The lineup for the Times BFI 52nd London Film Festival has been confirmed this morning.

Speaking in the Odeon West End, BFI artistic director Sandra Hebron revealed that the festival will open with the world premiere of Ron Howard's Frost/Nixon, an adaptation of Peter Morgan's stage play about the influential 60s television interviews.

Danny Boyle's Slumdog Millionaire has already been announced as the closing night gala screening for the festival, which takes place over a fortnight in October.

The 52nd festival - which coincides with the BFI's 75th anniversary - is to feature some 15 world premieres, as well as 14 international premieres and 20 European debuts, while the programme also includes a wealth of short films and master classes and lectures from the likes of Michael Sheen, Charlie Kaufman, Rachel Weisz, Benicio Del Toro and Jessica Alba, among others.

BFI director Amanda Nevil paid tribute to the late Anthony Minghella in her opening address, as well as espousing the importance of creativity within the film industry as technological advancements increase.

Other gala screenings confirmed by Hebron included Steven Soderbergh's biopic Che - for which del Toro won the best actor award at Cannes - Oliver Stone's political satire W, Steve Coogan comedy Hamlet 2 and Woody Allen's latest romance, Vicky Cristina Barcelona.

Films such as Lions for Lambs, Juno and Into the Wild all featured at last year's event while Wes Anderson's The Darjeeling Limited closed the festival.

The Times BFI 52nd London Film Festival takes place between October 15th and October 30th at cinemas across the capital.

10/09/2008 12:34:49