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Special Events

More screenings of major new movies and some exciting surprise guests.

Best Worst Thing That Ever Could Have Happened

  • Lonny Price
  • USA
  • 95 minutes
Stephen Sondheim, Harold Prince, and George Furth’s much ballyhooed reverse chronology musical Merrily We Roll Along closed after just 16 performances in 1981 but gradually assumed legend status. This alternately heartbreaking and euphoric film focuses on the original cast members, then and now, and the special place this experience holds in their memories.

Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk

  • Ang Lee
  • 2016
  • USA
  • 110 minutes

Special World Premiere Presentation • Presented in RealD 3D

Ang Lee’s brave, heartbreaking adaptation of Ben Fountain’s novel, the story of an Iraq war hero (newcomer Joe Alwyn) who comes home with his fellow members of Bravo Company for a victory tour culminating in a patriotic halftime show in Dallas, is not only a great film but a giant step forward in the art of cinema.

Gimme Danger

  • Jim Jarmusch
  • 2016
  • USA
  • 108 minutes

Jim Jarmusch’s cinematic offering to the punk gods of Ann Arbor, Iggy and the Stooges, traces the always raucous and frequently calamitous history of the band from inception to the present, and recreates the feeling of a night at Max’s Kansas City.

Hamilton’s America

  • Alex Horwitz
  • 2016
  • USA
  • 84 minutes

World Premiere · Special guests to appear in person!*

Lin-Manuel Miranda takes us inside the making of his groundbreaking American musical Hamilton, which started with his discovery of Ron Chernow’s biography of Alexander Hamilton, a poor immigrant from the Caribbean who became one of the Founding Fathers. Interviews, work sessions, and electrifying, fully staged Broadway performance clips abound.


  • Pablo Larraín
  • 2016
  • USA/Chile/France
  • 99 minutes

Special U.S. Premiere Presentation • Q&A with Pablo Larraín, Natalie Portman, Peter Sarsgaard, and screenwriter Noah Oppenheim

Pablo Larraín’s first English-language film is a bolt out of the blue, a fugue-like study of Jackie Kennedy, brilliantly acted by Natalie Portman, dramatizing events from just before, during, and after JFK’s assassination.

Film Comment at NYFF

A Quiet Passion

  • Terence Davies
  • 2016
  • U.K./Belgium
  • 125 minutes

Film Comment Presents · Q&A with Terence Davies, Cynthia Nixon, and producer Sol Papadopoulos*

The great British director Terence Davies turns his attention to 19th-century American poet Emily Dickinson for this formally audacious triumph starring a revelatory Cynthia Nixon.

Film Comment Live: Living Cinema

  • 60 minutes

Free Event • Sponsored by HBO®

For its September-October 2016 edition, Film Comment, the most important and renowned critical film magazine in the U.S. for more than 50 years, has come out of the gate with an issue devoted to the vitality of movies today, as well as an elaborate special section on films featured in the 54th New York Film Festival. For this panel a selection of the magazine’s editors, new contributors, and longtime writers will join to discuss issues raised and questions asked in its pages. Scheduled guests: Shonni Enelow, Michael Koresky, Nick Pinkerton, Nicolas Rapold, Imogen Sara Smith, Farihah Zaman.

Film Comment Live: Filmmakers Chat

  • 60 minutes

Free Event • Sponsored by HBO®

In this special roundtable discussion, a selection of different directors from around the world whose films are screening in this year’s New York Film Festival talk together in a discussion moderated by Film Comment editor Nicolas Rapold. It’s the rare chance to see some of today’s most important filmmakers in dialogue with each other, talking about their experiences watching and creating movies. Scheduled guests: Olivier Assayas (Personal Shopper), Kleber Mendonça Filho (Aquarius), Alison Maclean (The Rehearsal).

Film Comment Live: Festival Wrap

  • 60 minutes

Free Event • Sponsored by HBO®

For the second year in a row, Film Comment contributing critics and editors gather for the festival’s last weekend and talk about the films they’ve seen, discussing—and arguing about—their favorites in the lineup, from Main Slate to beyond. Scheduled guests: Margaret Barton-Fumo, K. Austin Collins, Eric Hynes, Violet Lucca, Aliza Ma, Nicolas Rapold.

Two Special “An Evening with . . .” Celebrations

The New York Film Festival tradition known as “An Evening with” is a limited-seating event that includes an intimate dinner and conversation between an important star of the film world and NYFF Director Kent Jones. Past honorees include Pedro Almodóvar, Cate Blanchett, Ralph Fiennes, Nicole Kidman, Kate Winslet, and more. We’re pleased to announce that this year we are offering two special nights featuring two of the brightest young actors working today.

An Evening with Adam Driver

  • 120 minutes
With his mainstream breakout in last year’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Adam Driver has become a bona fide megastar. But those who have been following him for years, both in his Emmy-nominated role in the HBO series Girls, and in such past NYFF films as Frances Ha and Inside Llewyn Davis, have already been smitten with his artistic style. This year, festival audiences can see his wonderful leading performance in Jim Jarmusch’s exquisite Paterson, as a poetry-writing New Jersey bus driver.

An Evening with Kristen Stewart

  • 120 minutes
For the past few years, Kristen Stewart has been quietly amassing an impressive body of work, starring in enigmatic roles in complex films, including the NYFF52 selection Clouds of Sils Maria, directed by Olivier Assayas, for which she became the first American actor to win the French César award. This year feels like a culmination of this extraordinary phase of her career: she starred in five movies in 2016, the best of which are featured at NYFF: Assayas’s Personal Shopper, in which she appears in nearly every shot; Kelly Reichardt’s Certain Women; and Ang Lee’s Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk. All three films speak to an actor constantly willing to challenge herself and her fans.