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LA Film Festival to open with Colin Trevorrow’s ‘The Book of Henry’ premiere

Jaeden Lieberher, Jacob Tremblay and Naomi Watts star in Colin Trevorrow’s “The Book of Henry.”
(Alison Cohen Rosa / Focus Features)

The LA Film Festival will open with the world premiere of Colin Trevorrow’s “The Book of Henry,” starring Naomi Watts, Jaeden Lieberher, Jacob Tremblay, Sarah Silverman, Maddie Ziegler, Lee Pace and Dean Norris. Produced by Film Independent, the 2017 LA Film Festival is set for June 14-22, based at the Arclight Cinemas Culver City with events at other venues around the city.

“I’m honored to premiere ‘The Book of Henry’ at the LA Film Festival,” director Trevorrow said in a statement. “Film Independent plays such a vital role in supporting new storytellers, and I’m thrilled to be a part of this year’s exciting program.”

Written by Gregg Hurwitz, the film follows a single mother (Watts) and her child genius son (Lieberher) as he becomes determined to save a neighbor girl (Ziegler) from her abusive stepfather (Norris). The movie makes for an intriguing entry in Trevorrow’s evolving filmography, coming between the larger-scaled projects of “Jurassic World” and the upcoming “Star Wars: Episode IX.”

“We are so happy to be opening the Festival with ‘The Book of Henry,’ it’s a touching story about friendship, community and redefining family,” said festival director Jennifer Cochis, also in a statement. “’The Book of Henry’ embodies our mission via onscreen representation in highlighting a woman’s journey, with a powerful turn by Naomi Watts.”

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The festival also announced a gala screening of Dave McCary’s “Brigsby Bear,” starring Kyle Mooney, Claire Danes, Greg Kinnear, Michaela Watkins and Mark Hamill. In the film, Mooney plays a young man struggling to readjust when he is returned to his family after being abducted as a boy. He continues to be obsessed with the children’s television program his captors had created just for him, wanting to finish the story for himself.

On June 19, the festival is to feature the premiere of the first episode of Season 2 of the television series “Queen Sugar,” followed by a conversation with executive producer Ava DuVernay and female directors from the series. As with the first season of “Queen Sugar,” all the episodes in the second season are directed by women.

The festival’s full lineup is to be announced on May 9.

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Mark.Olsen@latimes.com

Twitter: @IndieFocus

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