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The White House Here’s what and who you’ll see at South by South Lawn

Here’s what — and who — you’ll see at South by South Lawn:

Earlier this year, President Obama stopped by South by Southwest ® to issue a challenge to creative thinkers, innovators, and entrepreneurs across the country:

“We are at a moment in history where technology, globalization, our economy are changing so fast,” he said. “How can we start coming up with new platforms, new ideas, new approaches across disciplines and across skill sets to solve some of the big problems that we’re facing today?”

On Monday, October 3, President Obama is bringing the creative thinkers and innovators who work at the cutting-edge of the changing world we live in to help answer that question.

From filmmakers and artists to entrepreneurs and public leaders, the White House will host inspiring and effective people who are dedicated to change to discuss how we can leverage our newest technologies to tackle our toughest challenges.

It’s called South by South Lawn — and here’s a taste of what you can expect to see.


President Obama in Conversation with Leonardo DiCaprio and Dr. Katharine Hayhoe


President Obama will join a conversation with Academy Award-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio and climate scientist Dr. Katharine Hayhoe about the importance of protecting the one planet we’ve got for future generations.

Following the conversation, attendees will watch the domestic premiere of DiCaprio’s new climate documentary film Before the Flood presented by National Geographic in a first-of-its-kind film screening on the South Lawn of the White House.


SXSL presents The White House Student Film Festival


On Sunday, October 2, the American Film Institute (AFI) will welcome the young artists of the 3rd Annual White House Student Film Festival with a day to premiere some of their work. Students in grades K-12 submitted more than 700 short films on this year’s theme: The World I Want to Live In. Some of these aspiring filmmakers from around the nation will be joined by professional artists who work behind and in front of the camera. Special guests will include Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer, Executive Producers Dan Cohen and Shawn Levy, and President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities member Alfre Woodard.



Learn firsthand what it’s like to be locked up in solitary confinement. This virtual reality experience places the viewer inside a 6-foot by 9-foot cell with little more than a bed and toilet. People can experience the psychological impacts of confinement, like blurred vision, hallucinations, and a sense of floating that may occur after long-term sensory deprivation. The Guardian used game engine technology and The Mill worked from first-person accounts of cell design and spatial audio capture to create this groundbreaking and innovative documentary.

And don’t miss special musical performances by Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, the Lumineers, DJ Beverly Bond, and more!

Get all the details here to learn how you can tune in and participate in this one-of-a-kind event at the White House.

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