FishbowlNY correspondent Brian Reich will be filing this week from South By Southwest, the annual film and music media festival melt in Austin, Texas.
Morgan Spurlock, documentary director and producer returned to Austin and SXSW yesterday, the same festival where his award-winning documentary Super Size Me premiered three years ago, and received a hero’s welcome. Spurlock was in town to host the world premiere of What Would Jesus Buy, a documentary directed by Rob VanAlkemade that follows the crusade by Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping to fight over-consumption in American culture and “save America from the shopocalypse.” Spurlock says the goal is to secure wide distribution of the movie around Christmas when consumerism in America is at its peak.
Spurlock came sporting a heavy beard, which he says is related to his new, still very secret next project. He wouldn’t say much about the project other than it “takes a look at the state of the world today,” and that the purpose is to “make people think and question the choices that we make — help us think a bit beyond where we currently do now.” Spurlock wouldn’t confirm where the movie was being shot, but it was clear that the Middle East, and Saudi Arabia in particular, was on the location list. When pressed about the beard, he added: “When you go to a lot of these countries where there are people with darker skin tone … the beard helps me to blend in, not stand out as much.” Spurlock is directing and starring in the film and has apparently struck a deal with the Weinstein Company to distribute the film. A release date has not been set.
Spurlock also announced that 30 Days, the reality series he created with R.J. Cutler for FX, has just been picked up for a third season.