London Film Festival 2016 programme revealed

 Free Fire

Free Fire

Has it come around again already? London's premiere film festival - the BFI London Film Festival - unveiled its 2016 edition this morning. The Smoke Screen is already devouring it and will be publishing a 'top ten to see' later this month before the festival proper. But you can read the entire programme here.

Already revealed were the opening and closing films. The festival opens with Amma Asante’s A United Kingdom, the true story of Seretse Khama, King of Bechuanaland (modern Botswana), and Ruth Williams, the London office worker he married in 1947 in the face of fierce opposition from their families and the British and South African governments. The European premiere of the film, which stars David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike, will be on Wednesday 5 October at the Odeon Leicester Square, attended by cast and filmmakers with Asante, David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike expected on the red carpet. There will be a live cinecast from the London event and simultaneous screenings taking place at cinemas across the UK.A UNITED KINGDOM is directed by Asante (Belle) from a screenplay by Guy Hibbert (Eye in the Sky), based on the book Colour Bar by Susan Williams.  

 A United Kingdom

A United Kingdom

Closing the festival is a gala screening of Free Fire - Ben Wheatley (High-Rise, Sightseers) returns with this all-guns-blazing bullet opera, starring Brie Larson, Cillian Murphy and Armie Hammer.

Interestingly, the festival's competition line up will include a Japanese animated film for the first time, as Makoto Shinkai's (The Garden of Words, Journey to Agartha, 5 Centimeters per Second and The Place Promised in Our Early Days) animated body-swapping drama Your Name is booked to play, having had big box office success in its home country.

This LFF will also continue with the LFF Connects series of talks and interviews, bringing in talent from various media industries to discuss their work in front of audiences. The Dark Knight and Inception director Christopher Nolan was the premiere guest at last year's LFF talks. This year sees eight-time Oscar® winner Dennis Muren, the effects master responsible for so many iconic effects in the history of cinema including the original Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, joining the LFF Connects line up. Joining Muren will be David Vickery and Kevin Jenkins from the two-year-old Industrial Light and Magic VFX London studio. Also booked are Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones, co-creators of the hit dystopian sci-fi TV series, Black Mirror.

The 60th BFI London Film Festival takes place from Wednesday 5 October-Sunday 16 October 2016. The full Festival programme will be announced on Thursday 1 September 2016.


Festival Information & Ticket Booking about LFF 2016

BFI Members’ priority booking opens 10.00am, 8 September - join at 

Public booking opens 10.00am, 15 September

Telephone Bookings: 020 7928 3232 between 10:00 – 20:30


In person: BFI Southbank Office: 11:00 – 20:30


Owen Van Spall

Greetings. I am a Film History MA graduate from Birkbeck University of London and a trained NCTJ qualified journalist. Apart from a long history of film and news writing for this site and various other publications, I am also a trained photographer with my own camera kit. I write mostly every day. Along the way I have picked up work experience at Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Independent, The FT, The New Statesman, and more. I have written hard news stories, features, arranged and conducted interviews with celebrities, film directors and other major cultural figures, arranged photo shoots, and covered film festivals, conferences and events in the UK and abroad. If you wish to commission me or enquire about full-time opportunities please find my CV and contact details below. A physical portfolio of print only cuttings can also be provided.