Listen to Austin 360 Radio

SXSW Online 2021: Here's what to watch on Day 4, March 19

Eric Webb
Austin 360
Director Ava DuVernay on the red carpet during the 89th Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre in 2017. The filmmaker appears as part of SXSW Online on Friday.

It's back, and it's more comfy than ever: The first digital-only edition of South by Southwest started Tuesday. After the annual Austin conference and festivals had to cancel in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, SXSW returns with virtual programming March 16-20.

Here's what to catch on the fourth day of the fest, and check out our guide to how to watch the sessions, films and music showcases. Check the full schedule at online.sxsw.com.

Session picks

Friday's keynote is author Charles Yu, whose book "Interior Chinatown" was a New York Times bestseller and won the 2020 National Book Award for Fiction. Yu will appear in conversation with author Lisa Ling. On Thursday, SXSW tweeted that Yu and Ling will address rising anti-Asian hate speech and violence in the U.S.

The keynote comes just three days after eight people, mostly women of Asian descent, were killed in a Georgia shooting rampage. The suspect, a white man, is in custody.

Other Friday sessions to watch out for: Ava DuVernay at 10 a.m., Sen. Amy Klobuchar at 11 a.m. and musician Brian Eno at 8 p.m.

Film picks

The big film premieres are largely over, but luckily for you, almost all of the films from SXSW Online are available on demand until the end of the festival. (Provided you snagged a seat, that is.) Why not go deep on films with Texas ties?

"Inbetween Girl," filmed in Austin and Galveston, is a SXSW Film Festival selection.

Per the fest:

Feature films shot in Texas, at least partially: "Without Getting Killed or Caught," "Inbetween Girl," "Kid Candidate," "Dear Mr. Brody," "United States vs. Reality Winner," "The Hunt for Planet B," "We Are As Gods"

Short films shot in Texas: "Dorothea's Blues," "Learning Tagalog With Kayla," "Malignant," "Happiness Is a Journey," "Reklaw"

Texas high school shorts: "Metamorphism," "wired shut.," "A Really Dark Comedy," "Comeuppance," "Beyond the Model," "In Time," "The Good Wife's Guide"

More picks:Here's what to watch at SXSW Film 2021, the fest's first online edition

Music pick

At 5 p.m., catch the showcase from Hotel Vegas and Hotel Free TV. In the before times, it never felt like you’d fully experienced SXSW if you didn’t make it far enough down East Sixth Street to stand in a line wrapped around the side of beloved indie-rock dive Hotel Vegas. The club’s in-house streaming station, Hotel Free TV, serves up a selection of signature Vegas sounds. Chief Cleopatra injects a blast of burning blues rock into a celebration of pop psychedelia that also includes sets from international touring sensation Holy Wave, rapidly rising romantics Sasha and the Valentines and next wave shoegaze standouts Blushing. — Deborah Sengupta Stith

SXSW Online music picks:Sample sounds from around the world

Our full coverage of SXSW is only possible thanks to Statesman subscribers. If you're not already a subscriber, become one today at statesman.com/subscribenow.