Lake Travis Film Festival Returns Sept. 15

Lake Travis Film Festival
Ranch Water photo courtesy Lake Travis Film Festival

The Lake Travis Film Festival’s 3rd edition returns September 15-18 in beautiful Hill Country, just west of Austin. The film festival, whose independent personality and approach to the celebration of independent filmmaking is accentuated by its location in Lakeway and Bee Cave, is just outside the city known for independent film and music. LTFF’s Opening Night selection is Laura Lehmus’ dramedy Sweet Disaster. The Closing Night will offer two selections for filmgoers, including Jordan O’Neal’s fantasy Fabletown and Sophie Miler’s drama Ranch Water.

The four-day in-person film festival will once again present a film lineup showcasing films featuring a wide assortment of genres, styles, and topics from the indie film community, both stateside and international. The festival will screen 92 films (8 Narrative Features, 11 Documentary Features, 45 narrative short films, 6 short documentaries, 9 music videos, and 13 student shorts).

2022 Lake Travis Film Festival

LTFF also will feature a pre-festival masterclass with screenwriter Owen Egerton (Mercy Black, Blood Fest), which requires a separate registration. Special events include a pitch party, live script readings, afterparties and an awards brunch. Additional opportunities for film enthusiasts to meet and interact with the filmmakers will be announced daily. Screenings and events occur at various pop-up locations throughout the cities of Bee Cave and Lakeway, Texas. Some of the venues include Hill Country Galleria, High5, ContraCommon, La Quinta Inn & Suites by Wyndham Lakeway, Star Hill Ranch, Goga Yoga, and Bee Cave City Hall.

Lake Travis Film Festival Founder and Executive Director Kat Albert, says, “The third year brings an opportunity to hone into what we best…curating an overall cinematic experience. We do not sell individual tickets. The suburbs don’t have a traditional downtown, so we’ve worked to make our pop-up style festival work with three walkable hubs. Thursday and Friday are in the Oaks at Lakeway. Saturday is in the Hill Country Galleria and Sunday is Texas Film Industry Day at Star Hill Ranch. The festival is young but garnering a reputation as a unique experience for filmmakers, screenwriters, and the local community.”

LTFF Schedule

The Lake Travis Film Festival will open September 15 with an afternoon screening of Michael Stephen Schwarz’s documentary Forever Majestic. The film looks at the complicated story surrounding a treasured Arkansas tourist destination and all the controversy that it sparks after it was struck by a mysterious fire. Following red carpet entrances for the attending filmmakers and talent, LTFF will present Laura Lehmus’ German dramedy Sweet Disaster. The film follows a woman who upon getting unexpectedly pregnant is promptly left by the father of her child as he re-unites with his ex. While she deals with serious health problems caused by the late pregnancy, she tries to get him back with the help of absurd, exaggerated and sometimes absurdly comic actions.

Two films will be featured at the Lake Travis Film Festival’s Closing Night. Austin-based co-writer/director Jordan O’Neal’s Fabletown is inspired by the DC Comics series of “Fables” graphic novels and Telltale Games’ The Wolf Among Us. Set in a New York City that serves as the home for a secret community of exiled folklore and literary characters. O’Neal stars as Sheriff Bigby Wolf, aka the Big Bad Wolf, who teams up with Fabletown Deputy Mayor Snow White on a case involving an exile being victimized by a dark magic that temporarily strips them of the human guise that allows them to move freely around the city. Wolf and Snow White quickly realize they must apprehend the practitioner of this dark magic before they can expose Fabletown to the human world.

Ranch Water

Sophie Miller’s Ranch Water follows three sisters in small town Texas as they return to their family’s ranch for one last weekend. The sisters-only weekend quickly expands to a family and friends gathering while each sister tries to make their version of this last hurrah happen. The sisters and their friends flirt with their ideas of adulthood, as well as each other. Just when everyone thinks they’ve outgrown the fights, the gossiping, and the drinking games, they’re all back in the same house they were in as children and revert to their younger, chaotic selves.

Lake Travis Film Festival returns
Delivering Hope photo courtesy Lake Travis Film Festival

Additional highlights among the narrative films, include Austin-based filmmaker Eric Alan Rousseau’s comedy Lucky Doug about a man who decides to turn his moribund life around and come up with a genius moneymaking idea with a new cat food recipe when he finds out his long-time partner is pregnant. However, he finds out the road to success is littered by more than just cat food alone. William F. Reed’s Austin-set comedy The Good Hearts Club has some semi-autobiographical elements interweaved in its story of a group of co-workers and friends who must team up and work together in order to save Escape Room Austin from going under.

Jordan Orsak’s Delivering Hope chronicles the audacious attempt by ultra-runner Kevin Kline to become the first person in history to run the northernmost 300 miles of Alaska’s dangerous Dalton Highway to raise money for children suffering from cancer, However, Kline’s body shuts down with 100 miles to go, and everything – his life included, is thrown into jeopardy.

Firestorm ’77

Chris Hite and Dennis Ford’s award-winning Firestorm ’77 The True Story of the Honda Canyon Fire recounts the fire fought by a thousand people consisting of professional firemen and military personnel which resulted in four fatalities, sixty-five injuries close to ten thousand acres burned and significant damage to the military installation located there. The Air Force declared it a victory, a battle won by its brave Airmen. However, those who were there will tell you a different story. As part of the screening presentation, Travis County Fire Chief Robert Abbott will lead the post screening conversation about the film.

Jim Bernfield’s festival hit, Me To Play takes us backstage and onstage as two professional actors with Parkinson’s disease put up an Off-Broadway production of Samuel Beckett’s “Endgame.” Mike Markwardt’s The Birth & History of Western Swing offers a comprehensive and entertaining look at Western Swing’s origins in Fort Worth and legacy in the music landscape.

To purchase festival passes or to find more information about the Lake Travis Film Festival, please visit

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Jo Ann Holt
Jo Ann Holt is an award-winning journalist with 40+ years of experience as a writer and editor. She loves live performances, from country music concerts to Broadway musicals to community theatre productions. Holt also enjoys art and cultural festivals, and good food and wine. She’s toured Amsterdam, London, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas, and various cities in Mexico but looks forward to visiting even more countries. She has traveled by boat, plane, and train, but especially likes taking long road trips across the U.S. with her husband, retired history professor Durhl Caussey. They enjoy meeting friendly people, learning about different cultures, and visiting historic sites wherever they go.