SXSW 2018
SXSW 2018

SXSW reveals first round of speakers for 2018 festival

SXSW reveals first round of speakers for 2018 festival

SXSW Interactive Festival
SXSW returns March 9-18, 2018. Photo by Aaron Rogosin

South by Southwest has popped up with an early look at 2018 programming. On Monday, July 24, the favorite Austin festival released the first round of speakers for the event, which takes place March 9-18, 2018.

The first keynote speaker is Barry Jenkins, Academy Award-winning director and writer of Moonlight.

"We are overjoyed to invite Barry Jenkins back to SXSW as a Film Keynote having presented the world premiere of his first feature, Medicine for Melancholy, in 2008," Janet Pierson, director of SXSW, says in a release. "We couldn't be happier for his success and to have this remarkable artist with such a generous soul return to SXSW."

Jenkins is joined by fellow keynotes Esther Perel, a psychotherapist and author, and William Hurley (whurley), a technology entrepreneur and expert.

Featured speakers include space entrepreneur Bob Richards, artist and poet Cleo Wade, Empowering a Billion Women by 2020 chairman and CEO Ingrid Vanderveldt, and Future Today Institute founder Amy Webb.

"We're pleased to begin our 2018 season with strong programming that represents a diverse and talented group of pioneers in the technology, social sciences, healthcare, and entertainment industries," says SXSW chief programming officer Hugh Forrest. "The depth and breadth of knowledge these speakers bring to the event is an excellent indicator that this is going to be one of our best years ever."

SXSW is divided into three main categories — Music, Film, and Interactive — but badge access expanded in 2017 to become more inclusive. A Film badge, for example, will provide primary access to all Film programming, as well as secondary access to select Interactive and Music events.

Registration for the 2018 festival opens August 1. Badges will be available for discounted rates; get a Music, Film, or Interactive pass for $825 and Platinum access for $1,150 through September 8.