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‘Queen & Slim’ to Open AFI Fest

Romantic drama “Queen & Slim,” starring Daniel Kaluuya and Jodie Turner-Smith, has been selected as the opening night title for the 33rd edition of the AFI Fest in Hollywood, Calif.

The film is directed by two-time Grammy winner Melina Matsoukas and written by Emmy winner Lena Waithe from a story by Waithe and James Frey. The story follows a couple whose first date takes an unexpected turn when a police officer pulls them over. The cast includes Bokeem Woodbine, Chloë Sevigny, Flea, Sturgill Simpson and Indya Moore.

Matsoukas, who graduated from AFI in 2005, was awarded AFI’s Franklin J. Schaffner Alumni Medal earlier this year. AFI president and CEO Bob Gazzale said, “Melina’s powerful voice is the embodiment of the AFI ideal, for we believe in the revolutionary power of visual storytelling to share perspectives, inspire empathy and drive culture forward. We are honored to shine a proper light upon her and ‘Queen & Slim.'”

Matsoukas said, “I feel privileged to present my first feature film, ‘Queen & Slim,’ at the opening night of AFI Fest, a place that is integral to my story as a filmmaker.”

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Universal is releasing “Queen & Slim” on Nov. 27. Last year’s AFI Fest opened with legal drama “On the Basis of Sex,” starring Felicity Jones as the young Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

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