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THE DARJEELING LIMITED Closes 51st London Film Festival


Thursday, November 1---------Hopping from its World Premiere at the Venice Film Festival to its Opening Night Gala last month at the New York Film Festival, the Wes Anderson film THE DARJEELING LIMITED closes the Times BFI 51st London Film Festival tonight.  The film will open theatrically in the UK on November 23rd via distributor Twentienth Century FoxTHE DARJEELING LIMITED presents the fractured fable of three American brothers who have not spoken to each other in a year, who set off on a train voyage across India with a plan to find themselves and bond with each other . Their "spiritual quest", however, veers rapidly off-course and they eventually find themselves stranded alone in the middle of the desert. From that moment on, a new and unplanned journey begins. 

The film features a stellar cast, including Adrien Brody, Owen Wilson and Jason Schwartzman as the brotherly trio. The film has received mostly positive reviews in its theatrical opening in North America this past weekend. Much ink has been generated by the presence of Owen Wilson, who has had to sit out the publicity tours for the film due to a suspected suicide attempt last month. The fact that Wilson plays a manic depressive who has (perhaps intentionally) crashed his motorcycle presents an intriguing puzzle  about whether the part influenced the actor, or the actor influenced the part. Wes AndersonWes Anderson

The director Wes Anderson, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Roman Coppola and Jason Schwarzman, is one of Hollywood's most idiosyncratic young filmmakers. He has had a longstanding relationship with both Owen and Luke Wilson, having co-written the films BOTTLE ROCKET (1996, his directorial debut), RUSHMORE (1998) and THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS (2001) with the brother acting duo. Anderson also produced, wrote and directed THE LIFE AQUATIC WITH STEVE ZISSOU, which also starred Owen Wilson, in an eclectic cast that included Bill Murray, Anjelica Huston, Willem Dafoe and Cate Blanchett.  In 2005, he also produced the acclaimed domestic drama THE SQUID AND THE WHALE, starring Jeff Daniels and Laura Linney. He is currently in production on THE FANTASTIC MR. FOX, an animated comedy featuring the voices of George Clooney, Bill Murray, Cate Blanchett, Jason Schwarzman and Anjelica Houston, which Twentienth Century Fox will release next year.

Last evening at the National Film Theater, the director Wes Anderson was interviewed by London Film Festival Artistic Director Sandra Hebron, in what was certainly a lively discussion (sorry folks, I was not there in person......I left London on Monday for New York, tant pis). Anderson is in the midst of a European and international press tour as THE DARJEELING LIMITED hits screens around the world. The film opened in the United States on September 29th to mainly positive reviews and has been a consistent box office contender for the past month.

Sandy Mandelberger, London Film Festival Dailies Editor 

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