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CHICAGO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL ANNOUNCES "THE FRENCH DISPATCH" AS OPENING NIGHT FILM; MORE HIGHLIGHTS
World Premieres, Chicago Stories, and the 25th Anniversary of Black Perspectives
Chicago International Film Festival today announced the Opening Night
film, its Opening Night at the Drive-In presentation, and other
highlights of the 57th edition, running October 13 - 24, 2021. This
year, the Festival expands to venues across Chicago, including AMC River
East 21; the Music Box Theatre; and the Gene Siskel Film Center; and
presents exclusive drive-in screenings at ChiTown Movies in Pilsen; with
special neighborhood pop-up screening events to be announced in the
coming weeks. Virtual screenings, presented via the Festival’s streaming
platform, are accessible across Illinois as well as to viewers in
Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin.
This year’s Opening Night film will be Wes Anderson’s widely embraced and critically-acclaimed Cannes premiere THE FRENCH DISPATCH, a love letter to journalists with an all-star cast, including Benicio del Toro, Adrien Brody, Tilda Swinton, Léa Seydoux, Frances McDormand, Timothée Chalamet, Lyna Khoudri, Jeffrey Wright, Mathieu Amalric, Stephen Park, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson, and Elisabeth Moss.
Meanwhile at ChiTown Movies in Pilsen, audiences will rock out to THE VELVET UNDERGROUND
at a special Opening Night at the Drive-In presentation, presented by
Goldman Sachs and featuring a virtual Q&A with director Todd Haynes. Other exclusive Drive-in presentations throughout the Festival include Michael Pearce’s thriller ENCOUNTER, starring Oscar-nominated actors Riz Ahmed and Octavia Spencer, and THE HARDER THEY FALL, an action-packed revenge Western from Jeymes Samuel and starring Jonathan Majors, Zazie Beetz, Delroy Lindo, LaKeith Stanfield, with Regina King and Idris Elba.
All politics are local as the Chicago International Film Festival hosts
the World Premieres of two documentary features about history-making
mayors. In MAYOR PETE, director Jesse Moss gives an inside look at Pete Buttigieg’s presidential campaign, while Joe Winston’s PUNCH 9 FOR HAROLD WASHINGTON tells the story of Chicago’s first Black mayor. Both Moss and Winston will be in attendance.
This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the Chicago International Film Festival’s Black Perspectives
program, which showcases the excellence and diversity of films by
African Americans and the African diaspora from around the world. Along
with THE HARDER THEY FALL and PUNCH 9 FOR HAROLD WASHINGTON, the program features CITIZEN ASHE, a profile of groundbreaking tennis star and civil rights activist Arthur Ashe from co-directors Sam Pollard and Rex Miller; and a Special Presentation of PASSING,
the story of two high school friends whose reunion threatens their
carefully constructed realities, for which actor-turned-director Rebecca Hall is receiving the Festival’s Artistic Achievement Award.
The full program and screening schedule for the 57th Chicago
International Film Festival will be announced on September 20, 2021.
Early Bird pricing on Festival Passes are on sale now, with individual
tickets going on sale September 21 for Cinema/Chicago members and
September 24 to the general public. Passes can be purchased at www.chicagofilmfestival.com/festival/tickets/.
Celebrating its 57th edition October 13 - 24, 2021, the Chicago
International Film Festival is North America's longest-running
competitive international film festival. Showcasing the best in
international and independent films from around the world, the 57th
edition will be held in person and virtually. From dramas and thrillers
to documentaries and comedies, the Festival presents a vast diversity of
offerings, featuring competitive categories and programs including the
25th anniversary of Black Perspectives; Cinemas of the Americas;
International Comedy; Women in Cinema; Out-Look; After Dark; and the
City & State program, showcasing films made in Chicago and
Health and Safety Protocols Proof of Full vaccination or negative
Covid-19 PCR test result is required to attend the Chicago International
Film Festival. Full vaccination means you have received a second dose
of an authorized two-dose vaccine, or a single-dose vaccine, approved
for full or emergency use from the United States Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) or World Health Organization (WHO), at least 14
days prior to the date of the event. As an alternative to proof of
vaccination, you may gain entry by presenting a negative PCR COVID-19
test result within 72 hours of the event. Vaccination policies and
testing protocols will also extend to Festival staff, volunteers, and
filmmakers. Masks will be required for all staff, volunteers,
filmmakers, and audience members in Festival theaters, regardless of
vaccination status. Masks must remain on and cover the nose and mouth at
all times, and may be temporarily removed when actively eating or
Refer to the Festival’s health protocols webpage for the most up-to-date information.
Festival Sponsors and Partners
The 57th Chicago International Film Festival's sponsors include Major
Festival Sponsors: Goldman Sachs, Xfinity; Festival Sponsors: Baker
Tilly, Cinespace Chicago Film Studios, ComEd, Dark Matter Coffee, Goose
Island, Hamilton Watch, Heineken 0.0, Panavision, Light Iron, SAGindie,
The Seeker, William Blair; Official Agency: Ogilvy; Official Publicity
Agency: Acacia Consulting Group; Festival Supporters: Chicago Film
Office, Camera Ambassador, Consulate General of Canada; Canada Now, and
HI Chicago; Media Partners: CHIRP Radio 107.1 FM, WBBM, WTTW, Make It
Better Media Group. This program is supported in part by an award from
the National Endowment for the Arts, a grant from the Illinois Arts
Council Agency, and a CityArts Grant from the City of Chicago Department
of Cultural Affairs & Special Events. With additional support from
John and Jacolyn Bucksbaum Family Foundation and Susan B. Noyes.