Spanish auteur Pedro Almodóvar’s English-language debut “The Human Voice” and British artist Steve McQueen’s “Lovers Rock” have been added to the British Film Institute London Film Festival.
Almodovar’s short, loosely based on Jean Cocteau’s play, presents a woman on the edge portrayed by Tilda Swinton, who is waiting for her lover to call. It will play in the festival’s shorts program, and screen at BFI Southbank on Oct. 17, accompanied by a pre-recorded introduction and Q&A with Almodóvar and Swinton.
Meanwhile, the festival has added “Lovers Rock”to its ‘Love’ strand. It will screen Oct. 18. The film, alongside “Mangrove,” which opens the festival, is one of five films from “Small Axe” — a five-film anthology created by McQueen for BBC One and Amazon Prime Video.
Co-written by Courttia Newland and McQueen, “Lovers Rock” tells the fictional story of young love and music at a house party in 1980. Amarah-Jae St Aubyn makes her screen debut opposite the BAFTAs 2020 Rising Star Award recipient Micheal Ward (“Blue Story”) and the cast also includes Shaniqua Okwok (“Boys”), Kedar Williams-Stirling (“Sex Education”), Ellis George (“Dr Who”), Alexander James-Blake (“Top Boy”) and Kadeem Ramsay (“Blue Story”), alongside debutants Francis Lovehall and Daniel Francis-Swaby.
McQueen said: “I’m so happy to be screening ‘Lovers Rock’ at the London Film Festival, to show it here where it belongs is a privilege. I hope this film will bring back memories of parties past and look to the future of parties to come.”
Festival director Tricia Tuttle said: “Steve McQueen’s ‘Lovers Rock’ as a late addition? Swoon… this is exactly what we all need on the last day of the BFI London Film Festival: pure cinematic and musical balm.”
The 64th BFI London Film Festival, in partnership with American Express, runs Oct. 7-18.