Film Festivals
Film Piracy, Christine Vachon in Focus at SXSW Film 2005
By Elizabeth Derczo, SXSW
Oct 21, 2004, 09:02

AUSTIN, TX - October 20, 2004 - The 2005 South by Southwest (SXSW) Film Conference is happy to announce a preliminary list of speakers for the event's panels and workshops scheduled for March 12 - 15, 2005.

Among the notable participants is James Spertus, the director of U.S. Piracy Operations for the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA). Spertus will lead a discussion and presentation entitled "Movie Piracy and You" during the upcoming conference and festival. Spertus has been on the forefront of the MPAA's battle against illegal copying and distribution of motion pictures. The SXSW panel will cover a variety of related topics, including the industry screener debate, DVD pirating, and film bootlegs.

"We're thrilled Mr. Spertus will be an important part of this upcoming conference," says SXSW Festival Producer Matt Dentler. "He's one of the most respected experts on what has quickly become an overwhelming issue in today's film business. These are matters that affect everyone in the
industry, from theaters and distributors to filmmakers and film students."

The discussion led by Spertus is one of many topics already lined up for the festival. Others include:

- Christine Vachon Retrospective: The innovative and acclaimed independent film producer will take part in a discussion of her legendary career as she presents some of her most beloved work.

- Inside The Wild Brain: The San Francisco-based animation company Wild Brain recently entered into a multi-film deal to co-produce animated features with Disney's Dimension Films. The creative team behind the company will talk and take questions about its plans for becoming one of the biggest outlets for the genre.

- Making Fun of Filmmaking: They always say that comedy is harder than any other genre of filmmaking. Make it easier with the help of some of the best in the business. Comedy veterans of the film and TV world will deliver the material about what it takes to maintain a funny filmmaking career.

- Meet The (Film) Press: Journalism has been a major part of the film industry for decades. Some of the best names in the arena will gather to discuss and debate the role of film press in todayıs business.

"Year after year, attendees learn so much from the speakers," Dentler adds. "The 2005 film conference is already shaping up to be among our best, offering a fantastic balance between practical education and
industry discussion."

The SXSW Film Conference is open to all registrants. To register quickly and securely, go to

The SXSW Film Festival which runs March 11 - 19, 2005 is currently accepting submissions. The early deadline is November 8, 2004 (postmark date) with a processing fee of $25 for shorts and $35 for features. For submission information, please go to

The 2005 edition of the SXSW Film Conference and Festival will be the 12th edition of the annual event. Speakers at the 2004 conference included: Bob Berney, Rob Corddry, Jonathan Demme, Dana Harris, Molly Ivins, Steve James, Jim Jarmusch, John Landis, Christy Lemire, Richard Linklater, Eli Pariser, Sarah Price, Todd Wagner, and many more.


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