BFI brings Robert Altman’s NASHVILLE (1975) back to UK cinemas from 25 June
Robert Altman’s 1975 masterpiece NASHVILLE, shot on location in country music’s capital, is to be re-released by BFI Distribution in selected cinemas UK-wide from 25 June 2021in a glorious 4K restoration, screening for the very first time in the UK. The film will have an extended run at BFI Southbank – a highlight of the forthcoming Robert Altman retrospective season. ROBERT ALTMAN: AMERICAN OUTSIDER, running 17 May – 31 July, will feature screenings of 34 films from Altman’s remarkable career, spanning five decades.
With an Oscar-winning song and BAFTA-winning soundtrack, critically acclaimed and highly influential, NASHVILLE stars a huge ensemble cast of well-known faces playing 24 main characters, including Lily Tomlin, Keith Carradine, Geraldine Chaplin, Karen Black, Shelley Duval, Ronee Blakley, Henry Gibson, Barbara Harris, Michael Murphy and Ned Beatty. There are cameo appearances from Elliott Gould, Julie Christie, musician Vassar Clements and TV news anchor man Howard K. Smith who all play themselves.
The story takes place in Nashville, Tennessee where the Replacement Party launches a campaign for its Presidential candidate, Hal Phillip Walker, by setting up a large rally with a concert featuring the most popular country and gospel entertainers.
A magnum opus offering a sceptical commentary on modern America, NASHVILLE follows a host of colourful characters – musicians, agents, fans, journalists, politicians, locals – over a five-day period in the city’s musical calendar. The narrative, seemingly as chaotic as reality, is supremely subtle and complex in its interweaving of events, relationships, themes and moods; the tone is at once affectionate and scathing; the songs are musically spot-on; the film’s sheer scale, ambition, wit and intelligence are exhilarating.
Geoff Andrew, BFI programmer-at-large, who has programmed the Robert Altman season, concludes:“Beautifully performed, it’s one of the greatest films of the last 50 years – and one that could probably not get made now.”
NASHVILLE won the Oscar for Best Original Song, for Keith Carradine’s “I’m Easy”, and was nominated for Best Picture and Best Director, with both Lily Tomlin and Ronee Blakley nominated for Best Supporting Actress. “I’m Easy” also won at the Golden Globe Awards, where the film had 10 more nominations; it remains the film with the most Golden Globe nominations ever. It won Best Soundtrack at the BAFTAs with another four nominations including Best Supporting Actress for Gwen Welles and Ronee Blakley, Most Promising Newcomer to Leading Film Roles for Lily Tomlin and Best Screenplay for Joan Tewkesbury.
Link to film information and screening venues: www.bfi.org.uk/releases