Monday, August 22, 2016

'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk' will world premiere at the New York Film Festival on 14 October

Ang Lee’s highly anticipated Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk will screen as a Special World Premiere Presentation of the 54th New York Film Festival on Friday, October 14, at AMC Lincoln Square (1998 Broadway, New York, NY 10023).

New York Film Festival Director and Selection Committee Chair Kent Jones said, “Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk astonished me, and it moved me deeply—in the grandest way, as a story of America in the years after the invasion of Iraq, and on the most intimate person-to-person wavelength. Ang Lee has always gone deep into the nuances of the emotions between his characters, and that’s exactly what drove him to push cinema technology to new levels. It’s all about the faces, the smallest emotional shifts. In every way, Billy Lynn is the work of a master.”

Billy Lynn is also a giant step forward in the art of cinema, made with a cinematographic process years ahead of its time. The film, from TriStar Pictures and Studio 8 in association with LStar Capital, Film4, Bona Film Group, and Fosun Media, is the first full-length narrative film shot in 4K, native 3D at the ultra high rate of 120 frames-per-second. The NYFF event will be the first time ever the format will be screened publicly. Creating the film in this immersive format required technical invention at each stage of the process—prep, shooting, and postproduction. The commercial run of the film will play in a variety of 2D and 3D formats, all of which display the new techniques with which the film was made.

Lee’s stunning adaptation of Ben Fountain’s novel is the story of an Iraq war hero (newcomer Joe Alwyn) who comes home with his fellow members of Bravo Company for a victory tour. This ends with a halftime show at a Thanksgiving Day football game—a high-intensity media extravaganza summoning memories of the trauma of losing his beloved sergeant in a firefight. Lee’s brave, heartbreaking film goes right to the heart of a great division that haunts this country: between the ideal image of things as they should be and the ongoing reality of things as they are. With a brilliant supporting cast, including Kristen Stewart, Chris Tucker, Garrett Hedlund with Vin Diesel and Steve Martin.

“I’m very grateful to the New York Film Festival for selecting our film and giving it such a unique platform,” said Lee. “The New York Film Festival has been such an important event for me both as a New Yorker and a filmmaker, and I am honored to be represented this year with Billy Lynn. With each film, I try to learn fresh ways to connect with the audience and with myself. Since Life of Pi, I have been working with my team towards a new cinematic approach that I hope will revitalize that connection. But technology is merely a tool; it should always be in service of artistic expression, to make it strong and fresh, because story and drama matter most. I thought Billy’s journey, which is both intimate and epic, and told almost entirely from his point of view, lent itself particularly well to the emotion and intensity that this new approach fosters. At least I hope so, as many people have worked long and hard to help me try to make the future a reality today. I am thankful to them all.”

Ang Lee at the 50th New York Film Festival with Life of Pi. Photo by Olga Bas.Ang Lee at the 50th New York Film Festival with Life of Pi. Photo by Olga Bas.

Lee has a long history with the festival. Most recently, his Oscar-winning Life of Pi was Opening Night of NYFF50 in 2012. His 1997 film The Ice Storm opened NYFF35, and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon was Closing Night of the 38th festival in 2000.

Directed by Ang Lee and produced by Marc Platt, Ang Lee, Rhodri Thomas, and Stephen Cornwell, Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk is based on the widely acclaimed, best-selling novel by Ben Fountain, with a screenplay by Jean-Christophe Castelli.

The public will be able to enter a lottery for tickets to see 'Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk'. Details here. This has now ended. All screenings are full.

There will be screenings for the public on October 14 and 16.

Ang Lee will also be participating in a talk at the film festival. 

Directors Dialogues: Ang Lee (Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk)

One of the most versatile artists at work in cinema today, Ang Lee has brought his extraordinary skills to a wide array of projects since he started making films in the early 90s. His work is as emotionally complex and delicate as it is challenging and technically adventurous. With Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk, screening as a special world premiere presentation in this year’s festival, Lee reaches a new peak in his career and takes the art of cinema one step further. Lee will join Kent Jones, Director of the New York Film Festival, for a wide-ranging discussion of his remarkable career.

Saturday, October 15, 3:30pm

Details here.


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