Let's call it binge-watching in real life. ATX Television Festival returns June 6-9, and it's bringing all the cast panels, screenings and reunions we've come to expect from Austin's celebration of all things on the small screen.
This is the fest's eighth year (or "season," as they put it) of bringing TV stars and creators to Austin. Events are open to people who purchase festival badges, wristbands and single tickets.
Before we give you the skinny on the must-see TV programming for attendees, let's talk about something anyone can enjoy. The fest's TV Under the Stars returns this year, bringing an outdoor screening and music showcase to Hotel San Jose on June 7. This year, episodes of NBC comedies "Brooklyn Nine-Nine," "The Good Place" and "Superstore" will show at sundown. Lauren Ash of "Superstore" will introduce the event, which is free and open to the public. RSVP at atxtvunderthestars.splashthat.com.
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There are a couple other big shindigs open to folks with badges and wristbands: a trivia night at 6 p.m. June 6 and a karaoke party at 9:30 p.m. June 8, both at the InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel ballroom.
Here are our picks for what to check out at this year's ATX Television Festival. Find the full schedule at atxfestival.com.
DEBORAH SENGUPTA STITH
“Euphoria." The festival’s opening night event is an advance screening of HBO’s new high school drama “Euphoria,” set to premiere on June 16. The show stars Disney Channel alum Zendaya, who plays a 17-year-old recovering drug addict searching for a new identity at a new school. If the dark coming-of-age tale has a, well, Drake-ish quality of moody earnestness, it’s because the Canadian rap superstar is an executive producer on the show. Zendaya will be on hand for the premiere as will ensemble cast members Hunter Schafer, Barbie Ferreira and Eric Dane alongside show creator Sam Levinson. (7 p.m. June 6, Paramount Theatre)
“The Terror: Infamy." The first season of AMC's horror anthology series focused on a 19th-century lost expedition to the Arctic. For season two, the series moves to a Japanese internment camp during World War II. Actor and consulting producer George Takei, who has spoken about his family's devastating internment experience, will take part in a panel discussion that goes behind the scenes on the making of the show. (3:30 p.m. June 6, Alamo Ritz 1)
Phylicia Rashad. The woman who broke barriers with her ”Cosby Show” portrayal of Clair Huxtable, a successful lawyer who cut maternal warmth with razor-sharp wit, is the 2019 winner of the festival’s TV Excellence award. She’ll discuss her long television career with actress Susan Kelechi Watson of “This Is Us,” who is also known for a recurring role on “Louie.” (4:15 p.m. June 7, InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel ballroom; Rashad will also appear after the pilot screening for her new show, “David Makes Man,” at 2 p.m. June 7 at the Alamo Ritz 1)
“The League” reunion. Cast members and directors from the semi-scripted comedy reunite to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the show’s debut. Actors Paul Scheer, Nick Kroll, Jason Mantzoukas, Katie Aselton and Stephen Rannazzisi will all be in the house for the panel discussion. (9 p.m. June 7, Paramount Theatre)
“Veronica Mars." Show creator (and University of Texas alum) Rob Thomas will be on hand for a discussion about the highly anticipated series reboot coming to Hulu this summer. Sadly, leading lady Kristen Bell will not be part of the conversation, but the actors who played her father, love interest Logan and best friend Wallace will all take part. (10:30 a.m. June 8, Paramount Theatre)
“Grey’s Anatomy." The festival will screen the medical drama’s 2019 episode “Silent All These Years,” which was lauded for its sensitive handling of the issues surrounding sexual violence and its powerful message about consent. The writer and showrunner will be joined by cast members Camilla Luddington and Kim Raver to discuss how they approached the episode’s tough topics. (1:45 p.m. June 8, Alamo Ritz 1)
“The Good Place” the Podcast. Actors Marc Evan Jackson and D'Arcy Carden talk about the show’s companion podcast that takes listeners behind the scenes with weekly episodes about the making of the popular comedy. (10 a.m. June 9, InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel ballroom)
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"Into the Dark: Culture Shock." Hulu's "Into the Dark" horror series is a pretty cool take on the anthology format, made up of 12 movie-length installments that are each released a month apart. The episodes also tie into a holiday in that month. July's installment, "Culture Shock," is about a Mexican woman's passage across the Texas border into an American nightmare. Metaphors! Who doesn't love a metaphor in a horror story? Cast members (including star Martha Higareda and "X-Men" alum Shawn Ashmore) and the director will be there for a Q&A. (3 p.m. June 6, Alamo Ritz 2)
"Los Espookys." Get into Julio Torres. The comedian and "Saturday Night Live" writer is one of the most exciting (read: strange) voices in comedy today, and he co-created this primarily Spanish-language HBO comedy about a group of horror-lovers who start a business "providing horror to those who need it." Torres and fellow creators/producers/stars Fred Armisen and Ana Fabrega will be there for a Q&A, along with other "Los Espookys" actors. (4:15 p.m. June 7, Alamo Ritz 1)
"Archer." This FXX (formerly just regular ol' FX) animated comedy has been taking us to the (read this in a high-pitched voice) danger zone for 10 years. That is truly wild. I will be watching the newly space-faring Sterling Archer and sinking into the warm haze of my college memories while I listen to star H. Jon Benjamin during the Q&A. (10 a.m. June 8, Alamo Ritz 1)
"Grown-ish." Fans of the Freeform spinoff of "Black-ish" can catch a new episode, followed by a stacked Q&A including star Yara Shahidi, executive producer Craig Doyle and co-stars Chloe and Halle Bennet (aka Beyoncé-approved singers Chloe x Halle). (Noon June 8 at Alamo Ritz 1)
"Roswell: New Mexico": A Conversation. You say "aliens" and "LGBTQ visibility," and I say, "When should I get in line?" The cast, creator and co-showrunner will be there for a Q&A. (1:30 p.m. June 9, Trinity Hall)
"Younger." The panelists are yet to be announced for this sixth-season premiere screening of the TV Land show. But Hilary Duff is on the show, so. ... (2 p.m. June 9, Badgeholder Lounge)
"Good Trouble." "The Fosters" was full of love and drama and explored the highs and challenges of family life, from birth families to the adoption system. This spinoff just completed its first season and follows sisters Callie (Maia Mitchell) and Mariana (Cierra Ramirez) as they finished higher degrees and moved to Los Angeles to navigate work, love and young adulthood. Like "The Fosters," the show explores many topics, including the Black Lives Matter movement, gender inequality in the workplace and LBGTQ issues. Plus, Callie and Mariana are visited by their moms and siblings, so you get those character updates. Mitchell and Ramirez will be at the fest panel along with creator, executive producer and writer Joanna Johnson. (10 a.m. June 7, Alamo Ritz 1)
Inside the Writers Room: "Vida." Learn how the all-Latinx writers develop the stories and scripts for this show, now in its second season, about two sisters who move back home after their mother's death. With creator and executive producer Tanya Saracho and writers Jenniffer Gomez and Gladys Rodriguez. (2:15 p.m. June 7, InterContinental Stephen F. Austin Hotel ballroom)
"Tremors: The Pilot Presentation." I am a big fan of the campy first movie but didn't follow all the sequels and eventual TV show that has its own complicated backstory (airing out of order, moving networks). Movie star Kevin Bacon will be here for this presentation that promises clips, a partial script reading and Q&A with cast and creatives. Bacon also will be here for his new show, "City on a Hill," a crime drama set in 1990s Boston. That's the fest's closing night premiere screening. ("Tremors": 10 a.m. June 8, State Theater; "City on a Hill": 7 p.m. June 8, Paramount Theatre)
"One Day at a Time." The cancellation after three seasons still stings (Netflix is still defending the decision), but the #SaveODAAT campaign is still going. This will be a celebration and screening with creators and cast, including Justina Machado, Melissa Fumero, Todd Grinnell and Stephen Tobolowsky. (12:15 p.m. June 16, Stateside Theatre)
"Atypical." The executive producers and some cast members will talk about this Netflix show built around 18-year-old Sam (Keir Gilchrist), who is on the autism spectrum, and his family and growing circle of friends. One of the strengths of the show is how each character, from teens to adults, is given a rich inner life and storylines. (11:45 a.m. June 9, Alamo Ritz 1)