Rome Film Fest Lineup Includes 'Truth,' 'Freeheld,' 'The End of the Tour'

Courtesy of A24 Films
'The End of the Tour'

A newly announced talk series will launch conversations with Wes Anderson, Todd Haynes, Joel Coen, Paolo Sorrentino and William Friedkin.

As the Rome Film Fest enters its 10th year, it is trying another major rebranding this year. Having dropped its main competition in favor of an audience award, it is billing itself as a big celebration for cinema in Italy’s film capital.

Under the new direction of artistic director Antonio Monda, the fest is now focusing on top new movies, coming to Italy on the tails of major festivals like Toronto and New York, as was evident in Tuesday's lineup announcement.

Monda, who previously organized a series of conversations with American auteurs for the festival in its early days, is also bringing back a focus on talks, now billed as "Close Encounters." This year’s lineup includes conversations with Wes Anderson, Joel Coen and Frances McDormand, Paolo Sorrentino, Todd Haynes and Renzo Piano. Jude Law, who is in Rome for Sorrentino's The Young Pope, will also join in the discussions. Julie Taymor will also present A Midsummer Night’s Dream. And William Friedkin and Dario Argento will also be paired together in conversation.

Overall, 37 films from 24 countries are playing in the festival this year. Real-life dramas are heavily represented in the lineup. As previously announced, the newsroom story that brought down Dan Rather, Truth, by James Vanderbilt, will open the festival. And tightrope walking drama The Walk from Robert Zemeckis will screen after its New York Film Festival debut. Overlapping with the London Film Fest, the festivals have agreed to share top titles and invitees. 

Other prominent films unveiled on Tuesday include Peter Sollett's timely Freeheld, starring Julianne Moore, Ellen Page, Michael Shannon and Steve Carell. James Ponsoldt's David Foster Wallace drama The End of the Tour with Jason Segel and Jesse Eisenberg, and Michael Almereyda's Experimenter with Peter Sarsgaard, Winona Ryder and Kellan Lutz will also play. 

The latest films from Noah Baumbach, Mistress America, and Paul Thomas Anderson, his documentary Junun, are other highlights of the festival. And Tom Hardy's twin dazzler Legend by Brian Helgeland will have its Italian premiere in Rome.

The festival's new market, MIA, will expand to cover all aspects of the European audiovisual industry, including film, documentaries, TV series and video games. 

There are also numerous tributes planned for the 10-year anniversary of the festival, including a tribute to Rome’s iconic director Pier Paolo Pasolini, 40 years after his tragic death.

Antonio Pietrangeli will also receive a special tribute, in collaboration with the Istituto Luce Cinecitta. The tribute will then travel in November to the MoMA in New York.

Other tributes include Pixar Animation Studios, Ettore ScolaPaolo and Vittorio Taviani, Francesco Rosi, Ingrid Bergman, Luis Bunuel, Stanley Kubrick and Frank Sinatra, with various films being shown throughout the festival. 

And the MAXXI will screen the works of Chilean director Pablo Larrain in another special retrospective. 

The Rome Film Fest takes place Oct. 16-24.

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