Interview by Christine Thompson

Horton Foote: The Road to Home from director Anne Rapp will have its World premiere at the 2020 virtual Austin Film Festival with a screening on Sunday, October 25. Coincidentally, Foote was the inaugural recipient of AFF’s Distinguished Screenwriter Award in 1995.

The film chronicles the creative journey of acclaimed Texas writer Horton Foote through his own eyes and voice at the end of his life. Foote, who was born and raised in Wharton, Texas, went on to become a Pulitzer Prize winning playwright, the winner of two Academy Awards for screenwriting, an Emmy Award for television writing, and was recipient of the National Medal of Arts among numerous other theatrical and literary prizes. His long and successful 70-year career of writing consisted primarily of stories set in the small town of Harrison, Texas, a fictitious version of Wharton. Foote was known for his delicate yet deeply-layered and profound storytelling— about family, human connections, struggles, resilience and redemption.

Director Anne Rapp met Foote in 1981 when she was script supervisor on his movie Tender Mercies. The two bonded, “not so much over our love of movies or theater, but over our love of basic storytelling, and our similar backgrounds of growing up in small towns in Texas,” Rapp says. They kept up a correspondence for years until Foote left New York and started spending time back in his homestead in Texas. Rapp would visit and “spend hours with him driving around Wharton and hearing all the stories that became the major backdrop of his work.”



First digital screening Sunday, October 25

Post-screening discussion with filmmaker Anne Rapp

After the premiere, the film will be available to watch virtually for the duration of the festival.

Purchase badges, passes & tickets here


I was able to follow Horton around with a camera the last three years of his life,” Rapp said. “Our lifelong friendship allowed me to capture a much more personal and inside view of his life and work, and also capture the connection between his hometown and his successful body of work in more intimate detail.”

Anne Rapp is a writer and a script supervisor who has worked on more than 60 feature films, beginning with Tender Mercies in 1981 and ending with the HBO TV series “Westworld.” She has worked with many acclaimed directors including Jake Kasdan, Billy Bob Thornton, Judd Apatow, Harold Ramis, Ken Kwapis, Jonathan Nolan, Lawrence Kasdan, Sydney Pollack, Robert Benton, Bruce Beresford, Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemekis, David Mamet, Rob Reiner, Bill Forsythe, Ivan Reitman and Tom Hanks. In 1994 she began writing short stories which led to a job writing for Robert Altman who directed two of her original screenplays, Cookie’s Fortune and Dr. T and the Women, and a television episode written for the ABC series “Gun”. The screenplay for Cookie’s Fortune earned Rapp an Independent Spirit Award nomination as well as an Edgar Allen Poe nomination. She has published short stories and essays and has twice served as visiting professor of screenwriting at the Michener Center for Writers, the graduate writing program at University of Texas.

Horton Foote: The Road to Home was produced by Anne Rapp, Joe Dishner, Don Stokes, Jason Wehling, Miguel Alvarez and Mark Birnbaum.

Anne Rapp

Anne Rapp is a writer and a script supervisor in the movie industry who worked on more than 60 feature films, beginning with Tender Mercies in 1981 and ending with the HBO TV series “Westworld.” She has worked with many acclaimed directors including Jake Kasdan, Billy Bob Thornton, Judd Apatow, Harold Ramis, Ken Kwapis,Jonathan Nolan, Lawrence Kasdan, Sydney Pollack, Robert Benton, Bruce Beresford, Steven Spielberg, Robert Zemekis, David Mamet, Rob Reiner, Bill Forsythe, Ivan Reitman and Tom Hanks.

She began writing short stories which led to a job writing for Robert Altman who directed two of her original screenplays, Cookie’s Fortune and Dr. T and the Women and a television episode written for the ABC series “Gun” entitled “All the President’s Women.” The screenplay for Cookie’s Fortune earned Anne an Independent Spirit Award nomination as well as an Edgar Allen Poe nomination. She wrote a television special for CMT, a live Texas music variety show called “Stars over Texas” hosted by Ray Benson of Asleep at the Wheel and featuring Dolly Parton and Vince Gill, and she later teamed with Benson again and wrote the musical “A Ride With Bob” a stage performance about the life and legacy of the western swing great Bob Wills. It ran for eight years. Anne has also written scripts for Alison Eastwood, Whoopi Goldberg and Dana Kuznetkoff, and has a few of her own original scripts in development as well. She has published short stories and essays, and has twice served as visiting professor of screenwriting at the Michener Center for Writers, the graduate writing program at University of Texas. She currently lives in Austin, Texas.

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