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Angelina Jolie’s ‘First They Killed My Father’ Opens at Telluride

Angelina Jolie’s newest film venture, “First They Killed My Father”, premiered at the Telluride Film Festival today, September 2, to a very positive reception.

Jolie is the film’s director, and weaves an intense story focusing on the horrifying real-life childhood experience of Loung Ung, who grew up under the Khmer Rouge’s genocidal regime in Cambodia in the 1970s.

Ung is now a human rights activist, and film star Jolie worked with Ung to adapt her memoir for the screen. Angelina Jolie told various newspapers that her adopted son Maddox, who is Cambodian by birth, encouraged her to take on this project. Jolie has a special connection to the country, legally solidified with her US-Cambodian dual citizenship.

Ted Sarandos, the Greek-American COO of Netflix, is one of the top producers for this film, along with Cambodian documentarian Rithy Panh. “First They Killed My Father” is rumored to become an Oscar contender during awards season. Since the film is shot in Cambodia and in a foreign language, with Cambodians working both in front of the camera and behind the scenes, it is likely the film will be eligible for the “Foreign Language Film” category.

Either way, the film will be distributed by Sarandos’ company Netflix both theatrically and online on September 15, after an additional screening at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival. You can watch the full trailer above.


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