Edinburgh Film Festival Launches Varied Programme For 2017

Submitted by edg on Wed, 31 May '17 11.25pm

Kevin Bacon, Oliver Stone, Kyra Sedgwick, and Stanley Tucci are among guests lined up for the 71st Edinburgh International Film Festival next month.

EIFF Artistic Director Mark Adams said at today’s launch that the “diverse programme… (will be) showcasing some of the most exciting, accomplished material from around the world.”

In total, there are 151 features from 46 countries including 17 World Premieres, 12 International Premieres, 9 European Premieres and 69 UK Premieres.

Tickets to the EIFF, which runs between 21 June to 2 July, went on sale to Filmhouse members today at noon and are on sale to the public on Friday 2 June at 10am.

Visiting Stars

The EIFF opens with rural, Yorkshire-set gay romance God’s Own Country and closes with pre-fame Morrissey biopic England Is Mine.

Josh O’Connor, Alex Secareanu, Ian Hart, Gemma Jones and director Francis Lee will be on the red carpet for the UK Premiere of God’s Own Country, while Jack Lowden, Jessica Brown Findlay, Laurie Kynaston and director Mark Gill are confirmed to attend for England Is Mine.

Kyra Sedgwick will also attend the Festival for her directorial debut, Story of a Girl, appearing at an In Person event along with the film’s star and husband Kevin Bacon.

Among the other people appearing at the popular In Person events will be director Stanley Tucci with Final Portrait, his latest film as director; Richard E Grant in the 30th anniversary year of Withnail and I; award-winning composer David Arnold (Die Another Day, Casino Royale and Independence Day); and screen and stage actor Bernard Hill (Lord of the Rings, Titanic).

Audiences can look forward to Q&A screenings with Academy Award-winning screenwriter Oliver Stone, who will present a special 30th anniversary screening of Wall Street, and renowned author Ian Rankin who will present crime drama Reichenbach Falls.

The EIFF long-running relationship with Disney-Pixar continues with the the UK Premiere of animation Cars 3.

Michael Powell Award

One of the appeals of the Edinburgh Film Festival for British filmmakers is the chance to compete for the prestigious Michael Powell Award.

The British film strand includes world premieres of Bryn Higgins’ Access All Areas, featuring Jordan Stephens - one half of hip-hop duo Rizzle Kicks – on a group road trip to the Isle of Wight’s Bestival music Festival; Simon Hunter’s Edie, starring Sheila Hancock as an elderly woman who aims to climb a Scottish mountain; an all-female adaptation of Julius Caesar; and Danny Huston’s The Last Photograph.

There’s also modern silent film London Symphony; filmmaker Justin Edgar’s noir British thriller The Marker; Daniel Jerome Gill’s look at the perils of modern-day relationships in Modern Life Is Rubbish; Sarmad Masud’s My Pure Land, about a mother and daughter’s fight to protect their home; searing abuse drama Romans, starring Orlando Bloom; and moving family drama That Good Night, starring Charles Dance and the late John Hurt.

Other films in this strand include Chris Baugh’s whodunit Bad Day for the Cut; Peter Mackie Burns’ drama Daphne; Rebekah Fortune’s emotional family drama Just Charlie; the Toby Jones-starring psychological thriller Kaleidoscope; taut mother-daughter drama Let Me Go; the emotionally raw The Pugilist; Taiwanese drama The Receptionist; and This Beautiful Fantastic, starring Tom Wilkinson and Jessica Brown Findlay.

Foreign cinema

As well as visiting American stars, US indies feature in the “American Dreams” strand, from coming-of-age comedy-drama Freak Show to The Last Word, starring Shirley MacLaine as a controlling business woman who discovers some home truths when writing her own obituary.

This year’s “European Perspectives” includes a varied line-up with the likes of WWII dramas 1945 and The King’s Choice; Russian sci-fi Attraction; revenge drama Darkland; Nazi-euthanasia drama Fog in August and a Dutch, Edinburgh-set romantic comedy Waterboys.

In the global strand, the EIFF will host the Scottish premiere of Bong Joon Ho’s latest offering Okja, starring EIFF honorary patron Tilda Swinton and the UK premiere of musical comedy EMO the Musical. Meanwhile, Mexico-set I Dream in Another Language looks at language, heritage and hidden pasts.

Docs, lates, and retrospectives

In the documentary strand, the Teenage Superstars will take audiences on a tour of the pre-Britpop, Scottish music scene, while Leaning Into The Wind sees cinematographer Thomas Riedelsheimer and artist Andy Goldsworthy partner up again in a sequel to sleeper hit River and Tides.

The EIFF also returns with late-night scream-inducing premieres, and animation with The McLaren Award showcasing new UK short animations.

An intriguing event is the 80th anniversary screening of Atmosphere | Edge of the World, Michael Powell’s first major feature, which will be presented in Edinburgh University's FloWave Ocean Energy Research Facility wave tank. During the event, the tank will mimic the cinematic seascapes depicted in this tale of the evacuation of a remote island community off the Scottish coast.

A sold-out screening of Steven Spielberg’s Raiders of the Lost Ark will take place at the Usher Hall, accompanied by John Williams’ iconic score performed live by the RSNO.

The country focus for the Festival’s special 70th Anniversary year will be Poland with eight new feature fiction titles, including the International Premiere of Katarzyna Adamik’s thriller Amok.

Experimental features and shorts will be screening under the Black Box strand and a Retrospective Programme, The Future Is History, will explore identity in three parts.

The Festival’s inaugural immersive cinema experience, EIFF: Play (15 – 29 June) and pop-up outdoor cinema Film Fest in the City (16 – 18 June) will kick off the festivities early, with the 71st Edinburgh International Film Festival running from 21 June – 2 July, 2017.

Tickets to this year’s EIFF went on sale to Filmhouse members today at noon today and are on sale to the public on Friday 2nd June at 10am at www.edfilmfest.org.uk.

View programme in PDF.