AFI announced today that Academy Award® winner Jane Campion’s highly anticipated film THE POWER OF THE DOG will screen at the TCL Chinese Theatre on November 11 as part of AFI FEST 2021. Starring Benedict Cumberbatch as a brutally beguiling rancher, this psychological drama set in the American West was written and directed by Campion and won the Silver Lion for Best Direction at this year’s Venice Film Festival. The film also stars Emmy® nominee Kristen Dunst, Emmy® nominee Jesse Plemons, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Emmy® nominee Frances Conroy, Thomasin McKenzie, Geneviève Lemon and Academy Award® winner Keith Carradine.
The film joins the previously announced Red Carpet Premieres, which include the World Premiere of tick, tick…BOOM! directed by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award® winner Lin-Manuel Miranda, KING RICHARD directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green, the World Premiere of Academy Award® winner Halle Berry’s directorial debut BRUISED, the World Premiere of Academy Award® winner Benjamin Cleary’s feature directorial debut SWAN SONG and PARALLEL MOTHERS directed by Academy Award® winner Pedro Almodóvar. The full program to this year’s film festival can be found here. Individual tickets for in-person and virtual screenings and events are available on FEST.AFI.com.
With health and safety being top priority, AFI FEST 2021 will require all festival-goers who attend in-person events and/or screenings to be fully vaccinated. AFI members receive exclusive discounts and benefits to the film festival. To become an AFI member, visit AFI.com/join/.
ABOUT THE POWER OF THE DOG
Severe, pale-eyed, handsome, Phil Burbank (Benedict Cumberbatch) is brutally beguiling. All of Phil’s romance, power and fragility is trapped in the past and in the land: He can castrate a bull calf with two swift slashes of his knife; he swims naked in the river, smearing his body with mud. He is a cowboy as raw as his hides. The year is 1925. The Burbank brothers are wealthy ranchers in Montana. At the Red Mill restaurant on their way to market, the brothers meet Rose (Kirsten Dunst), the widowed proprietress, and her impressionable son Peter (Kodi Smit-McPhee). Phil behaves so cruelly he drives them both to tears, revelling in their hurt and rousing his fellow cowhands to laughter – all except his brother George (Jesse Plemons), who comforts Rose then returns to marry her. As Phil swings between fury and cunning, his taunting of Rose takes an eerie form – he hovers at the edges of her vision, whistling a tune she can no longer play. His mockery of her son is more overt, amplified by the cheering of Phil’s cowhand disciples. Then Phil appears to take the boy under his wing. Is this latest gesture a softening that leaves Phil exposed, or a plot twisting further into menace?
Learn more at FEST.AFI.com.