No (high profile) secret screening for NYFF this year?
While films like "Hugo" and "Lincoln" may have received their first looks at the annual New York Film Festival via "secret screenings" in recent years, attendees can probably stop holding their breath for another surprise at the on-going 51st annual.
At least, that's what Jeff Wells is hearing, and since we're just a few days away from closing night, and given the fact that there's really nothing to choose from, it seems fair to call it here. The last I heard officially from the festival, as of late last week, was "we don't know yet."
Over the last few years, NYFF has upped its profile, bringing in glitzy exclusive premieres like "The Social Network," "My Week with Marilyn," "Life of Pi" and "Captain Phillips." They've kept the allure going with secret screenings also exclusive to the festival (in the case of "Lincoln," stepping on the toes of LA-based AFI Fest, which had the film scheduled for a world premiere).
This year a handful of titles had been rumored as possible, with Martin Scorsese's "The Wolf of Wall Street" at the top of the list, given the hometown flavor and the "Hugo" bow from 2011. But the film was not going to be ready in time for its Nov. 15 release date, let alone a public screening in October.
Other possibilities included Disney's "Saving Mr. Banks," which is set for a world premiere at the BFI London Film Festival and a North American premiere at AFI Fest and therefore would have potentially caused a stir with both; Bennett Miller's "Foxcatcher," which was on course to be screened for press in mid-October before it was moved to 2014; the Christian Bale starrer "American Hustle," which is still undergoing the process of test screening and hasn't yet found its groove; and George Clooney's "The Monuments Men," which won't even be scored until the end of the month.
Ridley Scott's "The Counselor" was never in the cards, though I've heard Scott Cooper's "Out of the Furnace" was offered a spot, but that Relativity turned down the opportunity in favor of bowing at AFI Fest just before the film's Dec. 6 release date instead. And Wells is reporting that footage of Wes Anderson's "The Grand Budapest Hotel" was viewed by festival brass but that the film would not be ready to show.
So, apologies to NYFFers. Better luck next year.
UPDATE: I somehow missed this verbiage when NYFF announced a screening of Jean-Luc Godard's "Vivre sa vie." And again, I was nevertheless told, after this release, "we don't know yet." So anyway:
"Leading up to the 51st New York Film Festival, there's been a lot of speculation about a potential surprise screening in the vein of NYFF50's sneak of Steven Spielberg's 'Lincoln' and NYFF49's work in progress screening of Martin Scorsese's 'Hugo.' Would it be Scorsese's 'Wolf of Wall Street?' Or maybe George Clooney's 'Monument Men?' Or perhaps some other awards-buzzed upcoming release?
"Here at Film Society, we think a surprise isn't a surprise unless it's surprising. So this year, we're looking back instead of forward and are thrilled to announce an amazing treat for true film lovers. On Friday, October 4 at 9:00pm, we'll be screening Jean Luc-Godard's 1962 masterpiece 'Vivre sa vie' on Alice Tully Hall's giant screen in a 35mm print courtesy of Janus Films."
The 51st annual New York Film Festival rounds out Saturday with the world premiere of "Her."
1996 | Crime | RSummary: Jerry, a small-town Minnesota car salesman is bursting at the seams with debt... but he's got a plan. He's going to hire two thugs to kidnap his wife in a scheme to collect a hefty ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. It's going to be a snap and nobody's going to get hurt... until people start ...Director: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Cast: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare
2013 | Drama | RSummary: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill have boundless energy in the story of a real-life commodities crook who earned millions through scummy small-time stock trades.Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
1995 | Mystery | NRSummary: Denzel Washington plays an out of work WWII vet who takes the wrong job and is soon neck-deep in a mess of politics, murder, and jazz in '40s Los Angeles.Director: Carl Franklin
Cast: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals
2008 | Science Fiction | PGSummary: Animated series continues the story of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker as they battle the Emperor Palpatine, Count Dooku and General Grievous, but also takes time to explore other smaller characters in the Star Wars universe.Director: George Lucas (creator)
Cast: Tom Kane, Dee Bradley Baker, Matt Lanter
2013 | Thriller | RSummary: Based on the true story of Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) a Miami bodybuilder who wants to live the American dream. He would like to have the money that other people have. So he enlists the help of fellow bodybuilder Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie) and ex-convict, Christian bodybuilder Paul Doyle (D...Director: Michael Bay
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Anthony Mackie, Tony Shalhoub
1993 | Sports | PGSummary: Emotionally powerful sports classic featuring Sean Astin as a skinny high school kid with big football dreams and the determination to make his way towards his dream team at Notre Dame.Director: David Anspaugh
Cast: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
1997 | Crime | RSummary: Quentin Tarantino adaptats an Elmore Leonard novel into this story of a few increasingly desperate people scraping to get by. It has deep soul, a wicked sense of humor, and Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Pam Grier, and Robert Forster.Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster
2013 | Comedy | NRSummary: Insanely funny comedy show created by Amy Schumer, who stars in brilliantly funny sketches about sex, city living, dating, and friendship.Director: Daniel Powell, Amy Schumer (creators)
Cast: Amy Schumer, Kevin Kane, Mike Houston
2007 | Comedy | PGSummary: Newlyweds Nick (Ice Cube) and Suzanne (Long) decide to move to the suburbs to provide a better life for their two kids. But their idea of a dream home is disturbed by a contractor (McGinley) with a bizarre approach to business.Director: Steve Carr
Cast: John C. McGinley, Ice Cube, Nia Long, Aleisha Allen
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