The AFI Fest has rounded out its list of Centerpiece Galas and Special Screenings with an impressive list of awards contenders that will include one more big get: Universal’s world premiere November 12th of the gritty and gripping Afghanistan war film Lone Survivor directed by Peter Berg and starring Mark Walhberg in the true story. The film gets a qualifying run in December before going wide January 10th. Getting the prime Friday night slot that was originally announced for the world premiere of Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher before that film was pushed later into 2014, is the Los Angeles premiere of The Weinstein Company’s anticipated August: Osage County, which had a raucous World Premiere screening at the Toronto Film Festival. Finally, the 1987 Best Picture winner, Bertolucci’s The Last Emperor, gets unveiled as another Centerpiece Gala in its new 3D version (do we really need that, Bernardo? I liked it the way it was). Additionally refugees from other fall fests — including Spike Jonze’s Her, Ralph Fiennes’ The Invisible Woman, Jordorowsky’s Dune, Mandela: Long Walk To Freedom, The Past, Philomena and the Donald Rumsfeld docu from Errol Morris, The Unknown Known – will be presented as Special Screenings. The AFI Fest takes place mainly at the Chinese Theatre in Hollywood and runs Nov 7-14 when it closes with Inside Llewyn Davis. Opening night should be special: Disney’s Saving Mr. Banks with its North American premiere in the same theatre where the subject of the film, Mary Poppins, debuted in 1964 and is featured prominently at the end of the movie. Here’s the official release about this morning’s additions:
Los Angeles, CA, October 17, 2013 – The American Film Institute (AFI) today announced additional Centerpiece Galas and Special Screenings – comprised of a World Premiere, award season contenders and highly anticipated independent and international films of the fall – for AFI FEST 2013 presented by Audi.
There will be a red carpet Gala each night of the festival. The additional Centerpiece Galas are AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY (DIR John Wells) on Friday, November 8; THE LAST EMPEROR 3D (DIR Bernardo Bertolucci) on Sunday, November 10; and the World Premiere of LONE SURVIVOR (DIR Peter Berg) on Tuesday, November 12. All Galas will be presented in the historic TCL Chinese Theatre.
AFI FEST’s Special Screenings are HER (DIR Spike Jonze); THE INVISIBLE WOMAN (DIR Ralph Fiennes); JODOROWSKY’S DUNE (DIR Frank Pavich); MANDELA: LONG WALK TO FREEDOM (DIR Justin Chadwick); THE PAST (LE PASSÉ) (DIR Ashar Farhadi); PHILOMENA (DIR Stephen Frears); and THE UNKNOWN KNOWN: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF DONALD RUMSFELD (DIR Errol Morris).
As previously announced, Agnès Varda, considered “the Mother of French New Wave cinema,” will serve as Guest Artistic Director. The North American Premiere of SAVING MR. BANKS (DIR John Lee Hancock) is the Opening Night Gala on Thursday, November 7 and INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS (DIR Ethan Coen, Joel Coen) is the Closing Night Gala on Thursday, November 14. Previously announced Centerpiece Galas include the World Premiere of OUT OF THE FURNACE (DIR Scott Cooper) on Saturday, November 9, NEBRASKA (DIR Alexander Payne) featuring a Tribute to Bruce Dern on Monday, November 11, and THE SECRET LIFE OF WALTER MITTY (DIR Ben Stiller) on Wednesday, November 13.
Awards Columnist Pete Hammond - tip him here.