Red carpets were unrolled Wednesday as the British capital plays host to some of international cinema’s big names for the 12 days of the London Film Festival 2017.
The opening night gala included the European premiere of “Breathe,” the directorial debut of Andy Serkis, who came to fame as an actor for his motion-capture portrayals of CGI characters such as Gollum in the “Lord of the Rings” and the “Planet of the Apes” films.
Stars including Oscar-winner Emma Stone and Bryan Cranston will be at the event promoting films – the tennis drama “Battle of the Sexes” and the Richard Linklater-directed comedy “Last Flag Flying” respectively.
The 61st edition of the festival will show 243 feature films from 67 countries– 37 new British films will be playing at this year’s festival, as well as a slew of shorts and documentaries.
Another highlight is the UK premiere of Loving Vincent, the first ever fully painted feature film, which explores the life and art of Vincent Van Gogh: Variety calls it “truly awe-inspiring”.
“It is a delight to welcome some of the most thrilling storytellers from across the world to the Festival – we love to watch and engage with the extraordinary conversations that the Festival brings,” said Amanda Nevill, chief executive of the British Film Institute.
The BFI London Film Festival runs until 15 October.