ROME (Reuters) - Luc Besson’s “The Lady,” inspired by Myanmar pro democracy leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, will open the International Rome Film Festival which runs from October 27 to November 4.
The movie, presented out of competition, recounts Suu Kyi’s political and personal struggles and stars Hollywood actress Michelle Yeoh, who was herself targeted by Myanmar authorities for playing in it.
“I was deeply inspired and touched by Aung San Suu Kyi’s personal story and ongoing fight for democracy, and hope that through this film her cause and voice will be better known and shared” said Frenchman Besson in the festival’s announcement.
The film is a love story about Suu Kyi and her late British husband Michael Aris, and details their long separation while Suu Kyi was detained in 1989.
Authorities in Myanmar blacklisted Yeoh for her role in the film, and deported her when she flew to the country in June.
The Malaysian actress, who regularly performs her own stunts in action movies, is best known for playing Chinese spy Wai Lin alongside Pierce Brosnan in the 1997 James Bond film “Tomorrow Never Dies.”
The 2011 event will be the sixth edition of the Rome festival, which is seeking to rival the much older Venice film festival held a few weeks earlier.
Writing by Catherine Hornby; editing by Patricia Reaney