Jane Campion‘s The Power of the Dog has been named as the Centerpiece Selection for the 59th New York Film Festival. The historical drama, adapted from the 1967 book by Thomas Savage, stars Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons, and Benedict Cumberbatch, and was recently selected to screen at this year’s Venice Film Festival. A new first-look image released for the film, seen above, also reveals Cumberbatch‘s character Phil. The Power of the Dog will be available to stream on Netflix later this year.
“I am very honored that The Power of the Dog has been selected as the centerpiece gala at this year’s New York Film Festival,” said Campion in a statement. “Public screenings we long took for granted feel exceptional now, so it is going to be a very emotional and joyous experience for me and my team to be there and present the film to such a film-celebrating audience.”
Four of Campion’s previous films—Sweetie, An Angel at My Table, The Piano, and Holy Smoke —have been official selections of NYFF, and in 2017, Film at Lincoln Center presented Jane Campion’s Own Stories, a retrospective of her film and television work.
“We couldn’t be happier to welcome Jane Campion back to the festival with one of her very best films,” said Dennis Lim, the NYFF director of programming. “Everything about The Power of the Dog is alive with surprise: its narrative turns, its rich characterizations, its complex ideas about masculinity and repression. It will introduce many to the work of the under-appreciated novelist Thomas Savage, but it also reminds us of what cinema can do as a medium for accessing and expressing inner life.”
The Power of the Dog is scheduled to have its world premiere at the 78th Venice International Film Festival in September. It will also screen at the 2021 New York Film Festival on October 1. It will be released on Netflix at a later date this year.
Here’s the official synopsis for The Power of the Dog:
Adapted from a 1967 cult novel by Thomas Savage that was notoriously ahead of its time in depicting repressed sexuality, The Power of the Dog excavates the emotional torment experienced at a Montana cattle ranch in the 1920s. Here, melancholy young widow Rose (Kirsten Dunst) has come to live with her sensitive new husband, George (Jesse Plemons), though their lives are increasingly complicated by the erratic, potentially violent behavior of his sullen and bullying brother, Phil (Benedict Cumberbatch), whose mistrust of both Rose and her misfit son (Kodi Smit-McPhee) leads to tragic consequences. Mirroring the unpredictable story turns, Campion crafts a film of unexpected cadences and rhythms, and her daring is matched every step of the way by her extraordinary, fully immersed cast and a mercurial, destabilizing score by Jonny Greenwood.