The Austin Film Festival is dipping its toe into this year’s award-season waters, saying today it has set writer-director Jeff Nichols’ Loving starring Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga as the fest’s opening-night film October 13. The lineup will also include another title eyeing trophies this fall: The Weinstein Company’s Lion, the Dev Patel-Nicole Kidman movie that is already hitting Toronto and London.
Edgerton and Negga star in the true story of Richard and Mildred Loving, who waged a decade-long legal battle that led to the overturning of the state of Virginia’s law prohibiting interracial marriage. The pic was a hit in its Cannes world premiere. It has a November 4 release date in the U.S.
Lion, based on Saroo Brierley’s memoir, also has an Oscar-friendly release date: November 25, the day after Thanksgiving.
The Austin fest runs October 13-20.