The 61st BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express® announced its full programme, with a sublime and diverse selection of 242 feature films during 12 days of celebration.
For its 61st year, the Festival will host 28 World Premieres, 9 International Premieres and 34 European Premieres and will welcome a stellar line up of cast and crew for many of the films. Among its 242 feature films, there will be 46 documentaries, 6 animations, 14 archive restorations and 16 artists’ moving image features. The programme also includes 128 short films, and 67 countries are represented across short film and features.
For those who discover the festival, each evening of the Festival sees a Headline Gala presentation at Odeon Leicester Square. Films in Official Competition and Strand Galas are once again presented at the 820-seat Embankment Garden Cinema following a successful inaugural year in 2016.
Alongside the Galas, Special Presentations and films in Competitions, the Festival will show a thrilling range of new cinema in sections Love, Debate, Laugh, Dare, Thrill, Cult, Journey, Experimenta and Family – which provide pathways for audiences to navigate the programme. In 2017, the LFF presents a new strand, Create, featuring films that celebrate artistic practice in all its channels and forms the electricity of the creative process, reflecting London’s position as one of the world’s leading creative cities.
This year’s Screen talks will welcome Julian Rosefeldt & Cate Blanchett, David Fincher, Jake Gyllenhaal, Annette Benning, Lucrecia Martel, Demis Hassabis, Nitin Sawhney, Johan Knattrup Jensen, Ian McEwan and Takashi Miike.
The venues of the BFI Film Festival: the West End cinemas – Vue Leicester Square and the iconic Odeon Leicester Square; central London venues – BFI Southbank, BFI IMAX, Picturehouse Central, the ICA, Curzon Mayfair, Curzon Soho, Empire Haymarket, Prince Charles Cinema and Ciné Lumière; and local cinemas – Hackney Picturehouse , Rich Mix in Shoreditch and Curzon Chelsea. Special screenings will also be held at the National Gallery and the Barbican, and several key events will also be cinecasted to cinema venues around the UK.
OPENING & CLOSING NIGHT GALAS
- OPENING – BREATHE – European Premiere – directorial debut of Andy Serkis – with Andrew Garfield Claire Foy
- CLOSING – THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING, MISSOURI – Vest scenario at Venizia 2017 – Martin McDonagh – Academy Award® winner Frances McDormand, Academy Award® nominee Woody Harrelson.
- BATTLE OF THE SEXES – The American Express Gala – European Premiere – Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton – Emma Stone, Steve Carell.
- CALL ME BY YOUR NAME – the Mayor of London’s Gala – Luca Guadagnino – Timothée Chalamet, Armie Hammer.
- DOWNSIZING – The BFI Patrons’ Gala – Alexander Payne – Matt Damon, Kristen Wiig.
- FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL – The May Fair Hotel Gala – European Premiere – Paul McGuigan – Annette Bening, Jamie Bell.
- JOURNEY’S END – European Premiere – Saul Dibb – Sam Claflin, Asa Butterfield.
- THE KILLING OF A SACRED DEER – Yorgos Lanthimos – Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman.
- LAST FLAG FLYING – International Premiere – Richard Linklater – Steve Carell, Bryan Cranston and Laurence Fishburne.
- MUDBOUND – the Royal Bank of Canada Gala – European Premiere – Dees Rees – Garrett Hedlund, Jason Mitchell, Carey Mulligan.
- THE SHAPE OF WATER – the American Airlines Gala – Golden Lion at Venezia 2017 – Guillermo del Toro – Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon.
- YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE – Best actor in Cannes Film Festival 2017 – Lynne Ramsay – Joaquin Phoenix.
STRAND AND FESTIVAL GALAS
- The Festival Gala – THE FLORIDA PROJECT – in association with Time Out – Sean Baker
- The Dare Gala – AMANT DOUBLE – François Ozon
- The Family Gala – THE BIG BAD FOX AND OTHER TALES – Benjamin Renner and Patrick Imbert
- The Thrill Gala – BLADE OF THE IMMORTAL – Takashi Miike
- The Debate Gala – FOXTROT – Samuel Maoz
- The Laugh Gala – THE MEYEROWITZ STORIES (NEW AND SELECTED) – Noah Baumbach – in association with Empire
- The Love Gala – ON CHESIL BEACH – Dominic Cooke
- The Create Gala – REDOUBTABLE – Michel Hazanavicius
- The Archive Gala – SHIRAZ: A ROMANCE OF INDIA
- The Cult Gala – THELMA – Joachim Trier
- The Journey Gala – WONDERSTRUCK – Todd Haynes
Eight Special Presentations shine the spotlight on new work from major directors:
- DARK RIVER – European Premiere – Clio Barnard
- HAPPY END – Michael Haneke
- THE PARTY – Sally Potter
- ZAMA – Lucretia Martel – presented in association with Sight & Sound
- A FANTASTIC WOMAN – Sebastián Lelio – BFI Flare Special Presentation.
- THE FINAL YEAR – European Premiere – Greg Barker – The Documentary Special Presentation
- LOOKING FOR OUM KULTHUM – Shirin Neshat – the Experimenta Special Presentation.
- MINDHUNTER – David Fincher – First LFF Connects Special Presentation – European Premiere of the first two episodes.
The Official Competition, recognising inspiring, inventive and distinctive filmmaking, includes the following shortlisted titles:
- Robin Campillo, 120 BPM (BEATS PER MINUTE)
- Vivian Qu, ANGELS WEAR WHITE
- Majid Majidi, BEYOND THE CLOUDS (World Premiere)
- Nora Twomey, THE BREADWINNER (European Premiere)
- Juliana Rojas, Marco Dutra, GOOD MANNERS
- Xavier Beauvois, THE GUARDIANS (European Premiere)
- Andrew Haigh, LEAN ON PETE
- Andrey Zvyagintsev, LOVELESS
- Azazel Jacobs, THE LOVERS (European Premiere)
- Warwick Thornton, SWEET COUNTRY
- Cory Finley, THOROUGHBRED (International Premiere)
- Annemarie Jacir, WAJIB
FIRST FEATURE COMPETITION
Titles in consideration for the Sutherland Award in the First Feature Competition recognising an original and imaginative directorial debut are:
- Daniel Kokotajlo, APOSTASY
- Léa Mysius, AVA
- Michael Pearce, BEAST (European Premiere)
- Ofir Raul Graizer, THE CAKEMAKER
- Gilles Coulier, CARGO
- Kogonada, COLUMBUS
- Rungano Nyoni, I AM NOT A WITCH
- Léonor Serraille, JEUNE FEMME
- Ana Asensio, MOST BEAUTIFUL ISLAND
- Carla Simón, SUMMER 1993
- Hlynur Pálmason, WINTER BROTHERS
- John Trengove, THE WOUND
There are also the documentary and Short awards competition.
STRANDS: HIGHLIGHTS TO FOLLOW
- ANCHOR AND HOPE – World Premiere – Carlos Marques-Marcet
- HOW TO TALK TO GIRLS AT PARTIES – John Cameron Mitchell
- JOURNEYMAN – World Premiere – Paddy Considine
- GOING WEST – World Premiere – Henrik Martin Dahlsbakken
- STRONGER – David Gordon Green
- THE CLIMB – World Premiere – Michael Woodward
- THE FORGIVEN – World Premiere – Roland Joffé
- THE VENERABLE W. – Barbet Schroeder
- FUNNY COW – World Premiere – Adrian Shergold
- INGRID GOES WEST – Matt Spicer
- PERSON TO PERSON – Dustin Guy Defa
- QUALITY TIME – Daan Bakker
- WORD OF GOD – Henrik Ruben Genz
- BEACH RATS – Eliza Hittman
- GIANT – Jon Garaño and Aitor Arregi
- THE HUNGRY – European Premiere – Bornila Chatterjee
- MADEMOISELLE PARADIS – Barbara Albert
- SO HELP ME GOD – Jean Libon and Yves Hinant
- BAD GENIUS – European Premiere – Nattawut Poonpiriya
- THE BRAWLER – European Premiere – Anurag Kashyap
- GEMINI – Aaron Katz
- SMALL TOWN CRIME – European Premiere – Ian Nelms and Eshom Nelms
- WRATH OF SILENCE – International Premiere – Xin Yukun
- BRAWL IN CELL BLOCK 99 – S. Craig Zahler
- THE CURED – David Freyne
- GHOST STORIES – World Premiere – Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman
- MY FRIEND DAHMER – Marc Meyers
- THE JOURNEY – Mohamed Jabarah Al-Daradji
- SHEIKH JACKSON – European Premiere – Amr Salama
- THE WHITE GIRL – World Premiere – Jenny Suen
- THE BALLAD OF SHIRLEY COLLINS – World Premiere – Rob Curry and Tim Plester
- LOVING VINCENT – broadcast live from the National Gallery to cinemas nationwide
- MANIFESTO – Julian RosefeldtThe BFI London Film Festival will start on the 4th of October until the 15th.