David Tennant's film about RD Laing to close Glasgow Film Festival


Scots actor David Tennant will bring the curtain down on this year’s Glasgow Film Festival (GFF).

The former Dr Who star will attend the closing gala on 26 February for the world premiere of his latest film, Mad To Be Normal.

Also starring Michael Gambon and Gabriel Byrne, the film is about the life of Scots psychiatrist RD Laing.

The 13th festival opens on 15 February with a screening of Handsome Devil, starring Sherlock actor Andrew Scott.

‘Stunning performance’

GFF co-director Allison Gardner said: “I am so excited to share the news about our great opening and closing galas.

“Handsome Devil is a real crowd-pleaser with a joyous spirit that makes it a perfect film to launch the festival.

“David Tennant gives an absolutely stunning performance as RD Laing in Mad To Be Normal and it seems only fitting that Glasgow should have the honour of hosting the premiere of a film about one of the city’s most complex, charismatic figures.”

RD Laing was seen as a radical when he set up a medication-free community for psychiatric patients in London in the 1960s.

The film also features Elizabeth Moss who starred in Mad Men and Girl, Interrupted.

A documentary series about influential art writer John Berger, titled The Seasons in Quincy, has also been added to the GFF schedule after his death on 2 January.

Indy music

The result of a five-year project by Tilda Swinton, Colin MacCabe and Christopher Roth in collaboration with the composer Simon Fisher Turner, the documentary is made with four films on different aspects of Berger’s life and will be shown on 24 and 25 February.

The full festival programme is to be detailed later in January but events already announced include a live music performance involving Alex Kapranos and Stuart Braithwaite.

The ABC show will follow a special screening of documentary Lost In France, looking at the rise of Scotland’s independent music scene and bands such as Mogwai, Arab Strap and Franz Ferdinand.

The 2017 GFF programme also celebrates Canadian cinema and the role of women in thrillers.

Glasgow City Council leader Frank McAveety said: “GFF is a highlight on the city’s cultural calendar.

“The opening gala is always an exciting event, heralding the beginning of 11 packed days of film in the UK’s cinema city.

“It’s particularly great to see that a famous Glaswegian will be depicted on screen for this year’s closing gala film.”

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