Five Films From Award-Winning Filmmakers Announced

Five HIFF 2019 films were announced today, including the Sunday Centerpiece, three in the popular Spotlight section and one award winner in the World Cinema Narrative section.

Sunday Centerpiece film: In Fernando Meirelles’s THE TWO POPES, Anthony Hopkins and Jonathan Pryce star as Pope Benedict and the future Pope Francis as they attempt to navigate the future of the Catholic Church during a pivotal time.

Spotlight section: Academy Award-nominated director Terrence Malick’s A HIDDEN LIFE follows the life of a conscientious objector during World War II (August Diehl). In JOJO RABBIT, Academy Award-nominated director Taika Waititi also stars as an imaginary friend and Adolf Hitler to a young German boy (Roman Griffin Davis), whose mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a Jewish girl in their home. Academy Award-nominated director Noah Baumbach’s MARRIAGE STORY presents a couple’s divorce from both perspectives, starring Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver.

World Cinema Narrative section: PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE depicts two women whose relationship develops in unexpected ways in 1760 France. At this year’s Cannes Film Festival, writer/director Céline Sciamma was the first female director to receive the Queer Palm award, and she was also awarded Best Screenplay.

“The lineup for the 27th edition of the festival includes some of this year’s most anticipated films, as well as a number of exciting new voices,” said David Nugent, Artistic Director of the Hamptons International Film Festival.

Browse the HIFF27 Film Guide.

Sunday Centerpiece


East Coast Premiere
Director: Fernando Meirelles

From Fernando Meirelles, the Academy Award-nominated director of CITY OF GOD, and three-time Academy Award-nominated screenwriter Anthony McCarten, comes an intimate story of one of the most dramatic transitions of power in the last 2,000 years. Frustrated with the direction of the church, Cardinal Bergoglio (Jonathan Pryce) requests permission to retire in 2012 from Pope Benedict (Anthony Hopkins). Instead, facing scandal and self-doubt, the introspective Pope Benedict summons his harshest critic and future successor to Rome to reveal a secret that would shake the foundations of the Catholic Church. Behind Vatican walls, a struggle commences between both tradition and progress, guilt and forgiveness, as these two very different men confront elements from their pasts in order to find common ground and forge a future for a billion followers around the world. Inspired by true events.



Director: Terrence Malick
At the dawn of the second World War, the Edenic life of peasant farmer Franz Jägerstätter (August Diehl) and his family is disrupted by the intrusion of violence and hatred developing throughout their Austrian countryside village. As their town becomes further immersed in the Third Reich’s ideologies, Franz is called in for military training, where his refusal to swear allegiance to Hitler will force him into imprisonment and away from his family back home. Telling the true story of one of the many conscientious objectors who quietly pushed back against their countries’ advances toward extremism, filmmaker Terrence Malick (THE TREE OF LIFE, THE THIN RED LINE) returns to the vast canvas of his most celebrated work in this immensely powerful rumination on the call for a higher purpose in times of unimaginable turbulence.


Director: Taika Waititi
Growing up during the Second World War with his single mother (Scarlett Johansson), a young German boy spends his days idolizing his country’s tyrannical regime and taking comfort in the presence of his imaginary best-friend: Adolf Hitler (writer-director Taika Waititi). But the boy’s understanding of the world around him is rattled when he discovers a secret within his home. In Waititi’s outrageous “anti-hate satire,” the director weaponizes the irreverent, off-beat charms he previously lent to both independent comedies (WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS) and blockbuster superhero epics (THOR: RAGNAROK) in a wonderfully unexpected new direction. JOJO RABBIT is a deeply funny and surprisingly touching depiction of our capacity for both hate and love.


Director: Noah Baumbach
MARRIAGE STORY is Academy Award-nominated filmmaker Noah Baumbach’s incisive and compassionate look at a marriage breaking up and a family staying together. The film stars Scarlett Johansson and Adam Driver. Laura Dern, Alan Alda and Ray Liotta co-star.

Spotlight Section sponsored by



Director: Céline Sciamma
As the 18th century draws to a close, Marianne (Noémie Merlant), a young painter, is sent to an isolated island off the coast of Brittany to paint the wedding portrait of Héloise (Adèle Haenel), a young woman counting her last days of freedom before her arranged marriage to a man she has never met. As Marianne portrays herself as a companion to Héloise during the day and secretly paints the portrait meant to secure Héloise’s marriage at night, the two women slowly begin to find the tenderness in each other that their society has denied them. Visually rich and intellectually provocative, director Céline Sciamma’s Cannes Best Screenplay winner is a delicate and beautifully realized period piece.

World Cinema Narrative section sponsored by

The 27th annual Hamptons International Film Festival will take place Columbus Day Weekend: October 10 – 14, 2019. The Festival is pleased to welcome back returning Premiere Sponsor Audi, Lead Sponsors Delta, Altour and Netflix, Signature Sponsors Douglas Elliman and JP Morgan, and Official Media Sponsors WNBC, The East Hampton Star, and Purist Magazine.