It’s that time of year again when the world of Hollywood arrives at your doorstep! The London Film Festival is in its 57th year and has seen the great and the good of the movie industry from all over the world visit to promote their new films. In their second year under new management, the festival has brought one of America’s biggest and greatest stars to the West End, Mr Tom Hanks! But what’s better than one visit from the “Saving Private Ryan” actor? Well, the fact that he’s bringing TWO of his new films with him!
The first is “Captain Phillips”, the harrowing drama directed by British filmmaker Paul Greengrass (“Green Zone”, “The Bourne Supremacy”). Hanks plays the real life Captain Richard Phillips whose boat comes on course with a gang of Somali hijackers. As you would expect from Greengrass, the film will be much more than the sum of its parts and has already been considered as a top contender for awards season.
The second is “Saving Mr. Banks”, the movie portrayal of the friendship that emerges between the great Walt Disney (Hanks) and author P.L. Travers (Emma Thompson), author of the book that would be turned into the beloved classic “Mary Poppins”, as Disney tries to convince the straight-laced writer to make her work into a film. It also is being tipped for Oscar glory, and the film will be bringing the festival to a glorious close, with its European premiere occurring at the LFF on Sunday 20th October.
At the time of going to press, the opening and closing night films are the only announcements, however rumours abound about who may feature in the festival, including a certain former boy wizard (although you didn’t hear that from us!), and of course George Clooney is a regular at the festival so don’t be surprised to see him show up at some point. Best of all, as with every year the public have the opportunity to attend screenings (often hosted by filmmakers and stars), special talks from film industry leaders (which in the past have included Steven Soderbergh, Rachel Weisz and Benicio Del Toro) and even walk the red carpet with the stars!
The festival runs from 9-20 October and you can follow the developments online at www.bfi.org.uk.
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