Independent Television Service to Premiere FUTURESTATES, a New Online Fictional Short Film Series, at SXSW 2010

Series Explores Possible Future Scenarios Through the Prism of Today’s Global Realities Can You Imagine the Future?

SXSW Premiere March 14, 2010

Fill 54 Created with Sketch. PDF Download

Visit the FUTURESTATES website 

(San Francisco, CA, March 12, 2010)— The Independent Television Service (ITVS), which brings independently produced, high-quality public broadcasting and new media programs to local, national, and international audiences, will premiere six episodes of FUTURESTATES, its new online series, at the upcoming 2010 SXSW Film Festival on Sunday, March 14, 2010 at 5 PM in the G-Tech/ACC Theater. FUTURESTATES presents an intriguing collection of 11 short films offering diverse visions about what life in America will be like in the decades and centuries to come. 

What is the America of the future? In this series of fictional shorts, each episode presents a different filmmaker’s vision of American society in the not-too-distant future, fusing an exploration of social issues with elements of speculative and science fiction. The SXSW premiere is a unique opportunity to see these groundbreaking new films on the big screen in HD, at a one-of-a-kind film festival. 

ITVS worked with today’s best and emerging independent filmmakers to complete the 11 films – each about 15 minutes in length — to produce FUTURESTATES. The series launched as an immersive destination website on March 8th at, and will be available for free via streaming video with subsequent distribution on 

Filmmakers Greg Pak (Mister Green), Annie Howell (Tia & Marco), Aldo Velasco(Tent City), and Garret Williams (The Rise) will be in attendance for the Q&A following the SXSW screening, along with members of the ITVS staff. 

In addition, ITVS will be co-hosting an evening celebration with PBS, NPR, and other public media partners at the Austin City Limits Studio at KLRU TV, on Sunday, March 14 beginning at 9 PM. The event will celebrate the launch of FUTURESTATES, as well as other public media programming, and will feature two of today’s hottest musical acts: Band of Skulls and Nichole Atkins and the Black Sea

ITVS will also be presenting a FUTURESTATES booth at the SXSW tradeshow, featuring mini-screenings of the five programs not presented in the festival, along with gifts, prizes, and hot popcorn. 

The following six FUTURESTATES mini-features will make their festival debut: 

Mister Green Director: Greg Pak In this parable about change, a jaded government undersecretary becomes the unwitting test subject for an experimental program to curb global warming. 

Plastic Bag Director: Ramin Bahrani Struggling with its immortality, a lost plastic bag ventures through the environmentally barren remains of America as it narrates its search for its master, the young woman who owned and used it in an era long since past. 

The Rise Director: Garret Williams In the radically altered housing market of the future, an older couple must forego their dreams of retirement and home ownership and in the process, adapt to the ever-evolving definition of the American dream. 

Silver Sling Director: Tze Chun In the polarized economy of the near future, corporations offer subsidies to their high-ranking female employees to pay for surrogate pregnancies and chemically accelerated births. Here, a struggling career surrogate must decide whether or not to carry the child of two potential clients, thus giving up her last chance to have a child of her own. 

Tent City Director: Aldo Velasco In a world where housing is granted only to the powerful few, a father who makes his living evicting the powerless must choose between his responsibilities as a provider for his family and his moral principles. 

Tia & Marco Director: Annie Howell When a pregnant border patrol agent discovers an illegal immigrant child hiding in her home, she is forced to question her loyalty to closed borders 

For more information visit: 


The Independent Television Service (ITVS) funds and presents award-winning documentaries and dramas on public television, innovative new media projects on the Web, and the Emmy® Award-winning weekly series Independent Lens on Tuesday nights at 10 PM on PBS. ITVS is a miracle of public policy created by media activists, citizens, and politicians seeking to foster plurality and diversity in public television. ITVS was established by a historic mandate of Congress to champion independently produced programs that take creative risks, spark public dialogue, and provide for underserved audiences. Since its inception in 1991, ITVS programs have revitalized the relationship between the public and public television, bringing TV audiences face-to-face with the lives and concerns of their fellow Americans. More information about ITVS can be obtained by visiting ITVS is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people. 

CONTACT: Dennis Palmieri, 415-356-8383 ext. 256 Cell: 415-902-1831 Voleine Amilcar, 415-356-8383 ext., 254

Posted on March 12, 2010