‘Grow Up, Tony Phillips” Emily Hagins on why SXSW is ideal for young filmmakers

Austin’s South By Southwest Film Festival is known as a friendly place for young filmmakers, their eccentric movies, and devoted movie junkies. 

It may be the ideal forum to unveil the new indie comedy “Grow Up, Tony Phillips,” from the Austin-based 20-year-old director Emily Hagins. The quirky, micro-budget slice-of-life comedy centers on an 18-year-old man-child who doesn’t want to give up trick or treating on Halloween. 

HitFix’s Katie Hasty sat down with Hagins to discuss the film, and why SXSW seems to be the perfect place for “Tony Phillips” to meet the world.

Hagins says the fest is “very friendly in the way that Austin is very friendly to creative people and to the film specifically. It’s all very supportive of people who just love movies. And no matter how old you are, if you want to make them, they want to support you.” It also offers plenty of all-ages events, which comes in handy for not-Hagins. 

The director likewise supports other Austin-based filmmakers, and name checks locally-made films “Zero Charisma” and “The Bounceback.”

The interview is followed by a look at the film’s hilarious trailer. 

“Grow Up, Tony Phillips” stars AJ Bowen, Seth Lee and Devin Bonnée.