Guest blogger Bart Weiss is Director of the Dallas Video Festival and president of Video Association of Dallas.
I just got back from my first trip to the Austin Film Festival. I have been to every South by Southwest fest in Austin but somehow have never been to the AFF. Perhaps because it is a festival about the screenwriter and I am not much of a writer. The fest has a different vibe then other fests , much calmer, less hype, most of the makers seemed as much like singer songwriters as filmmakers. They honored Danny Boyle, who showed his new film Slumdog Millionaire, which was an amazing visual feast. They also honored Greg Daniels, creator of the U.S. version of The Office (hey there is an episode on my TiVo) and co-creator of King on the Hill among others.
There were many D/FW folks around: the AFI-Dallas team was there, Janis Burkland from the Dallas Film Commission and Dennis Bishop from the upcoming Lone Star Film Festival.
I was on a jury for the documentary short category, which I thought was strange because what is documentary doing in a screenwriters’ fest?
I did not go to the pitch sessions, which are a key part of this experience, but they were both taken more seriously than workshops at other fests, where filmmaker sometime offer little more than platitudes. But there seemed to be a tone and quiet intensity in these rooms. cool
I am really glad I got a chance to go, finally.