South by Southwest is bringing audiences one step closer to Us.
The festival announced Tuesday that Jordan Peele’s directorial follow-up to his Oscar-winning thriller Get Out will open the annual event’s 26th edition with a world-premiere screening on March 8 in Austin, TX.
Us follows a horrific holiday retreat for the Wilson family, as matriarch Adelaide (Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o) and her partner Gabe (Winston Duke) attempt to protect their children from violent attacks mounted by a group of shadowy strangers cloaked in red clothing — all of whom turn out to be the family’s doppelgängers, known in the film as The Tethered.
“I think the main idea that went into writing this film is that we’re our own worst enemy, and that idea created this monster, The Tethered. I wanted to forge this new mythology that explored our duality and the duality of the characters,” Peele told EW of the film’s inspiration. “To the actors, I knew this was the ultimate fun because who doesn’t want to play two roles in a movie; when you’re tired in one, you get to jump into the other. But I think what was a fun challenge for actors, was finding the connections between the characters and their counterparts.”
Peele previously found success on the festival circuit after debuting Get Out at Sundance ahead of scoring four Oscar nominations (including a win for Best Original Screenplay) at the following year’s Academy Awards ceremony.
Last year, John Krasinski and Emily Blunt launched SXSW with their apocalyptic thriller A Quiet Place, which went on to earn critical raves and substantial buzz on the 2018-19 awards season circuit with major precursor nominations from the Producers Guild of America and the Screen Actors Guild.
The SXSW Film Festival will release its full feature slate on Wednesday, Jan. 16, save for its Midnighters and Festival Favorites sections, which — along with Shorts, Episodic Pilot Competition, Virtual Cinema, Music Videos and Title Sequence Competition programs — will be announced on Wednesday, Feb. 6.
SXSW’s 2019 edition runs March 8-17, while Us hits theaters on March 22. For more information on SXSW, head to the festival’s website here.