Interested in seeing some of the best short films from local directors, but don’t know where to start? Good news: The ShowGO! is here to help. A monthly showcase uniting the film and comedy communities, ShowGO! presents their seventh installment this Saturday, October 8th at Stateside at The Paramount.
More a multi-media networking event than just a screening series, ShowGO! mixes films, comedy and members of Austin’s film industry with just the right amount of alcohol. The evening opens with a 7 p.m. cocktail hour complete with DJs, moving into the recently reopened Stateside at The Paramount for shorts and stand up.
One of The ShowGO!’s producers, Ben Snyder, spoke with us about the motivation for creating a series of industry-focused parties.
“The idea of a networking event that showcased short films, music and comedy came out of a seminar with Texas Film Scene creator Curtis Wayne, Austin Film Meet Facilitator Cherdon Bedford, filmmaker Val Gameiro and myself,” he explains. “We all agreed that there needed to be a consistent event that gave Austin and Texas filmmakers a place to showcase their work on a monthly basis.”
This Saturday, the ShowGO! audience will be treated to screenings of Sleep Study (John Merriman), Petting Sharks (Craig Elrod), Red Wednesday (Nazanin Shirazi), Perils in Nude Modeling (Scott Rice) and Mnemosyne Rising (Miguel Alvarez).
Many of these filmmakers have previously worked together, but some also meet to discuss productions on a site co-run by Snyder.
“The Texas Film Scene is a social networking site where Texas filmmakers connect online,” he says. “It has 1000 members. The ShowGO! is the physical manifestation of that network—the idea was that people would meet online and then could watch each other's work with a live audience at a monthly event with alcohol.”
While getting a group of filmmakers together is markedly easier when there are drinks involved, The ShowGO! also offers a chance for people to do more than just schmooze.
“Most networking events you go to, you really don’t know who you’re talking to; you just give people your business card. You can connect on a personal level but you can’t really see the person’s work, usually.”
ShowGO! doesn’t just facilitate conversations between filmmakers and industry insiders; they also help local comics connect with producers, casting directors and other interested creatives.
This month, 2011 Funniest Person in Austin winner Andy Ritchie and runner-up Chris Cubas are on the lineup.
“The ShowGO! evolved into what it is now once Megan Doyle came on and began connecting the film community to the comedy community,” Snyder says. “The result has been that we have discovered that there isn't much of a gap between the comedy scene and the film scene, as the film Sleep Study proves; comedian John Merriman directs the film and works with filmmakers of another being shown this weekend, Petting Sharks (by Craig Elrod), and also stars in Scott Rice's film, Perils in Nude Modeling, which headlines our lineup. It's neat how it kind of came full circle that way.”
In addition to showcasing unexpected connections, The ShowGO! also helps facilitate them: Snyder himself has even forged a partnership thanks to the event.
“One project I’m working on now got its start at The ShowGO! Alan Ray came, he showed a sci-fi web series he created, and now we’re working on something together for the SyFy Channel. I didn’t really know him before the show. There are other people who have told me they’re working on things with people they met there, a few commercials.”
Take a look at Sleep Study, screening Saturday:
Tickets for the Saturday, October 8 ShowGO! are $10 and available online.