Al Pacino's 'Salome,' 'Wilde Salome' to Screen Back-to-Back in U.K.

"Wilde Salome"
Courtesy of Lisa Taback Consulting

More personal and obsessive than his 1996 Shakespeare documentary "Looking for Richard," Al Pacino's long-in-the-making "Wilde Salome" is both an intriguing exploration of Oscar Wilde's play and an intimate self-portrait of the actor-director as he overextends himself.

The Oscar winner will take part in a Q&A session hosted by Stephen Fry in London, discussing his passion for the projects based on the famous Oscar Wilde play.

LONDON -- Al Pacino's films Salome and Wilde Salome based on Oscar Wilde's play, are to be screened back-to-back and followed with a Q&A featuring the Oscar-winning actor and filmmaker.

The two movies will make their U.K. bows as part of a special event at the British Film Institute Southbank complex.

The two films, produced by Barry Navidi (The Merchant of Venice) and Robert Fox (The Hours), will be presented together September 21.

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The Pacino Q&A will be broadcast live via satellite to cinemas across the U.K. and Ireland, and the event will be hosted by Stephen Fry.

Salome is Oscar Wilde's most controversial work, banned in London in the late 19th century.

A tale of lust, greed and revenge, it follows the legend of King Herod and his desire for his young stepdaughter, Salome, and her sexual baiting of John the Baptist.

Wilde's adaptation has spawned multiple stage productions, including an opera by Richard Strauss, along with influencing work by musicians including Nick Cave and U2.

Pacino first saw the play performed in London in 1988 with Steven Berkoff in the role of Herod, and the work and performance sparked an obsession for Pacino with the work.

Salome, which stars Pacino and Jessica Chastain, is a filmed version of the play, while Wilde Salome is a documentary that captures the challenges Pacino faced when performing in the play and simultaneously directing the two features.

Wilde Salome follows Pacino's journey to Europe to understand more about one of the literary geniuses of the 20th century, Oscar Wilde.

Fry is a lifelong admirer of the playwright and played the title role in the 1997 feature film Wilde.

Pacino said: "Having Salome and Wilde Salome shown in this context is very rewarding. It's a real source of excitement to me that cinemas across the U.K. will be able to see my films and to share our discussion."

Navidi said: "I am overjoyed that we are releasing both films in the U.K. and Ireland. Working again with Al Pacino has been both inspiring and the greatest journey."

Omniverse CEO Grant Calton said: "The Salome event will be the third project from Cinestage in 2014, and we are delighted to be able to bring someone of Al Pacino's stature and experience to the U.K. With Stephen Fry committed as host, it promises to be a fascinating event."

BFI CEO Amanda Nevill said: "Al Pacino is an icon of stage and screen, and it is an honor to welcome him to the BFI to present Salome and Wilde Salome. It's great to be working once again with Omniverse, and we're thrilled to bring this very special event to cinemas across the U.K."