Joel Coen’s ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’ to Close London Film Festival


Joel Coen’s The Tragedy of Macbeth is set to close the 65th BFI London Film Festival.

The A24 and Apple film — written and directed by Coen and starring Denzel Washington, Frances McDormand, Bertie Carvel, Alex Hassell, Corey Hawkins, Harry Melling, Brendan Gleeson and Kathryn Hunter — will receive its European premiere on Oct. 17 at the Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, with Coen expected to attend.

Described as a bold and fierce adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic tale of murder, madness, ambition and wrathful cunning, The Tragedy of Macbeth joins the already announced London Film Festival opener, Netflix’s Western The Harder They Fall, and Jane Campion’s The Power of the Dog, which is getting a gala screening. The full program will be unveiled on Sept. 7.

“Shakespeare belongs to the world but comes from Britain,” said Coen, who produced the film alongside McDormand and Robert Graf. “Having borrowed your cultural patrimony and having had the great good luck to work with a few of your most brilliant actors, I’m honored to bring this movie to the London Film Festival for its European premiere.”

Added festival director Tricia Tuttle: “We fell in love with Joel Coen’s adaptation of Shakespeare’s Scottish play. Poised in a magical space between theatre and cinema, this is a stunning production. Bruno Delbonnel’s silvery monochrome photography captures the moody almost expressionist sets from designer Stefan Dechant and Carter Burwell has written a spell-casting score. And while the ensemble cast – including many U.K. talents – is thoroughly excellent, Frances McDormand and Denzel Washington mesmerize as the couple whose political ambition proved their fatal downfall.”

The 65th BFI London Film Festival runs Oct. 6-17.

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