Steve McQueen’s ‘MANGROVE’ to open the 64th BFI London Film Festival!

The BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express has announced that Steve McQueen’s latest film, MANGROVE, one of five original films from the upcoming drama anthology series, Small Axe, will open the 64th BFI London Film Festival.

Starring Letitia Wright, Shaun Parkes and Malachi Kirby, MANGROVE will receive its European premiere on Wednesday 7th October 2020 as part of the Festival’s innovative 12-day offering which takes the entire Festival out to cities around the UK, and with many films across programme also available for virtual premieres at home.

Marking 50 years since the events depicted in the film, MANGROVE tells the true story of the Mangrove 9, the group of Black activists who clashed with London police during a protest march in 1970 and their highly publicised trial that followed. The trial was the first judicial acknowledgment of behaviour motivated by racial hatred within the Metropolitan Police. MANGROVE is co-written by Steve McQueen and Alastair Siddons.


Steve McQueen comments:

“I couldn’t be happier that MANGROVE will open this year’s BFI London Film Festival. Although the themes are universal, MANGROVE is a London story. It may have happened fifty years ago, but it’s as relevant today as it was then.”


This year, Festival audiences will be invited to book tickets to preview the film for free at venues across the UK on Wednesday 7th October ahead of its broadcast on BBC One this autumn.

MANGROVE and eleven other highly-anticipated new films from the programme will screen in previews across the UK, in partnership with a UK-wide cinemas network, marking the most audience-accessible version of the Festival to date.

As previously announced, the majority of this year’s LFF will be delivered as virtual premieres in a programme of over 55 films that offer audiences the opportunity to see the excellent new cinema from around the world from the comfort of their own homes, as well as Screen Talks with major filmmakers and actors and a brand new Virtual Exhibition of XR and Immersive Art.

Small Axe will premiere on BBC One and iPlayer this autumn and air on Amazon Prime Video in the US.

The 64th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express takes place from Wednesday 7th October to Sunday 18th October 2020. The full Festival programme will be announced at an online launch on Tuesday 8th September 2020 and all tickets will be bookable via venue partners.

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