London Film Festival Unveils Industry Program, Including China Focus

Jeff Lewis
Geena Davis

Geena Davis, Guy Maddin, Laurie Anderson and Abi Morgan are among the speakers set for talks, forums and workshops, and a panel will explore the impact of the foreign-language Oscar.

Christopher Nolan may have already been unveiled as perhaps the biggest name at the upcoming BFI London Film Festival’s LFF Connects talks, but organizers on Monday announced other speakers on the increasingly busy industry schedule.

Joining the Interstellar director and artist Tacita Dean for a series of discussions about film’s engagement with other creative industries are creative pioneer Laurie Anderson – who competed at the recently concluded Venice Film Festival with the film Heart of a Dog (which is also heading to LFF) – together with filmmaker and installation artist Guy Maddin and virtual reality innovator Chris Milk.

The festival will host a symposium addressing the issue of gender equality in film with a previously announced collaboration between the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media and the U.K.'s own Women in Film and Television organization, which will be the Institute’s first such symposium to be held outside of the U.S. Geena Davis will take part, alongside Carol producer Elizabeth Karlsen of Number 9 Films, He Named Me Malala producer Laurie MacDonald, screenwriter Abi Morgan (Suffragette, The Iron Lady), Film4 director David Kosse and the British Film Institute CEO Amanda Nevill, among others.

The U.K.’s culture minister Ed Vaizey is set to attend a forum on advancing diversity in cinema, while Oscar-winning producer Mark Johnson (Rain Man), chair of The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ foreign-language film committee, will lead a panel discussing the impact of the Academy’s foreign-language award.

The BFI London Film Festival is set to run Oct. 7-18.

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