It looks like Africa as well as the power and versatility of Black actors will be theme of this years BFI London Film Festival. Last month it was announced Amma Asante‘s A United Kingdom will close this year’s festival, this afternoon BFI announced the opening gala premiere will be Mira Nair’s Queen Of Katwe.
Disney’s Queen Of Katwe will receive its European Premiere on Sunday 9 October at the Odeon Leicester Square, a film starring David Oyelowo (also in closing film too), Lupita Nyong’o and newcomer Madina Nalwanga, who will attend along with director Mira Nair.
Queen Of Katwe is the vibrant true story of a young girl, Phiona Mutesi (Nalwanga) selling corn on the streets of rural Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to the game of chess by Robert Katende (Oyelowo) a soccer player turned missionary. As a result of the support she receives from her mother Harriet (Nyong’o), family and community, Phiona is instilled with the confidence and determination she needs to pursue her dream of becoming an international chess champion.
Director Mira Nair, says: “It makes me very proud that the European premiere of QUEEN OF KATWE, a film so close to my heart, and set in my hometown of Kampala, will take place at the BFI London Film Festival. I have so many fond memories of London. We are proud to be back.”
David Oyelowo, comments: “QUEEN OF KATWE beautifully illustrates a thing I know to be true but rarely see in films. Africa is teeming with amazing people who in spite of their, at times, difficult lives, manage to remain full of joy and hope. This is a story where the impossible is made possible through family, mentorship, encouragement, hard work, and faith, all things we can aspire to. It is a story that speaks to anyone and everyone, and I am so proud to have it screen in my hometown as part of the BFI London Film Festival.”
Clare Stewart, BFI London Film Festival Director, commented: “QUEEN OF KATWE is an inspirational story, directed with vision and heart by Mira Nair and featuring performances of great depth and integrity from David Oyelowo, Lupita Nyong’o and newcomer Madina Nalwanga. We are proud to be announcing its European premiere to coincide with the launch of the BFI’s Black Star season.”
Queen of Katwe is set for an 4th November UK cinema release (A United Kingdom will be released in UK on 25th November)
The 60th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express takes place from Wednesday 5 October-Sunday 16 October 2016. The full Festival programme will be announced on Thursday 1 September and stay tune here at The Peoples Movies and we’ll post you the full line up when we get it.