SXSW is March 8 thru 17. To get your SXSW pop culture fix started up, consider this offering: Adam Rifkin’s “Reality Show.” He has taken his successful Showtime series, about the underbelly of reality TV, and turned it into a feature film. Enjoy.

Press release follows:


REALITY SHOW, the satirical new drama by Writer/Director/Actor Adam Rifkin ( Detroit Rock City, The Dark Backward, LOOK) will have its world premiere at the 2013 South by Southwest Film Festival on Friday, March 8, 2013 at 9:30 p.m. at The Alamo Drafthouse – The Ritz 1 & 2.

REALITY SHOW is a dark look into the amoral world of reality television and is an indictment of a medium that we are all equal parts fascinated and repulsed by. The film’s journey to the big screen shares a unique kinship with few other motion pictures.

Though originally conceived as a movie, REALITY SHOW first found itself a life in the form an acclaimed television series that aired on Showtime in late 2012. After its successful run, Rifkin, never giving up on his initial vision, took it upon himself to re-edit all 10 episodes into a 90 minute film.

“The feature and the series turned out quite differently from one another,” Rifkin said,” more so than I ever could have anticipated. The series is very much an overt comedy where the feature ended up being a dark and sinister drama. They’re two completely different entities. I’m beyond elated that our world premier is going to be in Austin at South by Southwest!”

Though the idea of cutting footage from a series into a movie is rare, there is precedent. Ingmar Bergman’s Fanny and Alexander had first been a Swedish mini-series, the comedy The Trip starring Steve Coogan was first a British sit-com and David Lynch’s Mulholland Drive was repurposed from an unaired pilot.

In addition to writing, directing and starring in REALITY SHOW, Rifkin also shared producer duties with his managers, Jared Hoffman and Chris Pollock of Generate as well as Lati Grobman and Christa Campbell of Campbell Grobman Films.

REALITY SHOW follows the exploits of reality television show producer Micky Wagner (Rifkin) and his amoral attempt to re-invent the reality genre. Fed up with how staged and phony all reality shows are, Mickey’s revolutionary idea is to pick an average American family and put them under all encompassing surveillance…without their knowledge. He’s convinced that if they are unaware that cameras are following their every move, the natural drama of life that unfolds will be far more compelling than anything a team of Hollywood writers could manufacture. Unfortunately Mickey soon realizes that the family he picked is boring. In a desperate attempt to salvage the show and keep the network happy, Mickey begins to interfere. By introducing obstacles and conflict into the family’s life, Mickey quickly finds that betraying his original conceit and messing with his subjects makes for a far more fascinating show. Unfortunately for the family, they have no idea why they are suddenly besieged with so much bad luck. As the show gets better, the family starts to disintegrate and their lives begin to spiral downward. Mickey rationalizes that all will be ok in the end, for once the episodes begin airing, fame will heal all the wounds.
Rifkin’s eclectic career ranges from broad family comedies to cult classics to dark and gritty urban dramas. He’s an A-list screenwriter with such tent poles to his credit as Mousehunt, and Underdog. He also wrote, produced and directed the critically acclaimed and award winning LOOK, which also spawned a series of the same name that aired on Showtime.

In addition to Rifkin, the show stars Chicago actor and musician, Scott Anderson, two-time daytime Emmy nominee for her portrayal of Emily Stewart on As the World Turns Kelly Menighan Hensley, and up and comer Monika Tilling.

REALITY SHOW will have its world premiere at the South by Southwest Film Festival on Friday, March 8, 2013 at 9:30p.m. at The Alamo Ritz with 3 additional screenings during the festival. The film was produced by Jared Hoffman, Chris Pollack, Adam Rifkin, Lati Grobman and Christa Campbell of Campbell Grobman Films

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Filed under Entertainment, pop culture, Reality TV, Showtime, SXSW, Television

One response to “SXSW: Adam Rifkin’s REALITY SHOW

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