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CAPTAIN PHILLIPS (2013): Opens NY Film Festival, Sets Awards Stage

Tom Hanks Captain Phillips

Captain Phillips will open the 2013 New York Film Festival in September. Captain Phillips (2013) debuts at the 17-day New York Film Festival on September 27, 2013 and marks Paul Greengrass’ return to the New York Film Festival, a decade after the premiere of Bloody Sunday back in 2002.

“At this point in his working life, Paul Greengrass has become a master of immersive reality-based narratives set along geopolitical fault lines – in this case, the 2009 seizure of the Maersk Alabama cargo ship by four Somali pirates,” said Kent Jones, the NYFF Director of Programming and Selection Committee Chair.“I’m excited that this tough, tense, real-life thriller, capped by the remarkable performances of Tom Hanks and four brilliant first-time Somali actors [Barkhad Abdi, Faysal Ahmed, Barkhad Abdirahman and Mahat M. Ali], is opening the 51st edition of the festival.”

As the opener for the New York Film Festival, CAPTAIN PHILLIPS aims to be a major player during the upcoming award season. Executive Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, Rose Kuo,  praises Tom Hank’s performance, noting that the actor is “…terrific at capturing the vulnerability, terror and heroism of the harrowing journey of Captain Phillips.”  Last year’s festival was opened by Ang Lee’s LIFE OF PIE, which went on to win him the directing prize at the Academy Awards.

The film stars two-time Academy Award winner Tom Hanks and is based on the true story of the 2009 hijacking of the U.S. cargo ship Maersk Alabama by a crew of Somali pirates. Paul Greengrass directed with Scott Rudin, Dana Brunetti, and Michael De Luca listed as producers. Sony Pictures will act as distributers.

The script is based on Captain Richard Phillips and Stephan Talty’s book, A Captain’s Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALS, and Dangerous Days at Sea..  The screenplay was penned by Billy Ray.

In April 2009, Somali pirates sized Phillips’ ship on the high seas off the coast of the Horn of Africa. The carrier ship held over 15,000 metric tons of cargo on board and was bound for Mombassa, Kenya. The stakes rose when hostages were taken from each faction and the U.S. Navy began trailing the ship.

We previously published these Captain Phillips articles:

Captain Phillips (2013) Movie Trailer

Captain Phillips also stars Catherine Keener, Max Martini, John Magaro, Christopher Stadulis, John Magaro, Christopher Stadulis, Chris Mulkey, Corey Johnson, David Warshofsky, Yul Vazquez, Angus MacInnes, Michael Chernus, Maria Dizzia, Roger Edwards, and Rey Hernandez.

Leave your thoughts on Captain Phillips opening the 2013 New York Film Festival and leave your thought on it below in the comments section. For more Captain Phillips news, photos, reviews, and videos, visit our Captain Phillips Page, subscribe to us by Email, “follow” us on Twitter, Tumblr, or “like” us on Facebook. Captain Phillips will be released in US theaters through Columbia Pictures on October 11, 2013.

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Kimberly Behzadi

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