Berlinale: Programme

Film file


The Party

Kurban Kassam (Producer), Cillian Murphy (Actor), Kristin Scott Thomas (Actress), Bruno Ganz (Actor), Sally Potter (Director, Screenwriter), Timothy Spall (Actor), Patricia Clarkson (Actress), Christopher Sheppard (Producer), Moderation: Jenni Zylka

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Janet has just been appointed minister in the shadow cabinet – the crowning achievement of her political career. She and her husband Bill plan to celebrate this with a few close friends. The guests arrive at their home in London but the party takes an unexpected turn for the worse when Bill suddenly makes two explosive revelations that shock Janet and everyone present to the core. Love, friendships, political convictions and a whole way of life are now called into question. Underneath their cultivated liberal left-wing surface people are seething. Their dispute leads to the big guns being brought out – even in a literal sense.
For her eighth theatrical feature British director and screenwriter Sally Potter, who last took part in the Berlinale Competition with Rage in 2009, has invited a stellar cast to join her party. Beginning as a subtly witty comedy replete with sharp-tongued dialogue, the film later veers off into tragedy. When life can no longer be controlled by reason, people will fight tooth and nail to protect their seemingly stable existence.

Sally Potter

United Kingdom 2017


71’ · Black/White


Patricia Clarkson (April)
Bruno Ganz (Gottfried)
Cherry Jones (Martha)
Emily Mortimer (Jinny)
Cillian Murphy (Tom)
Kristin Scott Thomas (Janet)
Timothy Spall (Bill)


Written and Directed by
Sally Potter
Alexey Rodionov
Anders Refn, Emilie Orsini
Jean-Paul Mugel
Production Design
Carlos Conti
Jane Petrie
Naomi Donne
Irene Lamb, Heidi Levitt
Line Producer
Alice Dawson
Christopher Sheppard, Kurban Kassam
Executive Producers
Jim Reeve, Robert Halmi Jr., John Giwa-Amu
Michael Manzi


Sally Potter

Born in London, UK, she made her first 8mm film when she was 14, followed by short experimental films. Since 1969, she has also worked as a performance artist, choreographer, dancer and musician. Her international breakthrough as a film director came in 1992 with her Oscar-nominated adaptation of Virginia Woolf's novel “Orlando”. Her films The Gold Diggers, The London Story, Yes, Rage and The Party have all screened at the Berlinale.


1969 Jerk; short film · Jerk; short film 1970 Play; short film · Play; short film 1971 Hors d’oeuvres; short film · Hors d’oeuvres; short film 1979 Thriller · Thriller 1983 The Gold Diggers · The Gold Diggers 1986 The London Story; short film · The London Story; short film 1987 Tears, Laughter, Fears and Rage; TV series · Tears, Laughter, Fears and Rage; TV series 1988 I Am an Ox, I Am a Horse, I Am a Man, I Am a Woman; documentary · Women Filmmakers in Russia; Documentary 1992 Orlando · Orlando 1996 The Tango Lesson (Tango-Fieber) · The Tango Lesson (Tango-Fieber) 2000 The Man Who Cried (In stürmischen Zeiten) · The Man Who Cried (In stürmischen Zeiten) 2004 Yes · Yes 2009 Rage · Rage 2012 Ginger & Rosa · Ginger & Rosa 2017 The Party · The Party 2020 The Roads Not Taken

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2020

Produced by

Adventure Pictures

World SalesGreat Point Media
London, UK
+44 203 873 0020

ICM Partners (US only)
New York, USA
+1 212 556 5600