Changes for the New York Film Festival

Over this past year, countless organizations, festivals, and traditions have either been shut down or had to scramble to adapt due to the pandemic.  Covid-19 has halted many plans and culturally significant events in the recent past and continues to impact longstanding traditions.  Most recently, the New York Film Festival has attempted to carry on amidst these unprecedented conditions.

The event started Thursday, September 17th and runs through Sunday, October 11th.  Much of the festival is available online, but there are also drive-in screenings available in the Bronx, Brooklyn, and Queens.  With the first drive-in screening being Steve McQueen’s Lovers Rock this past Thursday, the New York Film Festival is the largest US festival to attempt an opening during this pandemic.   

This year’s slate is about 25% smaller than that of last year, and the centerpiece film is Chloé Zhao’s Venice Golden Lion winner Nomadland.  Meanwhile, the closing night film is French Exit, starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Lucas Hedges. 

While not much is the same with this year’s film festival, many of these changes bring new opportunities.  The program is now available on a national stage, as the online viewings give those around the country the opportunity to purchase tickets to this year’s festival.  Even though the traditional New York atmosphere will be missed, there are many movies that are a must-watch this year that you can now view from the comfort of your own home.

Check out the schedule with showtimes here.


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