Programme for the 60th BFI London Film Festival announced

01 Sep 2016

3 mins
A United Kingdom
A United Kingdom

The British Film Institute (BFI) today announced the full programme for the 60th BFI London Film Festival (LFF), which will take place between October 5 - 16, and it's a programme bursting with some of the most exciting filmmaking talent from across the globe.

This year's LFF will screen a total of 193 fiction and 52 documentary features, including 18 World Premieres, 8 International Premieres, and 39 European Premieres. There will also be screenings of 144 short films, taking in everything from documentary, live action and animated works. A stellar line-up of directors, cast and crew are expected to take part in career interviews, Q&As, and screen and industry talks.

Always an event to look out for is the LFF's Opening Gala, which will this year feature the European Premiere of Amma Asante's A United Kingdom - a film that we're hugely excited about. We're particularly delighted to see the film selected as this year's opening gala, as we'll be complementing the film's release with a brand new resource a little later in the year.

A United Kingdom stars David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike, and tells the true story of Seretse Khama, King of Bechuanaland (modern Botswana), and Ruth Williams, the London office worker he married in 1947, in the face of fierce opposition from their families and the British and South African governments. We're delighted to see director Amma Asante - a previous winner of the Festival's UK Film Talent Award - return to the Festival for a second time.

This year's LFF includes an agenda-setting Symposium event that heralds the BFI's Black Star project - something we're complementing with our own Black Star strand at this year's Into Film Festival. BFI Black Star promises to be the UK's biggest ever season of film and television dedicated to celebrating the range, versatility and power of black actors.

Some of the other biggest films that catch the eye in this year's programme include:

  • Lion, which stars BAFTA nominee Dev Patel as a young Indian man haunted by memories of his childhood, when as a 5-year-old, a wrong train saw him separated from his parents, and adopted by an Australian family.
  • A Monster Calls, based on the hugely popular book by Patrick Ness, and directed by J.A. Bayona, which sees a young boy's vast imagination enabling him to see wonder beyond his tough circumstances.
  • La La Land, a gorgeous looking new musical from Damien Chazelle, the acclaimed director of Whiplash, which combines the charm of golden era of Hollywood musicals with the visual flair of French cinema.
  • Arrival, an emotionally arresting and visually inventive science fiction movie, based on the award-winning Story of Your Life by Ted Chiang.
  • Ethel & Ernest, based on Raymond Briggs' autobiographical book, is a lovely animated feature that's told in a series of captivating vignettes about a couple living with their son in 1940's London.

There will also be a host of new films for younger viewers, including Trolls, DreamWorks' vivid, joyously choreographed musical animation, featuring an all-star voice cast led by Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake; The Eagle Huntress, an inspiring documentary that follows a remarkable 13-year-old girl from the Altai Mountains who refuses to conform to gender norms and is determined to follow in her father's footsteps as an eagle hunter; and Phantom Boy, the latest animation from A Cat in Paris Oscar-nominated directors Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol, which focuses on a sick boy who discovers that he has a superpower...

And don't forget that our very own Into Film Festival is on the horizon! Taking place between November 9 - 25, bookings go live on September 5 for club leaders, and on September 6 for everyone else.

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