The BFI London Film Festival Sees the Capital Shine
Date posted: 10.10.2012
The 56th BFI London Film Festival starts tonight, beginning a 12 day celebration of cinema across the capital. Running until 21 October and screening more than 300 features and shorts from almost 50 countries, the programme also includes a stellar line-up of special events. The public events will run alongside a packed industry programme, supported by the Mayor of London and Film London.
The UK's largest public film event, the Festival showcases the best of world cinema and presents the finest contemporary international cinema from both established and emerging film-makers.
This year's programme will showcase the best of the capital's film-making talent and facilities with a host of London-shot titles throughout the programme, many of which were assisted by Film London during production.
The festival starts with the star studded Opening Night Gala of Tim Burton's stop motion animated feature, Frankenweenie, which shot entirely at London's 3 Mills Studios. The Studios, world famous for their stop motion facilities and talent, also hosted previous Burton production Corpse Bride and Wes Anderson's Fantastic Mr Fox, which opened the LFF in 2009.
It will be the 5th time in the last six years that a film shot at 3 Mills Studios has opened or closed Festival, with Terence Davies'The Deep Blue Sea closing the festival last year, Never Let Me Go opening in 2010 and Eastern Promises in 2007.
The Cult Gala is another animated film which was partly produced in the capital. A Liars Autobiography is a hugely ambitious attempt to animate Graham Chapman's (of Monty Python fame) life story. Told in 14 different animation styles, it was produced in 14 different animation studios, 11 of which are in London.
Other London-shot galas include Roger Mitchell's Hyde Park on Hudson, screening as the Centrepiece Gala supported by the Mayor of London and Film London. Starring Bill Murray and Laura Linney, the film explores the secret relationship between Franklin D.Roosevelt (Murray) and his distant cousin Margaret Stuckley (Linney).
Closing the Festival is Mike Newell's new adaptation of the classic Dickens novel, Great Expectations. The film, which stars Helena Bonham Carter and Ralph Fiennes shot extensively on location in the capital with sites including Lincolns Inn, Middle Temple, Princelet Street and Wrotham House in Barnet.
Meanwhile in the official competition, Sally Potter's coming-of-age drama sees London taken back to the 1960s. With the Cold War and the mounting threat of nuclear devastation for its backdrop, Ginger and Rosa stars Elle Fanning and newcomer Alice Englert as best friends, alongside Christina Hendricks as the central character's frustrated mother.
Also this year, the London Calling shorts programme will return to the LFF on Tuesday 16 October. A long running collaboration between Film London and the Festival, the event showcases the best new shorts from the capital's most exciting new film-makers supported by Film London production schemes.
In tandem with the public screenings and events, the Festivals' industry programme services both the visiting international industry, alongside UK based film professionals.
As part of the programme, the Film London Production Finance Market (PFM) will on the 17 and 18 October. For a sixth year the popular event will again connect international producers and financiers to establish new financing relationships and get new projects off the ground.
Other London-shot films in this year's Festival include Dustin Hoffman's directorial debut Quartet starring Maggie Smith, the debut feature from award-winning theatre director Rufus Norris' Broken, and London-set noir I, Anna.
With new Festival Director Clare Stewart heading the programme, the events are being taken further afield, with screenings taking place at cinemas across all four corners of the capital including South Kensington's Ciné Lumière and Curzon Mayfair in West London, East London's Hackney Picturehouse and Rich Mix, the Ritzy Brixton in South London and Screen on the Green in the North of the capital.