Today marks the first day of South by Southwest, a festival where hipsters, tech-nerds and "though"leaders" all come together to celebrate creativity and capitalism. Known as SXSW, the festival consist of three main sections, music, film and interactive. Here are 11 facts about the festival that your hip self might not have known.
1. The Festival's Name Came From An Alfred Hitchcock Movie
Though the film section of the festival wasn't added until 1994, SXSW's name was actually inspired by the movie North by Northwest.
2. The People Who Go to SXSW Are in the Cool Kids Crowd
The average SWSW attendee has 28% more Facebook friends than the average user
3. McDonald's Got into Some Water Over SXSW
McDonald's with its new kick of kale-infused everything, is clearly trying to recreate itself to be hip and millennial friendly. This may have been the reason the company asked rising band Ex Cops to play at the McDonald's SXSW showcase for free. The Ex Cops response was so spot on that McDonald's later reversed policy, deciding to pay bands for performing at the showcase.
4. You Can Thank SXSW for Introducing You to the Term Mumblecore
You know those low-budget movies about aimless twenty or thirty-somethings talking in what seems to be unscripted dialogue? You can thank sound editor Eric Masunaga for giving that particular genre a name. He coined the term in an interview at the 2005 festival.
5. There's a Reason Why SXSW Is So Big on Twitter
In 2007, a small tech company called Twitter launched at SXSW. In 2009, Foursquare was also launched at SXSW.
6. SXSW Inspired Similar Festivals Across the Country
North by Northwest takes place in Portland and North by Northeast takes place in Toronto. West by Southwest takes place in Tucson.
7. Judd Apatow Discovered Lena Dunham at SXSW
A festival fixture at SXSW, Judd Apatow was immediately impressed when he saw Lena Dunham's film Tiny Furniture screen at the film portion of the festival. "I emailed her after I saw it and said, 'Hey, if you ever want to kick anything around, let me know,'" Apatow told the Huffington Post in a 2012 interview. They later went on to create a little-known show called Girls.
8. SXSW Attendees Are Unfiltered
In 2012, SXSW goers averaged 4.7 profane tweets per minute.
9. John Mayer Got His Start At SXSW
After performing at the 2000 festival, Mayer was signed to his first record label, Aware Records.
10. It's The Largest Game In Town
The festival is the highest revenue-producing event for the Austin economy.
11. This Year Will Be Record-Breaking
145 feature films will be screened this year, an all-time high for the festival.