Mar 7, 2024 - News

2 films about New Orleans to debut at South by Southwest

Screenshot shows King Zulu dressed in his regalia.

"A King Like Me" is a documentary about the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club. Image: Courtesy of Broad and Orleans Productions.

Two New Orleans-made films have their world premiere this weekend at South by Southwest in Austin.

Why it matters: The prestigious SXSW Film & TV Festival draws creatives from around the globe and is considered a launchpad for people in the film industry.

The big picture: "A King Like Me" is a documentary about the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club.

  • It examines the impact COVID had on the krewe — 16 deaths — and dives into how Black culture has shaped New Orleans and the nation, according to the film's description. Matthew O. Henderson is the director.
Image shows a screenshot from the "Roleplay" film a woman with her hands in the air.
Tulane University released a sexual violence survey in 2018 that led to a play and is now a documentary called "Roleplay." Image: Courtesy of Jenny Mercein/Roleplay

"Roleplay" is about sexual politics at Tulane University and how sexual violence shapes students on their paths to adulthood.

  • The documentary started as student-driven play in 2019, co-producer Jenny Mercein tells Axios.
  • She's heading to Austin with the production this week in hopes of getting the film picked up by a distributor.

Two more films debuting at the festival have New Orleans ties, she says, through their producers or filmmakers:

  • Gasoline Rainbow: Five teenagers from small-town Oregon decide to embark on one last adventure — a trip to the Pacific coast.
  • The In Between: Following the death of her brother, filmmaker Robie Flores returns to her hometown on the Texas/Mexico border in this coming-of-age film.

State of Play: SXSW starts Friday and describes itself as celebrating "the convergence of technology, film, television and music."

  • Meghan, the duchess of Sussex, is one of the keynote speakers.

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