SXSW 2023: 7 Exciting Entertainment Activations
by Gary Catig
SXSW is all encompassing conclave of various fields from technology, film, television, music and more. This year’s event will be held from March 10-19, and there are many things for attendees to enjoy depending on your interests.
One of the more exciting draws are the activations to promote upcoming projects from studios, movies and TV series. This year is no exception with the likes of Prime Video, HBO and Paramount all having a presence. Let’s take a look at the ones we’re most looking forward to.
Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves Tavern Experience
Schedule – Mar 10: 11am-11pm; Mar 11: 12pm-11pm; Mar 12: 11am-11pm
Location — The Highball at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar
The world premiere of Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves will be at SXSW, so it’s no surprise they are bringing an immersive experience. This seems very similar to the offsite during last summer’s San Diego Comic-Con. Come and enjoy a fluorescent “Dragon’s Brew” in an authentic tavern from the fantasy world. While exploring, you just might cross paths with the fearsome Gelatinous Cube.
The Lodge: A Paramount+ Experience
Schedule – Mar 10-13: 4pm-12am
Location – Clive Bar
Enter a vibrant slope-side hub with experiences themed around Paramount+ originals and franchises. This three-story pop-up provides a Mountain of Entertainment where you can partake in unique cocktails at bars featuring 1923, Star Trek and Paramount+ Sports. After picking up your drink, take advantage of the numerous photo ops for Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies, Beavis and Butt-Head and other fan favorites.
Schedule – Mar 10-11: 12pm-6pm; Mar 12: 12pm-4pm
Location – Hotel San Jose
Prepare to be transported to nine original series from the streaming service Prime Video including Daisy Jones & The Six, The Boys and The Power. There will be themed food and drink along with semi-permanent tattoos, personalized denim, and photo ops.
If you happen to stop by on either March 11 or 12, don’t forget to head across the street to the Swarm Mini Mart pop-up inside the Austin Motel. This Texaco mini mart has the favorite snacks from the main character, Dre, exclusive merchandise and custom shirt printing.
HBO Max Coffeehouse
Schedule – Mar 11: 10am-7pm; Mar 12: 1pm-4pm
HBO is turning the coffee house into an inclusive location that will showcase content across the cable network and HBO Max brands. The activation is powered by their Human By Orientation and Pa’lante! multicultural marketing initiatives, which elevate and celebrate both the LGBTQIA+ and Latinx communities.
The coffeehouse will hold the events The Last Of Us Fireside Chat with Gabriel Luna and Variety’s Selome Hailu (March 11; 3pm-4pm; RSVP Required), Oh, Stunnin’! Party with Papi Siii and Chorizo Funk (March 11; 9pm-2am; RSVP Required), and The White Lotus Brunch and Fireside Chat with Evan Ross Katz and Variety’s Adam Vary (March 12; 10am-1pm; RSVP Required). The HBO Documentary Filmmaker Roundtable (March 11; 12pm-1pm) and Acoustic Performance with Ambar Lucid (March 11; 5pm-6pm) are open to the public.
Schedule – Mar 11-12: 11am-6pm
Location: The Riley
There is a wide variety of activities over at Roku City. At the Roku City Style Shop, select a new look that features purple accents ideal for exploring this new world. If you’re hungry, reserve a booth via OpenTable at the Roku City Rooftop Diner where you are challenged to detect all the references hidden throughout. Then check out the Best Buy Home Theater Experience where you can sample the latest Roku devices available at Best Buy and new Roku Originals and entertainment on The Roku Channel. Finally, end your visit with a stroll through Roku City to sip on the city’s finest coffee while monster-watching.
Schedule – Mar 11-12: 11am-6pm
Location: Fair Market
Showtime’s Yellowjackets is set to return later this month. To promote the new season, you can sign-up for Camp Yellowjacket. Head into the deep wilderness to an abandoned summer camp. While there, you will prepare for the winter by learning survival skills, foraging for supplies, and braving the cold. You’ll also want to watch your back since you never know which special guests from the cast will be lurking right around the corner.
Schedule – Mar 16: 9am-11pm
Location: The Highball at Alamo Drafthouse South Lamar
For one day only, Apple TV+ invites you to relive the video game playing days of yore with the Tetris Experience. They are setting up a retro arcade celebrating both the game and the upcoming film. There will be limited-edition gifts, gaming, and lots of fun.
SXSW runs from March 10-19 in Austin.