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Steve McQueen’s Widows to open 62nd BFI London Film Festival

The star-studded ensemble includes Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki, Colin Farrell, Daniel Kaluuya & Liam Neeson.

Widows
Credit: 20th Century Fox

Steve McQueen’s Widows is set to open the 62nd BFI London Film Festival later this year, which is once again in partnership with American Express.

The star-studded cast includes Academy Award winner Viola Davis, Michelle Rodriguez, Elizabeth Debicki, Cynthia Erivo, Colin Farrell, Daniel Kaluuya, Lukas Haas and Jacki Weaver with screen legends Robert Duvall and Liam Neeson too.

Taking place on 10th to the 21st of October 2018, the BFI Film Festival will be a celebration of film that will grace the capital for 11 loved up days of movies from around the world.

Academy Award winner Steve McQueen’s past directorial credits include Hunger starring Michael Fassbender, Shame starring Fassbender again alongside Carey Mulligan and his star-studded Oscar winner 12 Years a Slave which featured Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Kenneth Williams, Lupita Nyong’o, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Sarah Paulson and once again Michael Fassbender.

The International premiere of Widows will take place on Wednesday 10th October at the Cineworld, Leicester Square.


Widows is co-written by McQueen and best-selling novelist and screenwriter Gillian Flynn. Widows is a complex thriller about a group of women with nothing in common except a debt left behind by their dead husbands’ criminal activities. It is based on the TV series Widows by Lynda La Plante which was screened in the 80s. Steve McQueen also serves as a producer on Widows, together with Iain Canning, Emile Sherman and Arnon Milchan.

Described as a blistering, modern-day thriller set against the backdrop of crime, passion and corruption, Widows takes place in contemporary Chicago, amid a time of political and class turmoil. Tensions rise when Veronica (Viola Davis), Alice (Elizabeth Debicki), Linda (Michelle Rodriguez) and Belle (Cynthia Erivo) take their fate into their own hands and conspire to forge a future on their own terms.

BFI Fellow, Widows Director and Co-Writer Steve McQueen commented: “I am absolutely delighted that Widows will be opening this year’s BFI London Film Festival. Watching the UK TV version of Lynda La Plante’s original thriller as a teenager in the 80s had a major impact on me and so it feels very special to be sharing this film with a UK audience.”

BFI London Film Festival Artistic Director, Tricia Tuttle says: “We treasure the work of BFI Fellow and Festival alumni Steve McQueen, so it’s an utter pleasure to open our Festival with the International Premiere of Widows. Adapted from a ground-breaking UK television classic into a feature to savour on the biggest cinema screens, this is scintillatingly rich storytelling from a magnificent filmmaker, probing issues around race, class and gender, while always delivering immense style and crackingly sharp thrills.”

Widows is released in cinemas across the UK and Ireland on 9th November.

The 62nd BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express takes place from Wednesday 10th October – Sunday 21st October 2018. The full Festival programme will be announced on Thursday 30 August 2018.

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