TCM Announces Full 2021 Virtual Film Fest Lineup

Last month, we told you about the second of TCM’s virtual, stay-at-home film festivals. Given the world and safety, they’ve chosen again to forego the in-person TCM Classic Film Festival for another year in favor of one broadcast on the cable network. The first one was a lot of fun, and had a robust lineup. This year’s adds the promise of even more movies, with an on-demand selection available on HBO Max. Now the good folks at Turner Classic Movies have announced the full lineup of movies you’ll be able to watch on from Thursday May 6 until Sunday May 9.

The list of movies this year is robust, featuring over 100 movies and more than 30 special guests. One of the best things about TCMFF is the sheer choice of movies, usually at least four at any given programming slot. While the broadcast lineup is great, it can be limiting. With the inclusion of the HBO Max, on-demand section, each viewer can truly make it their own.

Tony and Maria sing in West Side Story (1961)

Warner Bros.

We’re not going to list every movie and event here, but you can see the full schedule and available HBO Max movies here and here. But some of the weekend’s highlights include:

  • Opening Night on Thursday, May 6 at 8pm ET features the 60th anniversary screening of West Side Story (1961) with stars Rita Moreno, George Chakiris and Russ Tamblyn giving new and exclusive interviews. Opening Night will premiere simultaneously on TCM and HBO Max
  • The Masters collection on HBO Max, featuring interviews with directors Barry Levinson (Good Morning, Vietnam) and Barbara Kopple (Harlan County, USA)
  • Debbie Allen introduces Fame (1980) and sits down for an exclusive interview
  • Michael Douglas introduces One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975) on HBO Max
  • Jacqueline Bisset introduces Bullitt (1968) on TCM and on HBO Max
  • The world broadcast premiere of Bill Morrison’s latest short film on TCM, let me come in (2021), featuring decayed film reels from the lost German silent film Pawns of Passion (1928) and co-presented by the Los Angeles Opera
  • A tribute to iconic comedian Martin Short with Clifford (1994) and Innerspace (1987) on HBO Max
  • SF Sketchfest Presents a table read of Ed Wood’s Plan 9 From Outer Space (1959) on TCM, adapted by comedian Dana Gould and featuring Maria Bamford, Bobcat Goldthwait, Oscar Nuñez, Laraine Newman, Bob Odenkirk, David Koechner, Janet Varney, Jonah Ray, Paul F. Tompkins, Gary Anthony Williams, Baron Vaughn, Deborah Baker Jr. and Kat Aagesen

Clifford, huh?

In addition to these, some I’m personally looking forward to checking out include: The Man Who Would Be King at 5:15pm on Friday May 7; Sam Peckinpah’s Ride the High Country on Saturday May 8 at 10am; Victim and It’s Always Fair Weather on HBO Max. Plus, between TCM and HBO Max there are several movies from the director-writer pair of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger which I cannot recommend highly enough.

The logo for the TCM Classic Film Festival Home Edition 2021.


Yes, it’s not the same as an in-person film festival, but as always TCMFF brings the heavy hitters and underseen gems. And watching from home means we can all enjoy!

Kyle Anderson is the Senior Editor for Nerdist. You can find his film and TV reviews here. Follow him on Twitter!

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