*The Toronto International Film Festival has announced it will host the world premiere of director Dan Gilroy’s “Roman J. Israel, Esq.,” starring Denzel Washington in a dramatic transformation.
Set in the underbelly of the overburdened Los Angeles criminal court system, Washington stars as a driven, idealistic defense attorney whose life is upended when a turbulent series of events challenge the activism that has defined his career.
Colin Farrell costars as the ambitious, monied lawyer who recruits Roman to his firm. Carmen Ejogo, Lynda Gravatt, Amanda Warren, Hugo Armstrong, Sam Gilroy, Tony Plana, DeRon Horton and Amari Cheatom round out the cast.
Also written by Gilroy, “Roman J. Israel, Esq.” is the newest and final addition to TIFF’s Special Presentations programme, furthering Washington and Gilroy’s collaborative relationship with the Festival.
“The Toronto International Film Festival has a wonderful history with both Dan Gilroy and Denzel Washington,” said Cameron Bailey, Artistic Director of TIFF. “Three years ago TIFF had the honour of premiering Gilroy’s directorial debut, ‘Nightcrawler,’ at the Festival. In addition to previously screening ‘The Equalizer’ and presenting the World Premiere of ‘Training Day,’ which earned Washington an Oscar for Best Actor, the Washington-starring ‘The Magnificent Seven’ was our Opening Night film last year. A project that teams up both of these remarkable creators is one not to be missed.”
The project also reteams Washington with lead financiers MACRO and Bron Studios, who co-financed the actor’s last film, the Oscar-nominated “Fences.”
The 42nd Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 7 to 17, 2017.