Edinburgh Film Festival: The stars coming to 2019's festival

Jaws star Richard Dreyfuss and Scottish star David Hayman join the already announced Icíar Bollaín, Timothy Spall, Danny Boyle and Jack Lowden

Article by Jamie Dunn | 11 Jun 2019
  • Richard Dreyfuss in Astronaut

Spend any time in Filmhouse’s cafe-bar during the last couple of weeks of June and you’re sure to spot a famous face or two supping on an IPA or filling up on chickpea curry between screenings, appearances and parties at Edinburgh International Film Festival. This morning EIFF confirmed many of the guests expected to attend this year. Among them will be legendary American actor Richard Dreyfuss, whose career has included such glittering titles as American Graffiti, Down and Out in Beverly Hills and The Goodbye Girl, as well as roles in two of the finest films of the 70s: Jaws and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. He’ll be in town to present his new film Astronaut, in which he plays a lonely widower with dreams of heading into space

Other notable guests are some of the folks behind Good Omens, the new adaptation of the fantasy novel by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. The six-part series, which is playing in full on 29 June, is directed by Douglas Mackinnon, and he’ll be in town for some of those screenings alongside composer David Arnold. There’s also a load of people attending for opener Boyz in the Wood, a rambunctious comedy about four kids hiking in the Highlands, with a murderous Duke on their tail. As well as director Ninian Doff and producer Brian Coffey, the film’s four talented leads – Rian Gordon, Lewis Gribben, Samuel Bottomley and Viraj Juneja – will also be there on opening night.

There’s plenty more besides. Angus Macfadyen will attend for Braveheart sequel Robert the Bruce alongside director Richard Gray and members of the cast including Anna Hutchison, Zach McGowan and Emma Kenney. Shauna Macdonald will be here for the world premiere of people’s gala Balance, Not Symmetry, as will its director Jamie Adams – Adams will also attend the screening of his other film in the programme, Bittersweet Symphony. While on closing night, Timothy Spall will present his LS Lowry film, Mrs Lowry & Son.

Already announced are the In-Person talks. Danny Boyle will be here with new film Yesterday and he'll discuss his eclectic body of work, as will prolific documentary filmmaker Nick Broomfield, who's bringing his new film Marianne & Leonard: Words of Love, a doc about Leonard Cohen and his Norwegian muse, Marianne Ihlen. Actors Jack Lowden and Pollyanna McIntosh also get the In-Person treatment; the latter also presents her directorial debut, Darlin’.

Spanish director Icíar Bollaín will be all over the festival this year thanks to a retrospective of her work, and she’ll also be sitting down with legendary producer Rebecca O’Brien to discuss her career. IT Crowd star Katherine Parkinson will attend the UK Premiere of How to Fake a War alongside director Rudolph Herzog – son of Werner. Bill Drummond and actor Tam Dean Burn will perform alongside a presentation of doc Best Before Death, which follows Drummond on two years of his ambitious 12-year world tour. Screenwriter Paul Laverty will also be in town for special screenings of two great Scottish films he made with Ken Loach: My Name is Joe and Carla’s Song.

“The chance for our audiences who come along to Festival screenings and get to see and sometimes meet some of the film talent involved is always a highpoint of the EIFF experience,” notes Mark Adams, EIFF’s artistic director. “We love to have guests at our screenings and to involve them in post-screening Q&A sessions and I think the guests themselves also get a kick out of the experience.”

Edinburgh International Film Festival 2019 runs 19-30 Jun