Kidman-starrer to open ambitious Italo fest

Nicole Kidman starrer “Fur” will world preem as the out-of-competition opening film of the first RomeFilmFest. The biopic of photographer Diane Arbus will unspool Oct. 13, with Kidman expected on the red carpet.

Helmed by Steven Shainberg (“Secretary”), “Fur” captures the moment of rebellion that led Arbus to turn her back on her conventional family of wealthy furriers to follow an enigmatic man (Robert Downey Jr.), who introduces her to the dwarfs, nudists and drag queens that became some of her subjects.

New Line/HBO specialty arm Picturehouse will release “Fur” Stateside in November. Pic will go out in Italy day-and-date via local distrib Nexo.

The ambitious Rome event will look to capitalize on the “Fur” preem, with its mix of Hollywood star power and indie aura, as it launches into the crowded global fest arena.

The nine-day fest’s lineup will be announced Sept. 26. But, anticipating a few other titles, organizers said Monica Bellucci will tubthump Napoleon biopic “N,” by Italo helmer Paolo Virzi, while Mira Nair’s “The Namesake,” from Fox Searchlight, will play out of competition in the premiere section. Latter pic preems at the Toronto Film Festival on Sept. 11.

Other entries on the roster include Georgian helmer Otar Iosseliani’s “Gardens in Autumn” and Francesca Comencini’s money-themed drama “A casa nostra,” both in competition.

As previously announced, the RomeFilmFest opening night will also feature a tribute to Sean Connery, who will receive a lifetime achievement award.

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