The Scottish stars launching new work at Edinburgh's film festival

John Hannah, Ewen Bremner, Tilda Swinton and Dickie are among the stars set to launch new work at the Edinburgh International Film Festival this summer.

Edinburgh-born Freya Mavor's new romantic comedy Modern Life Is Rubbish will be launching at the festival.
Edinburgh-born Freya Mavor's new romantic comedy Modern Life Is Rubbish will be launching at the festival.

An Edinburgh-set feature film inspired by the music of The Waterboys and a documentary charting the rise of Scottish indie banks like Teenage Fanclub, Jesus and Mary Chain, and Primal Scream will also be unveiled at the event.

Sir Sean Connery and Robbie Coltrane will be honoured with retrospective screenings of their previous work at the event, which will also a rare screening of a TV thriller adapted from an Ian Rankin short story, Reichenbach Falls.

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Sunshine on Leith stars Kevin Guthrie and Freya Mavor will also be launching brand new films at the 12-day festival, which will be celebrating its 70th anniversary in June and July.

Hannah, who shot to fame in Four Weddings and a Funeral, will be starring in The Marker, a noir thriller about a criminal seeking redemption by tracking down the daughter of the woman he killed.

Swinton, a long-time patron of the film festival, stars alongside Jake Gyllenhaal in Okja, a new South Korean-American fantasy adventure in competition at the Cannes Film Festival, about a schoolgirl’s friendship with a giant pig.

Dickie, whose best known roles include Red Road, Game of Thrones and Prometheus, will be playing a transsexual character in her film film, Natalie, while Bremner has produced No Song To Sing, about a professional femme fatale working for a Tokyo club.

Guthrie, who recently appeared in the big-screen adaptation of Sunset Song, will star opposite veteran English actress Sheila Hancock in Edie, a drama about a recently-bereaved woman in her eighties who decides to climb a mountain in the Highlands.

Skins favourite Mavor will be staring opposite Josh Whitehouse in Modern Life Is Rubbish, about a couple in the throes of a break-up reliving the highlights of their relationship while splitting up their record collection.

X-Men and The Aviator star Danny Huston has directed and stars in The Last Photograph, which is said to revolve around the story of the Lockerbie disaster.

The festival will be unveiling Teenage Superstars, a new documentary lifting the lid on Glasgow’s music scene in the 1980s and 1990s, which is a sequel to Grant McPhee’s much-acclaimed Big Gold Dream, which recently had its network TV premiere.

Waterboys, which features the music of the iconic band and a guest appearance on screen, is a road trip comedy following a father and son from Amsterdam to Edinburgh.

Other new Scottish films include The Dark Mile, a chilling horror set in the Highlands, which is billed as a cross between Deliverance and Rosemary’s Baby.

Sir Sean’s appearances in 1980s films Outland and Time Bandits will be recalled with special screenings while Coltrane can be seen in Mona Lisa, Scrubbers and Death Watch.

The festival will also be staging a special screening of Michael Powell’s 1937 classic, The Edge of the World, about the evacuation of St Kilda, at a real-life wave research facility at Edinburgh University.

The full programme for this year’s festival, which runs from 21 June till 2 July, will be unveiled on 31 May. Special guests expected on the red carpet will be confirmed just before the festival gets underway.

Festival director Mark Adams said: “Scottish talent has always been at the heart of the festival and I’m thrilled to once again illuminate the great work that currently exists within the country.

“The quality, variety and breadth of this year’s programme is a true testament to the high-level of craftsmanship in past and present Scottish film”.

Natalie Usher, director of screen at national arts agency Creative Scotland, said: “It’s great to see the Edinburgh International Film Festival giving a high-profile platform to Scotland’s home-grown filmmaking talent across features, short films, documentaries and animation.

“As one of the key cultural events in Scotland, its recognition and celebration of Scottish talent in its 2017 programme is very welcome, helping to showcase the strength and depth of Scottish film.”