HOLLYWOOD icon Richard Gere will grace the red carpet at the Glasgow Film Festival next month in the biggest coup yet for the event in its 11-year-history.
The star of An Officer and a Gentleman, Pretty Woman and American Gigolo will be at the UK premiere of his latest film Time Out Of Mind, which sees him play a homeless down-and-out in New York, and will take part in an audience Q&A.
Gere will follow in the footsteps of the late Alan Rickman, Richard Dreyfuss, Terry Gilliam, Saoirse Ronan, Jack O’Connell, Peter Capaldi, and Joss Whedon as a big-name festival guest.
Others confirmed include film-makers Peter Greenaway, director of The Pillow Book and The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover, and Michael Caton-Jones, the Scot behind Rob Roy, The Jackal, Memphis Belle and Scandal.
Game of Thrones stars Natalie Dormer and Hannah Murray will both be in Glasgow to help unveil their new films. A number of special guests are also expected on the red carpet for the opening night gala of new Coen Brothers comedy Hail Caesar!, which George Clooney, Scarlett Johansson, Tilda Swinton, Josh Brolin, Ralph Fiennes and Frances McDormand.
Time Out Of Mind and Dormer’s new horror film, The Forest, will be among 60 UK premieres, along with Urban Hymn, Michael Caton-Jones’ new film, set against the backdrop of the 2011 London riots, starring Scottish actress Shirley Henderson.
Others include Zootropolis, Disney’s latest animated feature, which is set in a world in which humans do not exist, Sing Street, the new Dublin-set crowd-pleaser from John Carney, the director of smash hit musical-drama Once, and Truth, a political drama with Robert Redford and Cate Blanchett tackling one of the biggest scandals of George W Bush’s presidency.
New Scottish films include a documentary about the life and legacy of the late Hamish Henderson, the celebrated poet, songwriter and folklorist, and Where You’re Meant To Be, a road movie following singer-songwriter Aidan Moffat’s travels around Scotland, which will be screened at the iconic Barrowland Ballroom. Two of Scotland’s leading actors, Red Road star Kate Dickie, and Paul Higgins, previously best-known for In The Loop, will appear in award-winning horror Couple In A Hole.
The festival will feature special tributes to musical icon David Bowie just weeks after his death, including a 40th anniversary screening of his debut feature film, The Man Who Fell To Earth, at the Glasgow Science Centre.
Welsh film-maker Greenaway will be in Glasgow to talk about his career and unveil his controversial new film, Eisenstein in Guanajuato, about the great Russian silent film director Sergei Eisenstein, the man behind Battleship Potemkin.
One of Hollywood’s leading stuntmen, Vic Armstrong, will discuss his roles in films like On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, Superman, Flash Gordon and Return of the Jedi. There is also a special screenings of Raiders of the Lost Ark, which features some of Armstrong’s best-known stunts in Kelvingrove gallery.
A screening of Network, the classic 1970s satire about a fictional US television network, will be held at BBC Scotland’s Pacific Quay headquarters, while the Grand Ole Opry country and western club will host a screening of classic “chick flick” Thelma and Louise. Ticket-holders for action adventure Con Air will be handed an orange uniform, handcuffed to a partner and whisked off by “prison bus” to a secret location.
Allison Gardner, co-director of the festival, said: “I’m really delighted with the programme. We’ve got some exceptional premieres in our gala strand, a great and thoroughly original line up of documentaries, and a really charming, child-friendly programme headlined by the UK premiere of Disney’s Zootropolis.
“The festival keeps moving forward, with new developments like our industry focus conference, whilst also maintaining our roots as an audience-focused festival where everyone can come together to share a love of cinema.”