The 58th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express® is privileged to announce that the UK premiere of CITIZENFOUR, the new film by Academy Award® nominee, Pulitzer prize-winner Laura Poitras will be presented as a Documentary Special Presentation at this year’s Festival, screening on Friday 17 October, 8pm, Curzon Chelsea and Saturday 18 October, 3.30pm Hackney Picturehouse.
In January 2013, filmmaker Laura Poitras was several years into the making of a film about abuses of national security in post-9/11 America when she started receiving encrypted emails from someone identifying himself as “citizen four”, who was ready to blow the whistle on the massive covert surveillance programmes run by the NSA and other intelligence agencies. In June 2013, she and reporter Glenn Greenwald flew to Hong Kong for the first of many meetings with the man who turned out to be Edward Snowden. She brought her camera with her. The film that resulted from this series of tense encounters is absolutely unique in the history of cinema: a 100% real-life thriller unfolding minute by minute before our eyes.
Clare Stewart, BFI London Film Festival Director, comments:
We are committed to building and expanding our documentary selection at BFI London Film Festival and are thrilled to be bringing audiences this bitingly relevant film that speaks to the political consciousness of our times. Laura Poitras has built a body of work that balances political urgency with striking filmmaking and she demonstrates that again with the hugely significant CITIZENFOUR.
CITIZENFOUR is a Praxis Films feature presented by BRITDOC and Artificial Eye in association with Bertha Foundation and Channel 4. Directed by Laura Poitras (My Country, My Country, The Oath – previous films of her 9/11 trilogy), edited by Mathilde Bonnefoy (Run Lola Run), produced by Laura Poitras, Mathilde Bonnefoy, Dirk Wilutzky, featuring Edward Snowden. Executive producers are Steven Soderbergh, David Menschel, Jeff Skoll, Diane Weyermann and Sheila Nevins. It was filmed by Laura Poitras, Kirsten Johnson, Katy Scoggin and Trevor Paglen.
Made possible by support from Bertha / BRITDOC, Vital Projects Fund, Sundance Institute Documentary Fund, Channel 4, Cinereach, Deutsche Film Förderfonds (DFFF), Participant Media, Ford Foundation, Nord Deutscher Rundfunk (NDR) / Bayrischer Rundfunk (BR)
Venue will be announced and tickets will be on sale to BFI Members from 10am on Friday 19 September and for public sale from 10am on Saturday 20 September.
The film is being co-distributed in the UK by Artificial Eye and BRITDOC Foundation to be released in cinemas from Friday 31 October, 2014 as a Film4 co-production. Channel 4 will play the film in early 2015.
The 58th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express runs from Wednesday 8 October to Sunday 19 October.