HIFF 2016 to Open with ‘Loving,’ Close with ‘American Pastoral’

The 24th Annual Hamptons International Film Festival is pleased to announce two Premieres to bookend the festival. HIFF 2016 will open with LOVING, directed by Jeff Nichols, and close with AMERICAN PASTORAL, directed by and starring Ewan McGregor

“We are thrilled to have such powerful and thought-provoking films as LOVING and AMERICAN PASTORAL as our Opening and Closing Nights at the festival this year,” said HIFF Artistic Director David Nugent. “Jeff Nichols and Ewan McGregor are two tremendously talented filmmakers with impressive careers and we look forward to screening their projects.”



Opening Night: October 6 | US Premiere
From acclaimed writer/director Jeff Nichols (MUD, TAKE SHELTER), LOVING celebrates the real-life courage and commitment of an interracial couple, Richard and Mildred Loving (Joel Edgerton and Ruth Negga), who were arrested after eloping in 1958. With their marriage deemed unlawful, they were forced to plead guilty and move out of their home state of Virginia.

After five years in exile—and with the Civil Rights movement in full swing—they decided to fight back. The unassuming yet determined couple appealed their case all the way to the Supreme Court and changed history with the landmark Loving v. Virginia decision.

Featuring two riveting performances at its core: as the aptly-named Lovings, Edgerton and Negga exude a quiet certainty about their right to love each other, against all odds. The film also stars Nick Kroll and Michael ShannonFocus Features will open LOVING in limited release on November 4, expanding across the country later that month.

Writer and director Jeff Nichols and Actor Joel Edgerton will join us at the festival. The HIFF 2016 Opening Night film, presented by Delta Air Lines and Altour International, will screen on October 6.

Delta-150  Altour-150



Closing Night: October 10 | New York Premiere
Ewan McGregor’s directorial debut is a searing adaptation of Philip Roth’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, which recreates the tumultuous social and political atmosphere of the late ’60s–early’70s. Seymour “Swede” Levov (Ewan McGregor), a former star athlete, and his beauty queen wife (Jennifer Connelly) live an idyllic life in a quaint New Jersey town.

Their lives are irrevocably changed when their daughter Merry (Dakota Fanning) becomes radicalized. The “perfect family” illusion is shattered when Merry disappears after being accused of committing a violent act and Swede dedicates his life to finding her and reuniting his family.

A complex and layered insight into the precariousness of the American Dream, AMERICAN PASTORAL is a subversive and provocative experience. The film also stars David Strathairn, Rupert Evans and Valorie Curry. Lionsgate will open the film in limited release on October 21.

Actress Dakota Fanning will join us at the festival. The HIFF 2016 Closing Night film, sponsored by Silvercup Studios, screens Monday, October 10.


“Every year the festival aims to bring topical, timely and entertaining programming to our audiences, and our Opening and Closing Night films both fit this bill,” said HIFF Executive Director Anne Chaisson. “LOVING and AMERICAN PASTORAL will showcase the filmmaking talent and programming that we strive to bring to the festival attendees each fall.”

Join us at HIFF 2016: October 6–10. Passes and packages are on sale now. Individual tickets go on sale September 26.