Berlin Adds Competition Titles From Jafar Panahi, Werner Herzog, Bill Condon

With only a few weeks to go until the Berlin Film Festival unspools, much of the competition lineup still remains a mystery. However, today has added some clarity with several titles unveiled. Among them, Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi’s latest effort. The director, who is under house arrest and a 20-year filmmaking ban, nevertheless manages to get a movie out every couple of years. His last, Closed Curtain, stirred up controversy in Iran when it won the screenwriting prize in Berlin in 2013. This latest film, Taxi, stars the director, although other details were not immediately available.

Also in the mix is the world premiere, out of competition, of Bill Condon’s Mr. Holmes, starring Ian McKellen, Laura Linney, Milo Parker, Hiroyuki Sanada and Hattie Morahan. McKellen plays the titular detective as he nears the end of his days and revisits an unsolved case which forced him into retirement.

Werner Herzog’s epic Queen Of The Desert will also add star power at the Berlinale Palast with Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Damian Lewis and Robert Pattinson. The film is the story of Gertrude Bell, the Lawrence of Arabia of female diplomats and political attaché for the British Empire at the dawn of the 20th century. The remaining titles will be announced next week. See today’s full list below. Berlin runs from February 5-15.

By Malgorzata Szumowska
With Janusz Gajos, Maja Ostaszewska, Justyna Suwala
World premiere

Cha Và Con và (Big Father, Small Father And Other Stories)
By Di Phan Dang
With Do Thi Hai Yen, Le Cong Hoang, Truong The Vinh
World premiere

Journal D’Une Femme De Chambre (Diary Of A Chambermaid)
By Benoit Jacquot
With Léa Seydoux, Vincent Lindon, Clotilde Mollet, Hervé Pierre, Vincent Lacoste
World premiere

Mr. Holmes
United Kingdom
By Bill Condon
With Ian McKellen, Laura Linney, Milo Parker, Hiroyuki Sanada, Hattie Morahan
World premiere – Out of competition

Queen Of The Desert
By Werner Herzog
With Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Damian Lewis , Robert Pattinson
World premiere

By Jafar Panahi
With Jafar Panahi
World premiere

By Sebastian Schipper
With Laia Costa, Frederick Lau, Franz Rogowski, Burak Yigit, Max Mauff, André M. Hennicke
World premiere

Yi Bu Zhi Yao (Gone With The Bullets)
People’s Republic of China/USA/Hong Kong, China
By Wen Jiang
With Wen Jiang, You Ge, Yun Zhou, Qi Shu, Huang Hung
International premiere

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