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The 64th BFI London Film Festival announces the full 2020 programme

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The 64th BFI London Film Festival (LFF) in partnership with American Express today announced the full programme of its reimagined and innovative new 2020 offering that will be delivered both virtually and via physical screenings. Over the twelve days from 7 – 18th October, the Festival will be its most accessible ever, presenting over 50 Virtual Premieres and a selection of highly-anticipated new feature film previews at BFI Southbank as well as in cinemas across the UK, offering audiences a unique chance to engage with the Festival in different ways.

With work from more than 40 countries, the programme includes fiction, documentary, animation, artists’ moving image, short film, restored classics from the world’s archives as well as previews of several episodic/series-based works made for the small screen.

Every screening will be presented with an intro or Q&A from filmmakers and programmers.  The Festival also includes many ways audiences can engage with the Festival for free: LFF Opening screenings of Mangrove in cinemas across the UK;  selected feature films on BFI Player; an international programme of short films featuring established and breakthrough film talents; Screen Talks with major filmmakers and actors, as well as all online salons and Q&As across the Festival which will give audiences an opportunity to delve more deeply into themes and talking points emerging from the programme.  The recently announced LFF Expanded strand of XR and Immersive Art will also be free to access both virtually and at BFI Southbank for the duration of the Festival.

All films are geo-blocked to the UK while all the Festival talks and LFF Expanded are available to experience for free from anywhere in the world.

As is befitting this audience-facing and innovative edition, this year the Festival Awards are in the hands of the audience, who will take the place of the Festival’s Official Jury. Viewers engaging with the Festival online will be invited to vote on Virtual LFF Audience Awards in four categories: Best Fiction Feature, Best Documentary Feature, Best Short Film, and Best XR.  The winners will be announced in a live online ceremony on the final weekend of the Festival. We will also announce The IWC Schaffhausen Filmmaker Bursary Award in association with the BFI winner at the Awards Ceremony. The Bursary benefits an outstanding first or second-time British writer, director, or writer/director. The recipient of the award will receive £50,000, which is the most significant of its kind in the UK film industry and awarded annually.

Ben Roberts, CEO, BFI said: “Although it’s been born out of crisis, this year’s edition of the LFF will be our most accessible yet. Thanks to the many talented and dedicated teams across the BFI, and the encouragement of our partners and industry colleagues – we have shaped a festival that suggests a future for bringing filmmakers and film lovers together.”

Tricia Tuttle, BFI London Film Festival Director said: This has been such a period of uncertainty and change across the industry and when we embarked on a radical new plans for our 2020 edition, we stepped into unknown territory. But we’ve been so encouraged by the adventurousness of filmmakers and rights holders, the unwavering support of our collaborators and the spirit of unity and experimentation. And I feel like we have accelerated so many of our longer term plans in just a few months – especially our desire to offer audiences across the UK greater access to the LFF. We all want to be back in cinemas, seeing films on the big screen, together, immersed. But we also want to keep seeing new cinematic storytelling from all parts of the world, hearing different voices and perspectives; this version of LFF delivers on both of those aims. I could not be prouder to work with so many amazing professionals, artists and creative businesses to make these absolutely cracking new films, series, talks and XR programmes available to audiences. ”

FEATURE FILM

Alphabetical list of features screening in the 64th BFI London Film Festival (programme details below)

V = Virtual Premiere / C = in cinemas across the UK

All contemporary films screening as Virtual Premieres are eligible for Virtual LFF Audience Awards for Best Film or Best Documentary.

 

  • 180° RULE | Farnoosh Samadi | Iran | 2020 | Debate | V
  • 200 METERS | Ameen Nayfeh | Palestine | 2020 | Debate | V
  • A COMMON CRIME Francisco Márquez | Argentina, Brazil, Switzerland 2020 | Dare | V
  • A DAY-OFF OF KASUMI ARIMURA | d. Hirokazu Kore-eda | w. Sakura Higa | Japan 2020 |Journey (Series) | V
  • AFRICAN APOCALYPSE | Rob Lemkin | UK 2020 | Debate | V
  • AFTER LOVE | Aleem Khan | UK 2020 | Love | V + C
  • AMMONITE | Francis LeeUK 2020 | Closing Film | C
  • ANOTHER ROUND | Thomas VinterbergDenmark 2020 | Journey | V + C
  • BAD TALES | Fabio D’Innocenzo, Damiano D’Innocenzo Italy 2020 | Dare | V
  • BLOODY NOSE, EMPTY POCKET Bill Ross IV, Turner Ross USA 2020 | Journey | V
  • THE CHEATERS Paulette McDonagh | Australia 1929 | Treasures | V
  • THE CHESS GAME OF THE WIND | Mohammad Reza Aslani Iran 1976 | Treasures | V
  • CICADA | Matt Fifer and Kieran Mulcare  | USA 2020 | Love | V
  • DAYS | Tsai Ming-Liang | Taiwan 2020 | Love | V*
  • DAVID BYRNE’S AMERICAN UTOPIA | Spike Lee | USA 2020 | Create | V + C
  • DELIA DERBYSHIRE: THE MYTHS AND LEGENDARY TAPES | Caroline Catz | UK 2020 | Create | V
  • THE DISCIPLE | Chaitanya Tamhane | India 2020             | Create | V
  • FAREWELL AMOR | Ekwa Msangi | USA 2020 | Love | V
  • FRIENDSHIP’S DEATH | Peter Wollen | UK 1987 | Treasures | V
  • GENUS PAN | Lav Diaz Philippines 2020 | Journey | V
  • GOLD FOR DOGS | Anna Cazenave Cambet | France 2020 | Journey | V
  • HERSELF | Phyllida Lloyd | UK 2020 | Love | V + C
  • HONEYMOOD | Talya Lavie | Israel 2020 | Laugh | V
  • I AM SAMUEL | Pete Murimi | Kenya 2020 | Journey | V
  • IDENTIFYING FEATURES | Fernanda Valadez | Mexico-Spain 2020 | Journey | V
  • IF IT WERE LOVE | Patric Chiha | France 2020 | Love | V
  • INDUSTRY | d. Lena Dunham, Tinge Krishnan, Ed Lilly | w. Mickey Down, Konrad Kay | UK 2020 | Journey (Series) | V
  • THE INTRUDER | Natalia Meta | Argentina-Mexico 2020 | Dare | V
  • KAJILLIONAIRE | Miranda July | USA 2020 | Laugh | V
  • LIMBO  | Ben Sharrock | UK 2020 | Journey | V
  • MANGROVE | Steve McQueen | UK 2020 | Opening Film (Series) | C
  • MOGUL MOWGLI | Bassam Tariq | UK 2020 | Dare | V + C
  • NEVER GONNA SNOW AGAIN | Małgorzata Szumowska, Michał Englert | Poland-Germany | Laugh | V
  • NEW ORDER | Michel Franco | Mexico 2020 | Dare | V
  • NOMADLAND | Chloé Zhao | USA 2020 | Journey | C
  • NOTTURNO | Gianfranco Rosi | Italy-Germany-France 2020 | Journey | V
  • ONE MAN AND HIS SHOES | Yemi Bamiro | UK 2020 | Debate | V
  • THE PAINTER AND THE THIEF | Benjamin Ree | Norway 2020 | Create | V
  • POSSESSOR | Brandon Cronenberg | Canada-UK 2020 | Cult | V
  • THE REASON I JUMP | Jerry Rothwell | UK 2020 | V
  • RELIC | Natalie Erika James | Australia-USA 2020 | Cult | V
  • ROSE | Jennifer Sheridan | UK 2020 | Cult | V
  • THE SALT IN OUR WATERS | Rezwan Shahriar Sumit | Bangladesh-France 2020| Journey | V
  • SHADOW COUNTRY | Bohdan Sláma | Czech Republic 2020 | Debate | V
  • SHIRLEY | Josephine Decker | USA 2020 | Dare | V + C
  • SIBERIA | Abel Ferrara | Italy-Germany-Mexico 2020 | Dare | V
  • SOUL | Pete Docter, Kemp Powers | USA 2020 | Family | C
  • SOUND FOR THE FUTURE | Matt Hulse | UK-China 2020 | Experimenta | V
  • STRAY   | Elizabeth Lo | USA 2020 | Journey | V
  • STRIDING INTO THE WIND | Wei Shujun | China 2020 | Create | V
  • SUPERNOVA | Harry Macqueen | UK 2020 | Love | V + C
  • THIS IS MY DESIRE (EYIMOFE) | Arie Esiri, Chuko Esiri | Nigeria 2019 | V
  • TIME | Garrett Bradley | USA 2020 | Debate | V + C
  • ULTRAVIOLENCE | Ken Fero | UK 2020 | Debate | V
  • UNDINE | Christian Petzold | Germany 2020 | V + C
  • WILDFIRE | Cathy Brady | UK-Ireland 2020 | Dare | V
  • WOLFWALKERS | Tomm Moore, Ross Stewart | Ireland-Luxembourg-France 2020 |Family | V
  • ZANKA CONTACT | Ismaël El Iraki | France-Morocco-Belgium 2020 | Create | V

*Days will have a single cinema screenings at ICA and BFI Southbank

 

OPENING & CLOSING FILM
As previously announced, this year’s Opening Film will be MANGROVE, directed by the multi-award-winning visual artist and filmmaker Steve McQueen, starring Letitia Wright, Shaun Parkes and Malachi Kirby. The film will receive its European Premiere on Wednesday 7th October and will screen for free to audiences at cinemas in cities across the UK as part of a unique partnership between the LFF, the BBC and selected independent cinemas. Marking 50 years since the events depicted in the film, MANGROVE tells the true story of the Mangrove 9, the group of Black activists who clashed with London police during a protest march in 1970 and their highly publicised trial that followed. The film is part of Small Axe, a drama anthology which comprises five original films created by Steve McQueen for BBC One.

The Festival closes with Francis Lee’s biopic AMMONITE, a film that is every bit as immersive, tactile and emotionally powerful as Francis Lee’s debut God’s Own Country, aided by a devastating performance by Kate Winslet and supported brilliantly by Saoirse Ronan. A fictionalised account of the life of the 19th century paleontologist Mary Anning, Winslet plays the pioneering scientist with Ronan as the gentlewoman who falls in love with her while staying in Mary’s beloved Lyme Regis. The film will receive its UK premiere on Saturday 17th October and will be available to UK audiences at cinemas across the UK who will also enjoy a virtual introduction from Lee and key cast.

The full programme is available here.

 

LFF EXPANDED
For the first time, the Festival is delighted to bring audiences LFF Expanded: a new dedicated strand of XR and Immersive Art.

 

All XR projects in LFF Expanded are eligible for the Virtual LFF Audience Award for Best XR.

Using cinema as a jumping off point, LFF Expanded will be an expansive space for programming, featuring Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Mixed Reality and including live immersive performance. LFF Expanded will feature bold, innovative creators from around the world who use a range of creative techniques to ensure audiences are not in front a work of art, a film or a performance, but in the middle of it.

Alphabetical list of works screening in LFF Expanded as part of 64th BFI London Film Festival.

  • Acqua Alta – Crossing the Mirror | Adrien M & Claire B | France 2019 | Only accessible on-site at BFI Southbank
  • AGENCE | Pietro Gagliano | Canada 2020
  • All Kinds of Limbo | Toby Coffey | UK 2019
  • DAZZLE: SOLO | Bruno Martelli | UK 2020
  • Eldfell | Alyssa T. Mello | UK 2020
  • Gimme One | Harry Silverlock, Monty FitzGerald | UK 2020
  • Icarus | Michel Lemieux | Canada 2020
  • Ilios | Marcel Karnapke, Mika Johnson | Germany 2020
  • Madrid Noir | James A. Castillo | France 2019
  • Missing Pictures – Birds of Prey | Clément Deneux | France 2019
  • Proper Motion | Mike Robbins | Germany 2020
  • To Miss The Ending | Anna West, David Callanan | UK 2020
  • Common Ground – 360 Video Version | Darren Emerson | UK 2019
  • ODYSSEY 1.4.9 | François Vautier | France 2019
  • People2People – Sarah | Fabian Vetter | Germany/Palestine/Israel 2020
  • People2People -Yaakov | Fabian Vetter | Germany Palestine/Israel 2020
  • Recoding Entropia | François Vautier | France 2020
  • The Martha Street Experience | Peter Collis | UK 2020
  • Virtual (Black) Reality: Volume 2 – Babs | Baff Akoto | UK 2020
  • Virtual (Black) Reality: Volume 2 – Bella | Baff Akoto | UK 2020
  • Virtual (Black) Reality: Volume 2 – ShaNon | Baff Akoto | UK 2020
  • Virtual (Black) Reality: Volume 2 – Kwesi | Baff Akoto | UK 2020

 

SHORT FILM
All short films screening online are eligible for the Virtual LFF Audience Award for Best Short Film. This year’s programme will screen an exciting range of 36 shorts grouped within the following themes:

Kids Will Be Kids – Children worldwide can be unruly, wild and unmanageable. This is all part of growing up, even if it sometimes means going beyond the limits.

My Time to Shine – Whether or not the world is a kind and accepting place, these films present grand visions of strength and self-discovery and on life’s rocky road, there is something to be said for being certain about the person you are.

Secrets & Lies – Less peaks, more troughs. Whether it’s secrets or lies, these very personal stories range from the everyday to the far out, with characters who exude resilience and self-determination.

This is the Rhythm of My Life – Music, film, faith, costumes and colour lift our spirits and allow us to dream. Strip them away and life might be simpler, but it’s the strength we find in these things that brings us together.

UK Focus – A chance to see some of the best in UK filmmaking talent, with a varied and diverse selection of stories. Crossing genres and styles, from horror and comedy to animation and powerful drama, this is a vital snapshot of new British filmmaking that’s not to be missed.

We Built A World – In a year that has faced many challenges, we look to the perspectives of those we often do not see. In doing so we hold a mirror up to the world we live in. These films offer a moment to reflect and question, as well as engage with communities and their stories.       

Alphabetical list short films screening as part of the 64th BFI London Film Festival:

  • #FOLLOWME | Anna Bruun Nørager |UK 2020
  • A HORSE HAS MORE BLOOD THAN A HUMAN | Abolfazl Talooni |UK-Iran 2020
  • AN EVERYDAY ACT | Gavin Scott Whitfield |UK 2019
  • ASHO | Jafar Najafi |Iran 2019
  • BECHORA | Maya Armon |Israel-UK 2020
  • BITTER SKY | Joseph Ollman |UK 2019
  • BITTU | Karishma Dube |India-USA 2020
  • BUCK | Elegance Bratton, Jovan James |USA 2020
  • CHICKEN | Alana Hicks |Australia 2019
  • DAFA METTI | Tal Amiran |UK 2019
  • DOLAPO IS FINE | Ethosheia Hylton |Scr Joan Iyiola, Chibundu Onuzo
  • DUNGAREES | Abel Rubinstein |UK 2020
  • EXPENSIVE SHIT | Adura Onashile |UK 2020
  • GOOD NIGHT | Anthony Nti |Ghana-Belgium 2019
  • GOOD THANKS, YOU? | Molly Manning Walker |UK 2019
  • GRAMERCY | Jamil McGinnis, Pat Heywood |USA 2019
  • HENET WARD | Morad Mostafa |Egypt 2020
  • HUNGRY JOE | Sam Dawe, Paul Holbrook |UK 2020
  • JAMBO CINEMA | Dawinder Bansal |UK 2020
  • LITTLE PRINCESS | Éric Forestier |France 2020
  • LIZARD | Akinola Davies Jr |UK-Nigeria 2020
  • LOOSE FISH | Francisco Canton, Pato Martinez |Argentina-Morocco-USA 2020
  • MAJORITY | Tessa Hoffe |UK 2019
  • MANDEM | John Ogunmuyiwa |UK 2019
  • MOTHER | Jas Pitt, Kate Stonehill |UK-Brazil 2020
  • MOUNTAIN CAT | Lkhagvadulam Purev-Ochir |Mongolia-UK 2020
  • PANTHERS | Èrika Sánchez Marcos |Spain 2020
  • SALSA | Igor Dimitri |Argentina-Portugal 2020
  • SHAGBANDS | Luna Carmoon |UK 2020
  • SHUTTLECOCK | Tommy Gillard |UK 2019
  • STRAY DOGS COME OUT AT NIGHT | Hamza Bangash |Pakistan-UK 2020
  • SUMMER SHADE | Shira Haimovici |UK-Israel 2020
  • THE NAME OF THE SON | Martina Matzkin |Argentina 2020
  • THE SPARK | Elvire Muñoz |France 2020
  • TWO SINGLE BEDS | William Stefan Smith |UK 2019
  • WITNESS | Ali Asgari |France-Iran 2020
  • WOOD CHILD AND HIDDEN FOREST MOTHER | Stephen Irwin |UK 2020

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