Austin Film Festival 2017 announces first wave of films

10:05 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22, 2017 Things to Do

Austin filmmaker Brandon Dickerson’s “Amanda & Jack Go Glamping” (starring David Arquette and Amy Acker), “Flock of Four” and the season finale of HBO’s new drama “The Deuce” will all world-premiere at the 2017 Austin Film Festival, it was announced Tuesday as the the writer-focused fest revealed its first slate of films.

"The Duce" (photo: HBO)

Other titles at the fest include “Permanent” with Rainn Wilson and Patricia Arquette, “Please Stand By” with Dakota Fanning and Toni Collete, and “24 Hours to Live” with Ethan Hawke and Liam Cunningham. “Duce” creators David Simon and George Pelecanos will be in attendance.

 AFF will also present a remastered retrospective of 1985 Austin-produced cult horror film “Confessions of a Serial Killer” starring famed local filmmaker Robert Burns. Based on the crimes of serial killer Henry Lee Lucas, “Confessions” was the first independent film acquired for distribution by Roger Corman. 

 Already confirmed to attend the fest this year are David Arquette for Glamping, Sasheer Zamata of Saturday Night Live fame and Brent Morin for the world premiere of comedy The Outdoorsman.

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These actors will join AFF’s already announced Distinguished Screenwriter awardee Kenneth Lonergan. 

The complete list of programming, including over 100 more films as well as hundreds of panels, will be announced in late September. AFF takes place Oct. 26 to Nov. 2.

Writers: Zach Dean, Jim McClain, Ron Mita

Director: Brian Smrz

Starring: Ethan Hawke, Liam Cunningham, Rutger Hauer

Writer/Director: Brandon Dickerson

Starring: David Arquette, Amy Ackers, Adan Canto, June Squibb

 With his mid-life marriage on rocky ground, dejected one-hit-author Jack Spencer goes glamping (glamorous camping) with his wife, Amanda, in search of a spark. When the isolated retreat suddenly becomes anything but private with the arrival of double booking honeymoon hipsters and a super-hunk land owner, Jack must learn to get over himself as he dives deep off the grid into a comedic exploration of love, failure, relevance, and miniature donkeys.

Writer/Director: Mark Blair

Starring: Robert Burns, Dennis Hill, Berkley Garrett

 The thinly veiled account of the chilling life and crimes of notorious Henry Lee Lucas, whose reign of terror came to an end on July 11th, 1983.

World Premiere

Creators: David Simon, George Pelecanos

Starring: James Franco, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Zoe Kazan

 Created by George Pelecanos and David Simon and starring James Franco and Maggie Gyllenhaal, The Deuce follows the story of the legalization and subsequent rise of the porn industry in New York’s Times Square from the early 1970s through the mid-1980s, exploring the rough-and-tumble world at the pioneering moments of what would become the billion-dollar American sex industry. George Pelecanos, David Simon, James Franco and Nina K. Noble executive produce.

Writer/Director: Gregory Caruso

Starring: Braeden Lemasters, Shane Harper, Coco Jones, Reg E. Cathey

 In 1959, four best friends search for a legendary jazz musician and discover an unforgettable night of culture and music in South Central, Los Angeles.

World Premiere

Director: Pablo Bryant

 Mr. Fish, one of the most dangerous American cartoonists working today, is faced with selling his art or selling his soul.

North American Premiere

Writer/Director: Brad Silberling

Starring: Ben Kingsley, Hera Hilmar, Peter Serafinowicz

 The life of a fugitive war criminal takes a turn for the unexpected in An Ordinary Man. After years of hiding in plain sight following the brutal Balkan wars, a man known only as the General, ferried nightly from couch to couch by faithful loyalists, at last is placed in an apartment of his own. When Tanja, the young housemaid of the prior tenant unwittingly stumbles through his door, it’s clear to both that her simply departing will not be an option. What follows is a cat and mouse game of intentions and identities, in which the General’s need for human contact drives him to take increasingly greater risks, pressing to unearth Tanja’s secrets…and setting them both on a collision course with the past.

World Premiere

Writer: Ryan Gilmour

Director: David Haskell

Starring: Brent Morin, Sasheer Zamata, Spencer Grammer

 As he prepares to cut ties with society and spend a year in the mountains, an aspiring wilderness writer meets a goal oriented, corporate woman who has quit her job to 'find herself.' He falls in love, but ultimately must ask himself what he wants: the 'normal' life he's avoided his whole life, or living his outdoor fantasy, alone.

Writer/Director: Colette Burson

Starring: Kira McClean, Rainn Wilson, Patricia Arquette

Set in 1983 in small town Virginia, Permanent  centers around a 13-year-old and her family. The story of a hairstyle gone incredibly wrong and a young girl’s plight to fit in while encountering bullies at a new school.

Writer: Michael Golamco

Director: Ben Lewin

 Magnolia Pictures’ upcoming dramedy starring Dakota Fanning and Toni Collette.

North American Premiere
Writer/Director: Karl R. Hearne

Starring: Hugh Thompson, Lola Flanery

A ghostly, psychological drama about a young woman who disappears from her building and her solitary landlord who tries to track her down.

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