Sunday, 16 October 2016


London – Sunday 16 October 2016: The 60th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express®, closed its anniversary year tonight with the European Premiere of Ben Wheatley's FREE FIRE. Audience attendance for the 60th edition reached a record-breaking 184,700, an 18% increase from 157,000 in 2015, with the new temporary Embankment Garden Cinema contributing significantly to that growth.


A further 8,200 people enjoyed the Festival through satellite screenings across the UK of Opening Night film Amma Asante's A UNITED KINGDOM and Werner Herzog's LO AND BEHOLD: REVERIES OF A CONNECTED WORLDwhich, in a first for the Festival, was also made available online as a virtual premiere. UK-wide access brought the overall audience total to 193,129.


The Festival welcomed over 840 international and British filmmakers to present their work from across the LFF programme at venues across the capital. The programme presented more Headline Galas and Special Presentations than ever before, with twelve and 5 respectively (an increase from 7 and 3 at LFF 2015), while the temporary purpose built venue Embankment Garden Cinema was the home for Strand Galas and films in Official Competition.


Filmmakers and cast attending the Festival in support of Headline Galas and Special Presentations included: the Opening Night Gala of A UNITED KINGDOM attended by director Amma Asante and cast members David Oyelowo, Rosamund Pike, Jack Davenport, Tom Felton, Arnold Oceng, Jack Lowden, Laura Carmichael, Charlotte Hope, James Northcote, Jessica Oyelowo, Terry Pheto - the Closing Night Gala of FREE FIRE attended by director Ben Wheatley and cast members Michael Smiley, Sam Riley, Jack Reynor, Cillian Murphy, Mark Monero, Armie Hammer, Tom Davis, Sharlto Copley, Enzo Cilenti, Babou Cessay, Patrick Bergin - AMERICAN HONEY Andrea Arnold, Sasha Lane - ARRIVAL Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner – ASCENT Fiona Tan - BEFORE THE FLOOD Fisher Stevens and Leonardo DiCaprio - THE BIRTH OF A NATION Nate Parker, Armie Hammer, Gabrielle Union, Chiké Okonkwo - IT'S ONLY THE END OF THE WORLD Xavier Dolan, Marion Cotillard, Léa Seydoux - LA LA LAND Damien Chazelle, Ryan Gosling - LION Dev Patel, Nicole Kidman, Divian Ladwa - MANCHESTER BY THE SEA Kenneth Lonergan, Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams - A MONSTER CALLS JA Bayona, Lewis MacDougall, Sigourney Weaver - NOCTURNAL ANIMALS Tom Ford, Amy Adams, Armie Hammer, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ellie Bamber; QUEEN OF KATWE Mira Nair, David Oyelowo, Lupita Nyong'o - SNOWDEN Oliver Stone, Joely Richardson, Rhys Ifans, Eric Kofi-Abrefa - TROLLS Mike Mitchell, Walt Dohrn - THEIR FINEST Lone Scherfig, Gemma Arterton, Sam Claflin, Bill Nighy, Rachael Stirling.


British and international film talent that attended for the Festival's Strand Galas included: THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE (Cult) André Øvredal - BLEED FOR THIS (Thrill) Ben Younger, Miles Teller, Aaron Eckhart, Ciaran Hinds - THE HANDMAIDEN (Dare) Park Chan-wook - MIRZYA (Love) Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Harshvardhan Kapoor, Saiyami Kher - NOCTURAMA (Debate) Bertrand Bonello, Finnegan Oldfield - TONI ERDMANN (Laugh) Maren Ade, Sandra Hüller, Trystan Pütter - andOfficial Competition presentations included:BRIMSTONE Martin Koolhoven, Emilia Jones, Jack Hollington, Jack Roth, Peter Blankenstein - CERTAIN WOMEN Michelle Williams - CLASH Mohamed Diab - ELLE Paul Verhoeven, Isabelle Huppert - FRANTZ François Ozon, Paula Beer - GOLDSTONE Ivan Sen - LAYLA M. Mijke de Jong, Nora El Koussour, Ilias Addab, Jan Eilander -MOONLIGHT Barry Jenkins, Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, Trevante Rhodes, André Holland, Janelle Monáe - A QUIET PASSION Terence Davies, Cynthia Nixon, Catherine Bailey  - UNA Benedict Andrews, Ben Mendelsohn, Tara Fitzgerald, David Harrower, Tobias Menzies, Ruby Stokes - YOUR NAME Makoto Shinkai.


At the annual BFI London Film Festival Award last night the LFF competition winners announced were:

CERTAIN WOMEN - Kelly Reichardt, won the Best Film Award (Official Competition)

RAW - Julia Ducournau, won theSutherland Award (First Feature Competition)

STARLESS DREAMS - Mehrdad Oskouei, won the Grierson Award (Documentary Competition)

9 DAYS – FROM MY WINDOW IN ALEPPO -Issa Touma, Thomas Vroege and Floor van de Muelen, won the Short Film Award

This year the BFI Fellowship was received by Academy Award®-winning director Steve McQueen, and presented by Michael Fassbender. The Fellowship is the highest accolade the BFI can bestow.