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Clint Eastwood’s latest movie, Richard Jewell, will have its world premiere at AFI Fest.
The movie joins the previously announced festival title Queen & Slim, a crime thriller from Lena Waithe and Melina Matsoukas, and The Banker, an Apple drama starring Samuel L. Jackson.
Based on Marie Brenner’s story in Vanity Fair, the pic focuses on Jewell, who was working as a security guard at the 1996 Olympic Summer Games in Atlanta when he discovered a backpack containing pipe bombs. He then sounded the alarm and helped to clear the area.
Initially hailed as a hero, Jewell was soon the prime suspect. The FBI searched his home twice, and the media painted him as an overweight failed cop. Jewell was eventually cleared as the nation’s attention moved on to another topic. He died in 2007 at the age of 44.
Eastwood’s cast includes Sam Rockwell, Kathy Bates, Olivia Wilde and Jon Hamm, with BlacKkKlansman actor Paul Walter Hauser playing Jewell.
“Clint Eastwood is an American icon,” AFI president and CEO Bob Gazzale said Tuesday in a statement. “It is an honor for AFI to premiere this next chapter in his storied career — one that continues to enrich the nation’s cultural legacy with undeniable impact.”
AFI Fest has traditionally been an important stop on the path to awards for potential contenders. Warner Bros. recently dated Richard Jewell for a Dec. 13 release.