Film at Lincoln Center has announced Bradley Cooper’s “Maestro” as the Spotlight Gala of the 61st New York Film Festival at David Geffen Hall on October 2nd. Making its North American premiere, “Maestro” joins the previously announced Opening Night, Centerpiece, and Closing Night films in the NYFF slate of gala presentations.
In his directorial follow-up to “A Star Is Born,” Bradley Cooper dramatizes legendary musician Leonard Bernstein’s public and private lives with sensitivity, visual ingenuity, and symphonic splendor. Coasting on the boundless energy of its subject’s runaway genius, “Maestro” transports the viewer back to a vividly re-created postwar New York, when Bernstein (Cooper) began his stratospheric rise to international fame as both a conductor and composer and when he first met Felicia (Carey Mulligan), the actress whom he would marry and spend his life with. “Maestro” is a tender, often intensely emotional film about the different faces one wears when living in the public eye, depicting the complicated yet devoted decades-spanning relationship between Leonard and Felicia. Fueled by Cooper and Mulligan’s perfectly matched duet of towering performances, Matthew Libatique’s balletic cinematography, and, of course, Bernstein’s thrilling music, “Maestro” is a tour de force for its director. This will be a Netflix release.
“‘Maestro‘ is a bravura achievement for its director and star, a work of conviction and imagination that does justice to the brilliance and complexity of its subject,” said Dennis Lim, Artistic Director, New York Film Festival. “We are honored to have Bradley Cooper’s enthralling film as a gala presentation at this year’s festival, and doubly so to be showing it in a venue that is synonymous with Leonard Bernstein.”
“The New York Film Festival is proud to present the North American debut of ‘Maestro,’ Bradley Cooper’s tour de force film about the life of renowned conductor, composer, and musician Leonard Bernstein,” said Lesli Klainberg, President, Film at Lincoln Center. “It is particularly significant that this is the first film to premiere in the new David Geffen Hall, home of the New York Philharmonic, which Bernstein famously led for over a decade, and where NYFF began in 1963. This state-of-the-art presentation was realized with the collaboration of our colleagues at the New York Philharmonic and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and supported by our friends at Netflix and Dolby.”
The New York Film Festival audience will experience “Maestro” with the ultra-vivid colors of Dolby Vision and the immersive sound of Dolby Atmos. A Dolby Vision projection system and a Dolby Atmos sound system will be installed by Dolby and its technical partners in David Geffen Hall specifically for the “Maestro” premiere, transforming the venue into a state-of-the-art cinema equipped with Dolby’s cutting-edge technology for the one-night-only experience.
The complete Spotlight lineup will be announced soon. Explore NYFF61’s Main Slate lineup here. The NYFF Spotlight selection committee, chaired by Dennis Lim, includes Florence Almozini, Justin Chang, K. Austin Collins, and Rachel Rosen.
Presented by Film at Lincoln Center, the New York Film Festival highlights the best in world cinema and takes place September 29th–October 15th, 2023. An annual bellwether of the state of cinema that has shaped film culture since 1963, the festival continues an enduring tradition of introducing audiences to bold and remarkable works from celebrated filmmakers as well as fresh new talent.
Secure your seats to “Maestro” with Premier or VIP Festival Passes, limited quantities on sale now, with discounts through August 17th only. “Maestro” single tickets will go on sale to the general public on Tuesday, September 19th at noon ET, with pre-sale access for FLC Members and Premier and VIP Pass holders prior to this date. Become an FLC Member by Friday, August 18th, to secure pre-sale access. NYFF61 press and industry accreditation is now open through August 28th.
What do you think of this announcement for this year’s New York Film Festival? What else do you think will be announced for the Currents, Revivals, Spotlight, and Talks sections? Are you planning on going? Please let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or on our Twitter account.