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November 28, 2017

Featured Speakers Brendan Greene, Sam Mathews and Rahul Sood Announced for SXSW Gaming

Competitive gaming is in the spotlight of the latest SXSW Gaming Featured Speakers announcement including PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG) creator Brendan Greene, Fnatic founder and chairman Sam Mathews, and Unikrn CEO Rahul Sood.

In addition to new Featured Speakers, SXSW Gaming is pleased to announce our collaboration with Next Generation Esports (NGE) to program this year’s Tournament Stage. Plus, the Tabletop Experience powered by Cascade Games will host a variety of tournaments and games in March including Star Wars: Destiny Galactic Qualifier.

Access to SXSW Gaming Featured Speakers and other Gaming festival-related events is complimentary to all SXSW badgeholders, and can also be accessed with a SXSW Gaming Wristband.

New Featured Speakers Added

Brendan Greene (Creative Director, PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS) – Brendan Greene, a.k.a. PLAYERUNKNOWN, is the Creative Director of the breakout hit PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG). PUBG has become one of the most popular video games in the world, breaking multiple Guinness World Records and taking the gaming and live-streaming communities by storm. In addition to his role as Creative Director, Brendan serves as an ambassador and spokesperson for PUBG.

Sam Mathews (Founder and Chairman, Fnatic) – Sam Mathews is the founder and chairman of Fnatic, regarded as the leading brand within Esports. Launched in 2004, Fnatic manages pro-gamers and has won thousands of tournaments across more than 20 games, the most out of any organisation. In November 2015, Fnatic became the first team within Esports to launch its own line of hardware products, Fnatic Gear, through Indiegogo.

Rahul Sood (CEO, Unikrn) – Rahul Sood is the CEO of Unikrn, a Seattle-based esports startup. Unikrn’s mission is to heighten the experience of watching and participating in esports. Unikrn is venture-backed and raised a total of 10 million dollars with investors such as Ashton Kutcher, Mark Cuban, Liz Murdoch, Shari Redstone, Binary Capital and many others. In October of 2017, it was announced that Unikrn sold over 127 million Unikoins in the biggest token sale in esports and video games.

More SXSW Gaming Featured Speakers include Christina Alejandre (ELEAGUE), Steve Arhancet (Team Liquid), Brendan Donohue (NBA 2K League), Nate Nanzer (Overwatch League), and Pete Vlastelica (Major League Gaming).

Explore Featured Speakers

Join Us at SXSW Gaming 2018

SXSW Gaming is the nexus of all things gaming at the legendary SXSW Conference & Festival during the second half of SXSWeek in the Austin Convention Center and throughout downtown Austin. Blending all the things that make gaming great into one wild experience that only SXSW can provide, don’t miss out on the next generation of gaming festivals.

Immerse yourself in the gaming industry and learn more about the impact that’s being made at SXSW, register to attend with an official SXSW Gaming Wristband and book your hotel reservation for the 2018 SXSW Gaming Festival.

Buy A Gaming Wristband

Brendan Greene, Sam Mathews, and Rahul Sood – Photos courtesy of Speakers

The post Featured Speakers Brendan Greene, Sam Mathews and Rahul Sood Announced for SXSW Gaming appeared first on SXSW.

Source: SxSW Film

November 27, 2017

The Unedited StoryCorps Interview: Monna Sabouri and Asmaa Elamrousy

Did you know that the stories you hear from us on NPR and our podcast are excerpts of interviews pulled from the StoryCorps Archive? Participants visit one of our recording locations with a friend or family member to record a 40-minute interview with the help of a trained StoryCorps Facilitator, or record a conversation using the StoryCorps App. We’re sharing this unedited interview from the StoryCorps Archive with you in its original form.


In April 2017, Asmaa Elamrousy interviewed her friend, Monna Sabouri, about her experiences as an Iranian-American actress and some of the obstacles she’s had to face in her career. This conversation was recorded by StoryCorps in New York City in partnership with the Muslim American Leadership Alliance.

Monna talks about growing up in New York and visiting family in Iran every summer. She describes how awesome it was to be raised in two different cultures, as it showed her two sides of a story.

When Asmaa asks Monna about her experiences as an actress, she lets out a big sigh. Monna tells her about her first audition, which was for the role of “daughter of terrorist”, and talks about some of the disappointment she’s experienced when it comes to the types of roles that have been available to her, “because I know that not all Muslims are terrorists, we all know this, but white writers in a room somewhere writing for a show think this to be true about Muslims, so they write it… It’s always caricatures.”

About 23 minutes into their conversation, though, she tells Asmaa about a recent casting that called for an “East Indian.” Instead of playing her in a stereotypical way, she went into her audition with an Italian American New York accent, saying, “Yeah, you know — we could also be from Queens!”

All material within the StoryCorps collection is copyrighted by StoryCorps. StoryCorps encourages use of material on this site by educators and students without prior permission, provided appropriate credit is given. This interview has not been fact-checked, and may contain sensitive personal information about living persons.

Source: SNPR Story Corps

November 26, 2017

Rose McGowan, Annabella Sciorra, and Asia Argento Had a Home-Cooked Meal Courtesy of Anthony Bourdain

If any good is to come from the ongoing sexual-harassment scandal emanating out of Hollywood and reaching seemingly every other corner of the country, it’ll be thanks to those who have come come forward with their stories. At the top of that list would likely be Rose McGowan, who’s been leading the charge against Harvey Weinstein and others for months now. As seen online, the actress and activist was joined by Asia Argento and Annabella Sciorra — both of whom have also accused Weinstein of rape — for a “meeting of the minds.”

Making the gathering even better is the fact that Anthony Bourdain, who’s dating Argento and has been a vocal critic of Weinstein and others, cooked for the three women; he called it “an honor” to do so. McGowan linked Ronan Farrow in her Instagram post documenting the evening, as he has written several New Yorker articles about Weinstein.

Bourdain was asked what he cooked, and Argento responded: “He cooked us food filled with love and strength.” No word on whether they’re saving revenge — which is best served cold, natch — for later.

Instagram Photo

Source: IndieWire film

November 26, 2017

‘Call Me by Your Name’ Is Best Opener of 2017; ‘Darkest Hour’ Launches Well

Two year-end Oscar contenders, “Call Me by Your Name” (Sony Pictures Classics) and “Darkest Hour” (Focus Features), opened well over the Thanksgiving holiday. “Call Me by Your Name” is now the top initial weekend platform grosser of the year, at a level often seen by films that end up as Oscar leaders. While Wednesday opener “Darkest Hour” didn’t perform at the same level, Focus launched the World War drama at a level consistent with its favorable reviews and strong media positioning.

“Bombshell: The Heddy Lamarr Story” (Zeitgeist/Kino Lorber) enjoyed an excellent initial New York single theater showing, as yet another documentary about creative world figure drew unexpected interest.

Two robust recent openers, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” (Fox Searchlight) and “Lady Bird” (A24), showed continued strength, pulling crossover interest that positions them both for further expansion and much higher ultimate returns.


Call Me by Your Name (Sony Pictures Classics) –  Metacritic: 95; Festivals include: Sundance, Berlin, Toronto 2017

$404,874 in 4 theaters; PTA (per theater average): $101,219

Luca Guadagnino’s acclaimed romantic drama (from a script by director James Ivory) looks to best “Lady Bird” as the top platform opener of the year, helped by a holiday Friday and strong results throughout the weekend. It is also a milestone as the best-performing gay romance since “Brokeback Mountain” 12 years ago (which performed better during a much stronger period for specialized film).

For Sony Pictures Classics, “Call Me” represents a return to form as their best opening since their two smash Woody Allen titles (“Midnight in Paris” and “Blue Jasmine”) and four times as big as any of their debut weekends over the last two years.

This combined with superb reviews and inevitable awards attention should propel this into a strong position. Weinstein a year ago was able to push the $30,000 three-day PTA opening of “Lion” into a well-hyped mainstream $51-million Best Picture nominee. SPC will give “Call Me” a more calibrated slow release aimed at paralleling nominations and national exposure closer to the Oscar nominations in January.

What comes next: The next cities don’t open until December 15, with most major markets due by Christmas.

4106_D013_00374_CROP(ctr) Gary Oldman stars as Winston Churchill in director Joe Wright's DARKEST HOUR, a Focus Features release.Credit: Jack English / Focus Features

“Darkest Hour”

Jack English

Darkest Hour (Focus) –  Metacritic: 73; Festivals include: Telluride, Toronto, Hamptons 2017

$176,000 in 4 theaters; PTA: $44,000; Cumulative: $247,000

Joe Wright’s rendition of a crucial month in world history opened well. The telling of Winston Churchill’s takeover as Prime Minister just as Britain faced an existential crisis from Hitler is primed as a significant awards contender, particularly for Gary Oldman’s performance. It opened on Wednesday, taking some gross from the weekend, but in any case this marks a robust initial start.

What comes next: The next big city dates come on December 8, with a nationwide release on December 22.

The Man Who Invented Christmas (Bleecker Street) –  Metacritic: 61; Festivals include: Cork 2017

$1,343,000 in 626 theaters; PTA: $2,146; Cumulative: $1,797,000

The second biofilm about an English author creating a classic novel loved by children (after “Goodbye Christopher Robin”) had similar mixed results. This biopic about Charles Dickens writing “A Christmas Carol” went wider to maximize the holidays and a potentially larger crossover audience, but family films “Coco” and “Wonder” cut into its potential.

What comes next: This should hold on through some possible holiday dates.

Bombshell: The Heddy Lamarr Story (Zeitgeist/Kino Lorber) –  Metacritic: 56; Festivals include: Toronto 2017

$18,742 in 1 theater; PTA: $18,742

This documentary about this legendary brilliant actress scored an outstanding first weekend at New York’s IFC Center. An upbeat New York Times review (not yet factored into the Metacritic score) boosted this story about the star’s work as an inventor of early wireless technology.

What comes next: Los Angeles opens at the Nuart of Dec. 8, with other dates including calendar bookings starting this Friday.

Roman J. Israel, Esq

Denzel Washington as “Roman J. Israel, Esq.”

Week Two

Roman J. Israel, Esq. (Sony)

$4,515,000 in 1,669 theaters (+4); PTA: $2,705; Cumulative: $6,274,000

This Denzel Washington vehicle about a crusading Los Angeles lawyer made a quick expansion after its five-day platform debut, with an individual theater average rank far below other recent major expansions, well under the initial take for the actor’s “Fences” last year.

“The Breadwinner”

The Breadwinner (GKids)

$18,064 in 8 theaters (+5); PTA: $2,258; Cumulative: $44,612

Backed by Angelina Jolie, the latest foreign awards-oriented animated release from niche distributor GKids showed a minor response in its second-week expansion to new cities. These numbers don’t include a strong $11,000 opening via another distributor in Toronto.

Frances McDormand in “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Ongoing/expanding (Grosses over $50,000)

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Fox Searchlight) Week 3

$4,400,000 in 614 theaters (+541); Cumulative: $7,624,000

Martin McDonagh’s unique take on small-town U.S. life continues to show major initial appeal. Its big third week expansion saw good results despite competition from other older-audience films. It’s one of the top multi-hundred theater specialized results of the year, perfectly timed to maximize its likely awards attention. It will take more weeks to assess its potential crossover appeal (for now “The Big Sick” at $42 million is the top performer among specialized wider films), but so far everything has broken right.

Beanie feldstein lady bird greta gerwig

“Lady Bird”


Lady Bird (A24) Week 4

$4,042,000 in 791 theaters (+553); Cumulative: $10,703,000

With a major jump in theaters, Greta Gerwig’s hit comedy doubled its total over the five-day holiday. It’s sharing specialized/upscale attention with “Three Billboards,” which performed better in fewer theaters this weekend. Both are doing well, with the one-week earlier “Lady Bird” bigger so far. Early award nods will help this sustain a lengthy run through the holidays and beyond.

"The Florida Project"

“The Florida Project”


The Florida Project (A24) Week 8

$298,745 in 164 theaters (-53); Cumulative: $4,744,000

The holiday boosted Sean Baker’s acclaimed independent film with a gross nearly equal to last weekend despite a drop in theaters.

Loving Vincent (Good Deed) Week 10

$263,123 in 147 theaters (-65); Cumulative: $5,148,000

The unexpected animated sleeper based on Van Gogh’s work continues to thrive in its tenth week.

Last Flag Flying (Lionsgate) Week 4

$185,000 in 98 theaters (+39); Cumulative: $679,792

Richard Linklater’s latest via Amazon expanded again, though still not wide, with continued modest results.

My Friend Dahmer (FilmRise) Week 4

$155,000 in 75 theaters (no change); Cumulative: $742,113

The gross remained steady for this graphic novel adaptation about the serial killer. That’s a good sign for this still limited release that could find wider interest, particularly among younger audiences.

Victoria & Abdul (Focus) Week 10

$118,000 in 144 theaters (-113); Cumulative: $21,907,000

As Focus puts its spotlight on “Darkest Hour,” their earlier British biopic success is winding up its run with a terrific total.

“The Square”

The Square (Magnolia) Week 5

$(est.) 100,000 in 51 theaters (-12); Cumulative: $(est.) 780,000

The Swedish Cannes Palme D’Or winner continues to show interest ahead of most recent subtitled releases.

Noviatiate (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 5

$76,526 in 118 theaters (+57); Cumulative: $367,707

This Sundance dramatic competition feature hasn’t clicked with audiences, only attracting a handful of ticket buyers in its expansion.


Jane (Abramorama/National Geographic) Week 6

$83,337 in 51 theaters (-33); Cumulative: $1,168,000

This leading Oscar documentary contender continues to do steady business ahead of all but a handful in the genre this year.

The Killing of a Sacred Deer (A24) Week 6

$65,278 in 59 theaters (-161); Cumulative: $2,111,000

Yorgos Lathimos’ second English language feature will far short of his earlier “The Lobster,” which totaled a surprising domestic $9 million.

Also noted:

1945 (Menemsha) – $30,110 in 5 theaters; Cumulative: $123,822

Thelma (The Orchard) – $20,993 in 12 theaters; Cumulative: $49,136

Faces/Places (Cohen) – $13,733 in 10 theaters; Cumulative: $494,485

Tom of Finland (Kino Lorber) – $13,300 in 8 theaters; Cumulative: $206,220

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Source: IndieWire film

November 26, 2017

Quentin Tarantino Doesn’t Even Know How Netflix Works, Still Misses Video Stores

The way we watch movies may be changing, but Quentin Tarantino isn’t. The director, who still shoots on film and refuses to screen anything digitally at the New Beverly, is well known for having worked at a video store in his younger years — and, as evidenced by a new interview (below), he still prefers the brick-and-mortar experience to streaming sites like Netflix.

“I’m not on Netflix, so I can’t even tell you exactly how that works,” he says. “But even if you just have all the movie channels in your [TV] package — and that’s something I do have — so you hit the guide and you go down the list, and you hit there and you watch something or you tape something, and maybe you never get around to watching it or you actually do watch it, and then maybe you watch it for 10 minutes or 20 minutes, and maybe you start doing something else, and ‘Nah, I’m not really into this.’ And then that’s kind of where we’ve fallen into.”

Not feeling committed to the movie you’ve chosen was less of a problem at actual stores, the “Hateful Eight” director argues. “There was a different quality to the video store. You went down to the video store, you looked around, you picked up boxes, you read the back of the boxes — you made a choice,” he continues.

“And maybe you talked to the guy behind the counter, and maybe he pointed you toward something. And he didn’t just put something in your hand, he gave you a little bit of a sales pitch on it to some degree or another. And so the point being is, you were kind of invested in a way that you’re not invested with electronic technology when it comes to the movies.” Listen to his full thoughts below.

Source: IndieWire film

November 26, 2017

‘Justice League’ Originally Began on a More Comedic Note, but Warner Bros. Made Joss Whedon Change It

As is tradition in the DC Universe, “Justice League” has opened to mixed reviews and disappointing box-office numbers. The superhero team-up movie, which was finished by Joss Whedon after Zack Snyder had to step down to deal with a family tragedy, begins with Batman defeating an evildoer in a scene that few have singled out as being especially memorable.

According to the actor who played said ruffian, the scene was envisioned as being much funnier by Whedon — but Warner Bros. made him change it.

“I love Joss Whedon. My scene with Batman was originally conceived as a comedic scene. That’s how Joss wrote it, and that’s how we shot it,” Holt McCallany tells Men’s Fitness in a new interview. “I thought it came out great, but the studio felt it would be a mistake to open the film with a completely comedic scene, so it was re-edited a little bit. I was disappointed, but when I got home to New York I found a bottle of my favorite champagne and a note from Joss that said ‘To Battles Lost. Gratefully, Joss.’ I can’t tell you how much it meant to me that he took the time to write to me. Joss Whedon is a class act. I had the letter framed.”

Whedon is known for injecting genre fare with wit and levity, but it would appear that WB wasn’t laughing in this case.

Source: IndieWire film

November 25, 2017

Jay-Z Releases Three New ‘4:44’ Music Videos With Help From Susan Sarandon, Ron Perlman, and His Own Mother — Watch

Jay-Z has released three new videos from “4:44,” which we can officially confirm bears no relation to Abel Ferrara’s underrated “4:44 Last Day on Earth.” Susan Sarandon, Ron Perlman, Emile Hirsch, and Jay-Z’s mother Gloria Carter make appearances in the new videos for “Legacy,” “Smile,” and “Marcy Me.” Watch them on Tidal.

“Legacy. That’s why I called y’all here, not ‘cause of skin color or some wistful dream of freedom. The story you leave for people who come behind you,” Perlman says in the video for “Legacy”; Jay-Z’s thoughts on criminal justice can also be read in a New York Times op-ed he recently penned about the rapper Meek Mill being sent to prison for two years for violating the terms of his probation.

Mahershala Ali, Lupita Nyong’o, and Donald Glover have all appeared in previous videos for “4:44,” which was released the highly positive reviews earlier this year.

Source: IndieWire film

November 25, 2017

Here's the Difference Between F-stop and T-stop

Do you know what is the difference between f/stops and t/stops is? And do you know what both of them mean for photographers and cinematographers? …
Source: CW’s Flipboard Feed

November 22, 2017

The Great Thanksgiving Listen: Recipes for Success

From ironing out travel plans to deciding what side dish to bring, Thanksgiving can be stressful. However, your interview for The Great Thanksgiving Listen doesn’t have to be. We’ve put together a step-by-step guide for the big day so that you can have a relaxing, enjoyable, and fulfilling experience with your interview partner.

•   Participants will need access to a smartphone or Kindle tablet with the most recent version (3.1) of the StoryCorps App. Download the app for free through the iTunes App Store or Google Play.
•   Make sure that your interview space has a strong wifi signal, or that you have a data plan that is adequate for uploading your interview.
•   Take some time to think about who you choose to interview. While we all have a favorite aunt or uncle, The Great Listen can be an opportunity to get to know a relative or friend with whom you might not be as close. Don’t be afraid to reach out to a family member with a different worldview. Avoid trying to change their beliefs, and instead learn more about other aspects of their life — their loves, their hopes and dreams for the future, and stories from their past.
•   Take time to plan some questions ahead of the interview. For inspiration, check out our list of Great Questions. Make sure that most of your questions are open-ended. For example, ask, “What was it like to grow up in a house with so many siblings?” instead of, “Was the house hectic growing up?”
•   If you’re familiar with the space in which you are going to be recording your interview, plan ahead to make sure that you will be able to find a quiet nook for you and your partner. Not only does this ensure that your interview will be free of distracting background noise, but it also allows for an intimate setting that will help you both to feel comfortable.

•   Make sure that you and your partner are settled into a quiet place. If they’re shy, start with some simple questions. For example, ask your grandfather about his daily afternoon walk, or the book he is reading, to get warmed up.
•   Think of the interview as a conversation. Your prepared questions are a guide, not a script. If your partner goes off topic, follow their lead. Don’t hesitate to share a memory about your interview partner, especially if it highlights how much they mean to you and could potentially lead to a story. For example, “Grandma, you know we always look forward to your famous stuffing. When did you learn to make it?”
•   Be aware of your body language. A warm smile, eye contact, and nodding of the head let your partner know that you’re interested in the story they’re telling.

•   And that’s a wrap! Once your interview is complete, you can share and archive it for future generations. Create a title and summary and use keywords to highlight who, what, when, and where questions along with this year’s keyword TheGreatListen2017.
•   Share a selfie from your interview, and tag us with @StoryCorps #TheGreatListen!

Source: SNPR Story Corps

November 21, 2017

SXSW Wellness Expo: Final Call for Speakers and Instructors

Fitness discussion at SXSW 2017

For the first time, SXSW is hosting an exhibition focused on fueling your mind, body, and soul. The SXSW Wellness Expo will complement the Health & Wellness track at the SXSW Conference while offering SXSW attendees and local Austinites the opportunity to check out the latest innovative products and services in this expanding industry.

Beyond featuring forward-thinking and innovative companies within the wellness industry, the expo will also include programming stages for discussions and fitness activities as well as a space for demos and workshops to provide a unique experience to attendees.

We’re currently looking for speakers and fitness instructors to participate in the SXSW Wellness Expo. We still have a few underwritten and sponsored timeslots available. If you have a passion for wellness and want to share it with others interested in healthier living, apply today.

Activities can include demos, panel discussions, solo and dual speakers, workshops, and fitness classes and have a wide range of topics within the health and wellness landscape including but not limited to yoga, specialty diets, energy healing, physical and mental exercise, natural products, and much more.

The deadline to apply is December 1, 2017.

Apply Now

Photo by Tyler Draker

The post SXSW Wellness Expo: Final Call for Speakers and Instructors appeared first on SXSW.

Source: SxSW Film