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Colin Trevorrow Opens LA Film Festival With ‘Book of Henry’: ‘This Festival Matters’

Variety logo Variety 6/15/2017 Dave McNary
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Colin Trevorrow was thinking of 2012 at Wednesday night’s world premiere of Focus Features’ “The Book of Henry” at the Arclight Culver City to open the 23rd LA Film Festival.

“My first film ‘Safety Not Guaranteed’ premiered at Sundance and was the closing night of the Sydney Film Festival and it gave me the opportunities that I have now,” he said on the red carpet. “So I want to support other filmmakers, especially at this festival which pushes new diverse perspectives. We really need those now because we lock ourselves into the pattern of doing the same thing over and over instead of taking a risk and staring over the edge.”

Trevorrow, whose last film was “Jurassic World” and whose next is “Star Wars: Episode IX,” explained that he had asked festival director Jennifer Cochis for the opening slot and requested Focus to forego a New York premiere. “This festival matters,” he told the audience.

Screenwriter Gregg Hurwitz was in a reflective mood on the red carpet, noting that he had started work on the script in 1999 when he was 24. “I’ve been with it longer than I’ve been married and I wanted to keep that drive of it being a kid with the first Final Draft program,” he added.

Cast members Jacob Tremblay, Maddie Ziegler, Dean Norris, Jaeden Lieberher and Bobby Moynihan attended the premiere. Naomi Watts sent a video greeting and noted that she was filming in Budapest.

Ziegler, who is making her feature film debut at 14 after becoming famous as a dancer, noted that she was struck by how different her role is from herself: “The character I play is so fragile which is so not like me,” she said.

“I loved being in this film,” said Moynihan, who plays a restaurant manager. “I got to play an adult, which is rare for me, instead of being the crazy guy.”

“The Book of Henry” opens in theaters on Friday.

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