AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin’s South by Southwest festival kicked off the Texas Film Awards Thursday, which honored stars and filmmakers such as Brooklyn Decker and Ron Livingston.
The Texas Film Awards were started in 2001 to honor those who have made significant contributions to the Texas film scene. All proceeds from the awards go to the Austin Film Society’s artistic and educational programs.
The Austin Film Society was founded by director Richard Linklater in 1985 as a way to encourage and support young filmmakers in Texas. The AFS empowers filmmaking through a range of initiatives such as grants, screenings and a 20-acre production facility.
Before the 2019 awards, the AFS held a press conference featuring a panel of this’ year’s honorees and Texas film legends. Richard Linklater and Robert Rodriguez two Austin based directors joined this year’s award winners, Brooklyn Decker, John Lee Hancock and Ron Livingston.
When asked why the film industry took such a hold in Austin, director Robert Rodriguez replied, “it’s so authentic, it’s so diverse, it’s a fun place to live, it breeds creativity because it thrives in a great environment.”
Director Robert Rodriguez on Austin’s film scene.
Actress Brooklyn Decker, an Austin transplant, is being honored with the “Rising Star Award.” She is being given this award for her work in the critically acclaimed film “Support the Girls” which even made it onto former President Barack Obama’s 2018 list of best movies.
Screenwriter turned director John Lee Hancock is being given the Star of Texas Award, for the upcoming premiere of his new film “The Highwaymen,” a story about two Texas Rangers who took down Bonnie and Clyde.
The Texas Film Awards is also honoring the 20-year anniversary of cult classic film “Office Space” which was filmed in Austin.
“It’s so rare that you are able to pull it off and it’s so rare that anyone sees it and recognizes it. And then it’s completely unheard of that 20-years later they would still want to see it again,” said the film’s director and actor Ron Livingston. “Office Space is a pretty big moment for me and I remember Austin Texas very dearly.”
More information on the 2019 Texas Film Awards can be found here.