Jóhann Jóhannsson's 'Last and First Men' to Premiere at the Berlin Film Festival

It's the late composer's first and last directorial feature
Jóhann Jóhannsson's 'Last and First Men' to Premiere at the Berlin Film Festival
Photo: Jónatan Grétarsson
While Jóhann Jóhannsson's soundtrack work has received Oscar recognition, the late composer will now make a posthumous return to the director's chair at this year's Berlin Film Festival.

Jóhannsson's Last and First Men, which he directed himself, will premiere at the festival's 70th edition, taking place from February 20 to March 1. The film is narrated by Tilda Swinton and was shot on 16mm black-and-white film with Norwegian cinematographer Sturla Brandth Grøvlen.

The film's Berlin Film Festival premiere follows an initial debut at the 2017 Manchester International Festival, at which Jóhannsson's visuals featured live accompaniment from the BBC Philharmonic. Last and First Men is adapted from the final two chapters of Olaf Stapledon's 1930 science-fiction novel of the same name.

Jóhannsson was nominated for back-to-back Oscars in 2015 and 2016, for his score work with James Marsh's The Theory of Everything and Denis Villeneuve's Sicario, respectively. His final score for Panos Cosmatos's Mandy received a posthumous release in 2018.

Jóhannsson passed away on February 9, 2018, in Berlin at age 48. His Fordlândia album was treated to a vinyl reissue last year.