2007: Knocked Up puts SX on the map as a place to bring adult comedies
SXSW gave a big push to a movie directed by Judd Apatow, who had recently had a hit with his directorial debut, The 40-Year-Old Virgin. This was before Seth Rogen, who had appeared in Apatow's cancelled TV show, Undeclared, was a star, and before Apatow was considered a comedy master. Knocked Up played at the 1,200-seat Paramount Theatre, the festival's largest venue, to a packed crowd. It blew the roof off (I was in attendance for this one, so I promise I'm not mythologizing). The Hollywood get put SXSW on the map as a place to debut and workshop major (mostly R-rated) comedies. Post-2007, SXSW has been the host to films such as Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay, The Ten, Bridesmaids, 21 Jump Street, Trainwreck, and as of this week, Keanu.