Maggie Smith and Pauline Collins in QuartetDustin Hoffman makes his directorial debut with Quartet, which premiered at TIFF to excellent early reviews, and continued its festival circuit at the BFI London Film Festival this month.

With an all-star cast led by Dame Maggie Smith, who you’ll no doubt recognise from her most recent Emmy-winning role in Downton Abbey, the first trailer for the film had landed online a little earlier in the year, but was swiftly taken down from the Internet, and now Momentum have officially given us its debut.

“Lifelong friends Wilf (Billy Connolly) and Reggie (Tom Courtenay), together with former colleague Cissy (Pauline Collins), are residents of Beecham House, a home for retired opera singers. Every year on Giuseppe Verdi’s birthday, the residents unite to give a concert to raise funds for their home. But when Jean Horton (Maggie Smith), a former grande dame of the opera fallen on hard times, also Reg gie’s ex-wife and the fourth and most celebrated member of their former quartet, moves into the home to everyone’s surprise, the plans for this year’s concert start to unravel.”

Michael Gambon, Billy Connolly, Tom Courtenay, Pauline Collins, and Sheridan Smith star alongside Smith as part of the promising ensemble, with Hoffman directing from a script by the Oscar-winning screenwriter/playwright, Ronald Harwood (The Pianist, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly), who adapts his own play.

Quartet will be given a limited release in the US on 28th December, in an Oscar-qualifying position. It will then open here in the UK on 1st January, before going wide in the US on 4th January. In the meantime, here’s the wonderful first official trailer. Enjoy.

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