The 68th London Fim Festival has announced that Steve McQueen’s ‘Blitz’ will be this year’s Opening Night Gala and the movie’s World Premiere of the Apple Original Film.

The film follows the epic journey of George (Elliott Heffernan), a 9-year-old boy in World War II London whose mother Rita (Saoirse Ronan) sends him to safety in the English countryside. George, defiant and determined to return home to Rita and his grandfather Gerald (Paul Weller) in East London, ensues on an adventure, only to find himself in immense peril, while a distraught Rita searches for her missing son. 

The film stars Academy and BAFTA Award-nominee Saoirse Ronan and newcomer Elliott Heffernan, with Harris Dickinson, Benjamin Clementine, Kathy Burke, Paul Weller, Stephen Graham, Leigh Gill, Mica Ricketts, CJ Beckford, Alex Jennings, Joshua McGuire, Hayley Squires, Erin Kellyman, and Sally Messham rounding out the cast. 

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McQueen’s Lammas Park produces alongside Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner of Working Title Films, Arnon Milchan, Yariv Milchan and Michael Schaefer for New Regency, with producers Anita Overland and Adam Somner.

McQueen stated  “Blitz is a movie about Londoners. It honours the spirit of what and how Londoners endured during the blitz, but also explores the true representation of people in London, while at its core is the story of a working-class family desperate to be reunited during times of war,” said McQueen. “I could not be more thrilled that the BFI London Film Festival have invited us to open this year’s festival, and to celebrate the World Premiere of ‘Blitz’ in my hometown.” 

The 68th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express takes place from Wednesday 9 October – Sunday 20 October, 2024.