BFI Announces 2012 Fest Lineup
LONDON -- The programme for the 56th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express launched under the new creative leadership of BFI’s Head of Exhibition and Festival Director, Clare Stewart, bringing a rich and diverse programme of international films and events from both established and upcoming talent over a 12 day celebration of cinema. The Festival will screen a total of 225 fiction and documentary features, including 12 World Premieres, 12 International Premieres and 35 European Premieres. There will also be screenings of 111 live action and animated shorts. A stellar line-up of directors, cast and crew are expected to take part in career interviews, master classes, and other special events. The 56th BFI London Film Festival will run from 10-21 October 2012.
This year sees the introduction of several changes to the Festival’s format. Now taking place over 12 days, the Festival expands further from its traditional Leicester Square cinemas – Odeon West End, Vue West End, Odeon Leicester Square and Empire – and the BFI Southbank to include four additional new venues – Hackney Picturehouse, Renoir, Everyman Screen on the Green and Rich Mix, which join existing London venues the ICA, Curzon Mayfair, Ritzy Brixton and Ciné Lumière.
The Festival opens with the European Premiere of Tim Burton’s 3D animation FRANKENWEENIE, whilst Mike Newell’s visually stunning adaptation of GREAT EXPECTATIONS, starring Helena Bonham Carter and Ralph Fiennes will close the Festival, with key talent from both films expected to attend. Among the highly anticipated Galas is the American Express Gala World Premiere of CROSSFIRE HURRICANE, a documentary celebrating 50 years of rock legendsThe Rolling Stones who are also expected to attend the Festival. For the first time this year both the Opening Night Gala and the American Express Gala red carpet events and screenings will be screened simultaneously to cinemas across the UK. Other Galas include the American Airlines Gala of Dustin Hoffman’s directorial debut, QUARTET, featuring an outstanding British cast including Dame Maggie Smith, Billy Connolly and Michael Gambon; and Ben Affleck directs and stars in the Accenture Gala presentation of political thriller ARGO which he also produced with George Clooney. British film directors making their mark this year include Paul Andrew Williams with London-based comedy drama, SONG FOR MARION, which screens as The May Fair Hotel Gala and features a sterling cast headed by Vanessa Redgrave, Terence Stamp, Gemma Arterton and Christopher Eccleston; and Roger Michell, whose HYDE PARK ON HUDSON is the Centrepiece Gala supported by the Mayor of London, stars Bill Murray, Laura Linney, Olivia Colman and Olivia Williams and is set on the eve of WWII when the King and Queen of England make a visit to see Franklin D Roosevelt in upstate New York. Nintendo Gala THE SAPPHIRES, is an inspirational Australian musical comedy set in the 60s starring comic man of the moment Chris O’Dowd, who appears alongside Australian Idol star Jessica Mauboy; and THE SESSIONS, is a moving drama, based on a true story with superb performances from John Hawkes, Helen Hunt and William H. Macy.
AWARDS AND COMPETITIONS
The BFI London Film Festival Awards have undergone a significant change this year by introducing competitive sections that are given much more prominence in the Festival campaign and programme. The Best Film Award in partnership with American Express; the Sutherland Award for Best First Feature and the Grierson Award for Best Documentary will now be presented to the winning films from three programme sections: Official Competition, First Feature Competition and Documentary Competition. Each section is open to international and British films and 12 films have been shortlisted for each Competition.
The inaugural Official Competition line-up, recognising inspiring, inventive and distinctive filmmaking, includes four European premieres:
Michael Winterbottom’s EVERYDAY
Sally Potter’s Ginger and Rosa
Deepa Mehta’s Midnight’s Children
Martin McDonagh’s Seven Psychopaths