.
“The films that opted in knew this was a good opportunity to get in front of a much wider, different audience,” Pierson said. “They’re films that might have gotten lost in the shuffle a little bit, so it’s kind of thrilling to be able to kind of present them in such a big way.”
The lineup includes four narrative features, three documentary features, 29 shorts and three episodics.
“One of the films, ‘My Darling Vivian,’ is about Johnny Cash’s first wife,” Pierson said. “None of us knew anything about her and there’s all this incredible archive footage of Johnny Cash you haven’t seen before. It’s great!”
Prime Video Presents The SXSW 2020 Film Festival Collection
When: Monday, April 27 – Wednesday, May 6
Where: Amazon Prime Video
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