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‘Nomadland’ to Open Montclair Film Festival, ‘One Night in Miami’ to Close

Nomadland Francis McDormand
Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures

Chloé Zhao’s “Nomadland” has been selected as the opener for the ninth edition of the Montclair Film Festival on Oct. 16, with Regina King’s “One Night in Miami” as the Oct. 24 closing title.

“Nomadland” premiered at the Venice Film Festival on Sept. 11, and won the Golden Lion. The film is set after the economic collapse of a company town in rural Nevada, with Frances McDormand’s character Fern exploring a life outside of conventional society as a modern-day nomad.

“One Night in Miami” is King’s feature directorial debut in a fictionalized story of Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Jim Brown, and Sam Cooke celebrating Ali’s surprise title win over Sonny Liston in Miami. It had its world premiere at Venice on Sept. 7, 2020, the first film directed by an African-American woman to be selected in the festival’s history.

Both films will screen at the Carpool Theater drive-in, as will the festival’s Centerpiece films: Kate Winslet’s “Ammonite” on Oct. 17 and Derek DelGaudio’s performance art film “In & Of Itself” on Oct. 24.

“Ammonite” premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival. It stars Winslet and Saoirse Ronan in a 19th Century romance based on the life of British paleontologist Mary Anning. The screening of “In & Of Itself” will be followed by a Q&A with director Frank Oz, DelGaudio, and executive producers Stephen and Evelyn Colbert.

Stephen Yeun’s “Minari” has been selected as the festival’s Virtual Centerpiece title for an Oct. 20 showing. Yeun plays the father of a Korean American family that moves to Arkansas in search of their own American Dream.

“We are so proud to be able to share the work of these incredible filmmakers at our festival,” said Montclair Film Executive Director Tom Hall. “This year has been so difficult for our industry, and to be able to persevere and bring the festival to our community feels like a gift. For us, each of these films a testament to the necessity and power of filmmaking, and we cannot wait for our audiences to discover them.”