Oscar watchers were mildly surprised when the Clint Eastwood-directed 'J. Edgar' was left off the festival premiere rosters in Toronto, Telluride, New York and Venice, and now it appears there was a reason: Clint was saving himself for the American Film Institute! 'J. Edgar' has been tapped as the AFI Fest's opening night premiere event. 'J. Edgar' - which stars Leonardo DiCaprio as controversial FBI director J. Edgar Hoover and Armie Hammer as his right-hand man and possible lover Clyde Tolson - will kick off the 25th AFI Fest on Nov. 3, six days before it comes out in limited release in New York and Los Angeles. (The wide release will happen on Nov. 11, two days after that; jot these dates down on your calendars to avoid confusion.)
"Clint Eastwood is an American icon – one whose work as a director, actor, producer and composer not only stands the test of time, but also continues to add new, rich chapters with each passing year," Bob Gazzale, President and CEO of the American Film Institute said in the press release announcing the 'J. Edgar' premiere. "What a gift it is to be going to the movies when Clint Eastwood is making them, and what an honor it is for the American Film Institute to premiere his latest contribution to America's cultural legacy."
Last year, the AFI Fest premiered 'The Fighter,' which found its way to seven Oscar nominations and two wins. Here's guessing Clint and Warner Bros. are hoping for some similar magic.
The AFI Fest runs from Nov. 3 to Nov. 10. Click here for details.