Maggie Smith's 'Lady in the Van' Enters Awards Race

The Lady in the Van Still 1 - H 2015
Courtesy of Sony Pictures

The Lady in the Van Still 1 - H 2015

The film adaptation of Alan Bennett's hit play will get an Oscar-qualifying run in December.

Maggie Smith's Lady in the Van hopes to be an awards player after earning glowing reviews at the 2015 Toronto Film Festival.

Sony Classics Pictures said Thursday it will give the film a qualifying run on Dec. 4 in New York and Los Angeles before its official debut in select theaters on Jan. 15.

In the film, Smith plays the titular van-dweller, who takes up "temporary" residence in the driveway of an unsuspecting London man, played by Alex Jennings, and proceeds to live there for 15 years.

Based on a true story, Nicholas Hytner's film adaptation of Alan Bennett's West End hit also stars Dominic Copper and James Corden.

Smith has won two Oscars, including a best actress win in 1969 for The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and a supporting actress award in 1979 for California Suite.