Denzel Washington’s next will take ‘Flight’ at 2012 New York Film Festival

Paramount Pictures is celebrating their 100th Anniversary this year.  It’s a remarkable achievement for any company, but unfortunately the legendary studio hasn’t had a lot to celebrate.  After coming off arguably the most financially successful year in the studio’s history, 2012 may turn out to be one of the worst.  Their biggest “hits” to date have been a re-release of “Titanic” in 3D and Sacha Baron Cohen’s “The Dictator” (the later barely getting into the black).  The company distributed DreamWorks Animation’s hit “Madgascar 3” and got a financial percentage of the mammoth “Avengers” grosses thanks to a deal with Walt Disney Studios, but to say it’s been quiet on the Melrose lot is something of an understatement (we won’t even go into the big delays for “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” and “World War Z”). That’s all about to change, however.

The Film Society of Lincoln Center announced today that Robert Zemeckis’ new drama “Flight” will have the honor of closing the 2012 New York Film Festival on Sunday, Oct. 14.  The picture is Zemeckis’ first live action film since “Castaway” in 2000. The thriller stars Denzel Washington, John Goodman, Melissa Leo, Bruce Davidson, Don Cheadle and Kelly Reilly (“Sherlock Holmes”).

While many other films have been getting awards season attention, Paramount is quietly confident that “Flight” will resonate with critics, audiences and awards season voters.  In particular, Washington’s performance as an airline pilot dealing with the ramifications of an airplane crash is said to put him in best actor consideration.  The two-time Oscar winner is coming off February’s surprise box office hit “Safe House.”

Paramount also has the David Chase drama “Not Fade Away” set to open in limited release on Oct. 19.  That period drama, set in New Jersey, could also be a candidate to screen at the 50th New York Film Festival. Along with the box office slam dunk “Paranormal Activity 4” and DreamWorks Animations’ “Rise of the Guardians,” the folks at the Mountain have a bit more to look forward to this fall.

The 2012 New York Film Festival will be held between Sept. 28 and Oct. 14.