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Annual Top Films Lists

Top 100 Most Anticipated Films of 2013: #15. Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years a Slave

Twelve Years a Slave

Director: Steve McQueen
Writer(s): McQueen & John Ridley
Producer(s): Anthony Katagas, Brad Pitt
U.S. Distributor: Rights Available
Cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender, Paul Dano, Sarah Paulson, Paul Giamatti, Michael Kenneth Williams, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Garret Dillahunt, Quvenzhané Wallis, Scoot McNairy

More of a fan of Shame on paper than on film, Sean Bobbitt’s camera work was flawless and Michael Fassbender once again went beyond the call of duty, but for me, Steve McQueen’s Hunger still resonates and would be the principle reason why his third feature ranks so well on this list. What will likely be compared to Quentin Tarantino’s Django upon its release, Twelve Years a Slave features one hell of a stellar cast.

Gist: After a New York state citizen (Chiwetel Ejiofor) is kidnapped and sold into brutal slavery, and made to work on a plantation in Louisiana in the 1800s, he desperately struggles to return home to his family.

Release Date: Filming took place last July, so this is ready for either Cannes (where Hunger got its debut) or Venice (where Shame premiered). It’ll be at TIFF for it’s North American debut.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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