British actor Colin Firth stars in 'Genius' as the legendary literary editor Max Perkins
Berlin - AFP
New movies starring Colin Firth, Jude Law and Emma Thompson will premiere at the 66th Berlin film festival in February, organisers said Friday as they announced the first of the competition slate.
Europe's first major cinema showcase of the year said it would present the keenly awaited adaptation of the global bestseller "Alone in Berlin" during the 11-day event.
The Nazi-era thriller, a German-British-French production, features Thompson and Brendan Gleeson as a working class couple who decide to mount a daring resistance campaign after losing their only son in the war.
"Genius", a British-US biopic starring Oscar winner Firth as legendary literary editor Max Perkins, Law as Thomas Wolfe, Dominic West as Ernest Hemingway and Guy Pearce as F. Scott Fitzgerald, will also enter the race for the festival's Golden Bear top prize.
US director Jeff Nichols, who made independent hits such as "Mud" and "Take Shelter", will present "Midnight Special" with his frequent muse Michael Shannon, whose co-stars include Kirsten Dunst, Adam Driver and Sam Shepard.
The sci-fi thriller tells the story of a man racing to protect his gifted young son from a religious cult leader and government agents.
Also in the main line-up are US documentary "Zero Days" about the perils of breached cybersecurity, and Canadian drama "Boris without Beatrice" by Denis Cote.
The Berlinale Special sidebar section, outside the main competition, will feature the European premieres of new documentaries by US firebrand filmmaker Michael Moore, "Where to Invade Next", and fellow Oscar winner Morgan Neville, "The Music of Strangers: Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble".
American directors Joel and Ethan Coen will open the event on February 11 with a screening of all-star romp "Hail, Caesar!", a send-up of Hollywood's 1950s Golden Age.
It will screen out of competition for the Golden Bear, which will be awarded by a jury led by Meryl Streep on February 20.
This year's top prize went to "Taxi" by Iranian dissident director Jafar Panahi.