World premiere of Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio at the London Film Festival

World premiere of Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio at the London Film Festival

World premiere of Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio at the London Film Festival

Pinocchio by Oscar-winning director Guillermo Del Toro will have its world premiere at the 66th BFI London Film Festival.

The stop-motion musical animation is based on the story of Carlo Collodi and will follow the journey of a wooden boy magically animated by the desire of a puppeteer.

The film, set during the rise of fascism in Mussolini’s Italy and starring newcomer Gregory Mann and Star Wars actor Ewan McGregor, is one of 22 features that will debut at this year’s festival.


Emily Blunt and Chaske Spencer star in the upcoming western The English (Diego Lopez Calvin / BBC / PA)

Also included in the lineup is the original short film written by musician Yungblud about self-discovery, titled Mars and starring Heartstopper favorite Yasmin Finney, who joins the Doctor Who cast.

As well as the whistleblower comedy Klokkenluider with Jenna Coleman and Tom Burke, the partly improvised romance She Is Love with Sam Riley and the dark thriller Inland with Sir Mark Rylance.

Likewise, Academy Award winner Asif Kapadia’s collaboration with acclaimed choreographer Akram Khan, Creature, will be joined by Nora Twomey’s family animation My Father’s Dragon and Irish animation studio Cartoon Saloon.

Yemi Bamiro will return to the festival with the sequel to Michael Jordan’s portrait One Man And His Shoes with Super Eagles ’96, on the Nigerian football team.

The festival will also host the world premiere of three new TV series, including Hugo Blick’s western drama The English, about romance and revenge, starring Emily Blunt and Chaske Spencer.

Followed by an English aristocrat Lady Cornelia Locke, played by Blunt, and former Pawnee Nation cavalry scout Eli Whipp, played by Spencer, as they meet in 1890’s America “to traverse a violent landscape built on dreams and blood” .

The comedy series Mammals, starring James Corden, Sally Hawkins and written by award-winning playwright Jez Butterworth, who wrote the play Jerusalem, will also premiere in the episodic selection.

Likewise, Damian Lewis will reunite with Homeland screenwriter Alexander Cary for the premiere of A Spy Among Friends, exploring the defection of MI6 agent Kim Philby to the Soviet Union.

Brit Awards 2018 - Arrivals - London

Damian Lewis (Ian West / PA)

It was previously announced that the world premiere of Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical will open the London Film Festival.

The European premiere of Glass Onion, the sequel to Knives Out, starring Daniel Craig, will close the festival this year.

Oscar-winning director Sir Sam Mendes’ next project Empire Of Light, starring Olivia Colman, Michael Ward and Colin Firth, will have its European premiere at the festival.

The total number of world premieres screened at the festival has increased year-on-year since 2019, from 11% to 15% of the feature film program, he said.

Tricia Tuttle, director of the festival, said: “Gala, competitive feature films, short films: in all sections of the program, this is perhaps the richest overall selection of world premieres that we have had the privilege of hosting at the BFI London Film Festival, and we want to give these artists a moment in the sun before the full launch of the program.

“Ensuring world premieres for their own good is never one of the objectives of our festival for the public, but it is an honor that these directors and artists entrust us with help to launch their beautiful work. And this is, at least in part, due to the passion and commitment of our audience “.

The 66th BFI London Film Festival will run from 5-16 October, with the program launching on Thursday.

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