Welcome to Austin, TX. Or welcome back, rather. It's my home away from home at this point, the place where I've spent so much of the last 15 years. And it's familiar by now, so when I arrive, I know where I'm going. Thursday was picking up the rental car, getting a first dinner with people, and writing up my reviews for "Green Zone" and "Remember Me" as well as that Greengrass interview. Friday was a morning of faxing papers and trying to meet deadlines for insurance stuff, things that don't care if you're at a festival, like a busted brake light on my rental car that makes me nervous I'm going to get hassled by over-zealous SXSW-crazed law enforcement. I'd hate to miss a screening because of some ridiculous technical glitch with the rental car.
That's almost what happened anyway. I got a later start than I wanted dealing with all of this, then went to the South Lamar Alamo, so I could leave my car there, catch the shuttle to the Paramount, then shuttle back over for a double-feature to close the night.
Might even have been a plan. Except the shuttle never came. So eventually, I had to hop in the rental and drive over to the Paramount anyway. By the time I found parking and walked over, it was 6:30, and the film was set to start at 7:00. At that point, there was a line around the back end of the theater. I walked around to the front of the lines to see which of them I was supposed to be in at that point with my gold film badge. As I did, cars began to pull up to the front of the theater, filled with the cast and the crew of the film, and the back doors of the first car opened. Producer Tarquin Pack and producer/writer/director Matthew Vaughn got out. And as they did, they looked over, saw me, and walked over to say hello. We'd talked after the screening of the film in December at Butt-Numb-A-Thon, and I've been eagerly waiting to see the finished film since.