Coen brothers film ‘True Grit’ to open Berlinale

Coen brothers film 'True Grit' to open Berlinale
Photo: Paramount Pictures
The Oscar-winning fraternal duo Joel and Ethan Coen are to open the 61st Berlin International Film Festival next year with their remake of the classic John Wayne western “True Grit,” organisers announced Wednesday.

The film, starring Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin and newcomer Hailee Steinfeld, will open the festival on February 10.

The brothers had their cult comedy “The Big Lebowski,” also starring Bridges, in competition at the 1998 festival.

“Joel and Ethan Cohen stand for first-class American independent cinema,” said festival director Dieter Kosslick. “With their soft spot for irony, and oblique characters and stories, they have consistently dazzled the public.”

“True Grit,” making its world premier at the festival, will also be in the festival competition. It is a remake of the 1969 John Wayne western classic and tells the story of 14-year-old Mattie (Steinfeld), who is trying to find her father’s murderer (Brolin).

When the authorities won’t help her, she hires the rough, drunken Marshall “Rooster” Cogburn (Bridges) to help her. They are joined by Texas Ranger LaBoeuf (Damon) as they enter Indian territory on the hunt for the killer.

The Coen brothers are among the most celebrated film makers of their generation, with a diverse body of work starting with the noir thriller “Blood Simple” and ranging to the comedy “Raising Arizona,” the offbeat, Oscar-winning crime-drama “Fargo” and their adaptation of Cormac McCarthy’s novel, “No Country for Old Men,” which also won an Academy Award and starred Brolin.

They typically write, direct and produce their films jointly.

The Local/dw

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