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Austin Film Fest to Spread “Butter” Opening Night

Austin Film Fest to Spread "Butter" Opening Night

The 18th Annual Austin Film Festival will open on October 20 with a screening of Jim Field Smith’s political satire “Butter.” The festival will also include a Centerpiece screening of Jay and Mark Duplass’ “Jeff Who Lives at Home” and close on October 27 with Nancy Savoca’s “Union Square.”

“Each of these films approaches cinematic storytelling in a unique way,” said AFF Film Program Director Stephen Jannise. “We are so proud to feature three extraordinary examples of the great diversity in contemporary filmmaking.”

Other films scheduled to screen at the festival include “The Artist,” “The Descendants,” “Shame,” “Like Crazy,” “Pariah,” and “Martha Marcy May Marlene.” For more information on this year’s AFF and more lineup details, click here.

Full festival release follows:

­ The 18th annual Austin Film Festival & Conference (October 20-27th) has just announced this year’s chosen opening, centerpiece and closing night films. The opening night comedy Butter about the cut-throat world of butter carving will screen October 20th. Co-writer/director Jay Duplass will be in attendance for this year’s Centerpiece film, Jeff Who Lives At Home, playing October 22nd. Closing night is presented by Wells Fargo Advisors and features Union Square with actress Mira Sorvino in attendance on October 27th.

“Each of these films approaches cinematic storytelling in a unique way,” says AFF Film Program Director Stephen Jannise. “We are so proud to feature three extraordinary examples of the great diversity in contemporary filmmaking.”

Butter is an appetizing comedy set in Iowa, the heartland of America, about competition at its most cut-throat. Butter surveys the raw ambition of Laura Pickler (Jennifer Garner), the wife of Bob Pickler (Ty Burrell), Iowa’s long-reigning champion butter carver. For 15 years, Laura has relished her high-profile role as the beautiful, loyal helpmate to her affable, artistically gifted husband. But when Bob is pressured to retire and allow someone else a chance at glory, an indignant Laura decides to enter the competition herself.

Jeff Who Lives At Home is the new comedy from Jay and Mark Duplass (Cyrus, Baghead, The Puffy Chair). Living in his mother’s basement without a job, Jeff (Jason Segel) can’t even bring himself to leave the house to run some simple errands. Instead, he sits around hoping that destiny will fall straight into his lap. After interpreting a strange coincidence as a sign that he my have finally discovered his fate, Jeff finds himself on a strange journey with his estranged brother that will take them both to some very interesting places. Jason Segel and Ed Helms give their best performances yet in a film that will move you in ways you may not expect.

Union Square is a reluctant reunion of two estranged sisters. One is on the verge of marriage; the other is on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Both struggle with truths they’re hiding from each other – and from themselves. Jenny (Tammy Blanchard) has rejected her tumultuous family and cut off communication, seeking a more ordered life far from her roots in the Bronx. And she’s almost ready to commit to her longtime fiancé when her sister Lucy (Mira Sorvino) – the personification of all that Jenny has been trying to flee – surprises her at a critical time. Lucy and Jenny’s combustible reunion brings both of them to unforeseen places, shattering and reconstructing the worlds they have both carefully constructed.

(USA, 90 min.)
Writer: Jason Micallef
Director: Jim Field Smith
Thursday, October 20, 7:00pm ­ Paramount Theater

(USA, 83 min.)
Writers/Directors: Jay Duplass, Mark Duplass
Saturday, October 22, 6:30pm ­ Paramount Theater

(USA, 80 min.)
Writers: Nancy Savoca, Mary Tobler
Director: Nancy Savoca
Thursday, October 27, 8:00p ­ Paramount Theater

Butter, Jeff Who Lives At Home and Union Station join a stellar lineup of world, U.S. and regional premieres at AFF this year, including titles like The Artist, The Descendants, Shame, Sal, Like Crazy, Pariah, Beneath the Darkness, Coriolanus, Martha Marcy May Marlene, and more. For a full list of the film lineup this year, go towww.austinfilmfestival.com/new/film_list_2011.

For more information on the 18th annual Austin Film Festival, panels, film screenings and special events, visit the official website at www.austinfilmfestival.com or call 1-800-310-FEST (3378). For regular updates, follow AFF on Facebook at facebook.com/AustinFilmFestival and Twitter @austinfilmfest.

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