SXSW adds Ethan Hawke, Rian Johnson, Spike Lee and Lena Dunham

Feb 19, 2018

SXSW has added Ethan Hawke, Rian Johnson, Spike Lee and Lena Dunham to its list of speakers during the festival. Previously announced Film and TV keynotes include  Barry Jenkins and Darren Aranofsky; Glamour’s Samantha Barry; Common and Lena Waithe, Ethan Hawke; Tatiana Maslany; Olivier Assayas and Richard Linklater; Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy (showrunners) along with the principal cast of Westworld; Alex Winter; and the This is Us Cast.

The festival kicks off in just a few weeks and will run from March 9th to the 18th.

“The speakers announced today feature a diverse group of leaders and innovators that make SXSW the foremost destination for creative people,” said the festival’s chief programming officer Hugh Forrest. “As SXSW celebrates the 25th year of interactive and film, the cross-industry talent announced today reflects the ongoing convergence of the modern world, the trends we see throughout our programming, and the paramount reason for our now unified conference experience.”

Certainly one of the highlights for myself among the list of names above comes from The Last Jedi‘s own Rian Johnson. The Last Jedi recently broke records as the 2nd-Highest Grossing picture of 2017. Rian will be accompanied by Ram Bergman who collaborated with him on several films including The Last Jedi, Brick, and Looper.  Although The Last Jedi’ had an overall impressive run in the box office. There were some hardcore Star Wars films that shared their fair amount of criticism on the film. Johnson has been open and forward throughout social media addressing such concerns and interacting with fans that I’d imagine his session will be education for hardcore fans and casuals alike.

Rian isnt the first Star Wars director to visit SX. In 2016, attendees were treated to a session from JJ Abrams and just last year, Rogue One’s Gareth Edwards was in attendance.

Ethan Hawke and Lena Dunham are no strangers to SXSW. Dunham previously hosted a keynote speech in 2014, as well as debuted her short film “Creative Nonfiction”, five years prior. Meanwhile Ethan Hawke attended in 2016 to promote In a Valley of Violence.