‘MacGruber,’ ‘Kick-Ass,’ James Franco’s Directorial Debut Highlight South By Southwest Film Festival Lineup

Most people (rightfully) associate the annual South by Southwest with music, but film has been an integral component of the festivities since 1994. This year’s event kicks off in March, with the film portion running from March 12 through March 20. And the lineup is now officially announced.

There are a smattering of Sundance 2010 favorites here, including the Jonah Hill-starring comedy “Cyrus,” the Bill Murray/Robert Duvall/Lucas Black-led indie “Get Low” and the Kristen Stewart/Dakota Fanning-led music biopic “The Runaways.” There are also a bunch of world premieres, including several which are sure to be popular across a wide range of viewers. The most noteworthy of those is probably the documentary “Saturday Night,” which marks the directorial debut for former “Spider-Man” star and recent “General Hospital” guest James Franco.” More details after the break.

“Saturday Night” offers a behind-the-scenes look at the weekly sketch comedy TV series “Saturday Night Live.” Franco has hosted the show twice now, and apparently the experience left enough of an impact that he felt it would be worthwhile to document how the show comes together each week. “30 Rock” offers much the same thing, albeit in a fictional context, but Franco’s look will apparently boast “unprecedented access to the behind the scenes process of the writers, actors and producers.”

Also of note are two of the year’s more high-profile releases, “MacGruber” and “Kick-Ass.” The former is actually a “Saturday Night Live” spin-off, from the Will Forte character who spoofs classic ’80s TV action hero MacGyver. “Kick-Ass” offers an unusual twist on the superhero genre, following a comic book geek who is inspired to strike out as a costumed crime fighter himself.

This is just a sampling of the lineup, which also includes Tim Blake Nelson’s latest effort as a director, the Ed Norton-starring “Leaves of Grass” and the latest from “Amelie” director Jean-Pierre Jeunet, “Micmacs.” Head over to the SxSW film festival page for the full list.

Which SxSW movie are you most looking forward to?