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SXSW ’14 – “The Raid 2” Screening Was Cancelled…But Something Awesome Happened

March 11, 2014

Screen shot 2014-03-11 at 4.08.34 PMThis was my second chance to see “The Raid 2” on the current festival circuit. The first time was it’s premiere at Sundance, which I volunteered at, however, my last day I catch the flu, so I miss the movie. A spur of the moment decision arises weeks later and I decided to hit up SXSW for the first time, and low and behold, “The Raid 2” is screening there! So, what happens? Apparently I’m cursed and no one should come near me, the screening was CANCELED, on account that the subtitles didn’t play.

Before the official cancelation  was announced, writer/director Gareth Evans, and the films lead stars Iko Uwais & Cecep Arif Rahman, came out on stage to do a sort of ‘Apology Q/A’. It was filled with drunken red neck rants from the crowd, die-hard fan questions, and an actual on-stage fight between Iko & Cecep, check out the footage I was lucky enough to capture:

After 30 mins of wondering if the darn movie would play, they officially called it. Most people dispersed, they were bummed, who could blame them? Me, and other fanboys, we stuck around. I traveled down to the front of the theatre, and actually hung out with Gareth, Iko, and Cecep! But, not before bumping into Austin’s favorite movie geek son, Mr. Harry Knowles. Harry brought me into his little group discussion where they were discussing the utter bullshit that is “300: Rise of an Empire”; that was a magical moment.

Anyways, after my Knowles encounter, I ventured down to house front and had the opportunity to listen in on what Gareth had to say about making these movies, not to mention Iko & Cecep were the coolest bunch of cats around, the three men literally hung out for an hour, talkin’ with the fans and takin’ pics with us. Gareth told me, and a few others, in his little ‘house front inner circle’, some nifty tricks he pulled off from the first “Raid” film, how the door frame kill was an inspiration from Peter Jackson’s “Brain Dead” [“Dead Alive”], not to mention, to this day, Gareth still doesn’t understand why “The Raid” was title changed into “The Raid: Redemption”.

Screen shot 2014-03-11 at 4.10.26 PMThat night Gareth made it official announcing that he’s working on “The Raid 3” and we should expect it very soon! As the crowd began to die down, security began to push many of us away, I waited out in the lobby for the three “Raid” stars, for one last encounter. I still had my Audience Award ballot, I already gave the film 5/5. Hey! The first 10 mins alone was insane! Even if I didn’t understand what they said. So, I asked Iko first if he would sign, he was completely giddy to do it, Gareth followed, and soon after the silently-stern Cecep autographed my ballot.

I may have missed out on “The Raid 2” [TWICE] due to bad luck, but that night, I was the luckiest chap around. It was seriously the best night of my movie geek life! I’ll never forget it.

Screen shot 2014-03-11 at 10.39.47 PM

Aaron Shore, is a contributing blogger for the film sites of Hudak on Hollywood & Midnight Reviews.

You can follow Aaron on Twitter @DoubleAAProd

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