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And Stewart has introduced new competitive sections to the program to raise the profile of the festival’s awards for best picture, best first feature, best documentary and best British newcomer. The goal is to make London a more important stop for movies during Hollywood’s ever-lengthening awards season.

“The September-October period is where the films looking for awards recognition really break,” Stewart said. If they can break in London, so much the better.



Jill Lawless can be reached at