LE MANS '66 - directed by James Mangold and starring Matt Damon and Christian Bale - will open worldwide in theatres this November. June 14th, on the eve of the Le Mans 24 hours race that attracts some 275K fans to the iconic circuit, fans will be treated to a worldwide exclusive, 10mn of footage of the film, screened at the Pathe theatre in the city center, and at the CGR Saint Saturnin in the suburbs of Le Mans
LE MANS '66, known as FORD v FERRARI in some countries including US, is based on the true story of two mavericks who teamed up in 1966 to challenge the long-time winner of the Le Mans 24H race, overriding human, technical and corporate obstacles, thanks to the strength of their passion, endurance and sheer obstinacy. High-speed car scenes are aplenty and the lucky viewers in Le Mans who get to sample the gripping sneak peek will have to wait five months to watch the full story unfold.
The exclusive footage will be screened at 7:15PM and 8:00PM in both cinemas. Free entry coupons will be available at the Pathe Le Mans and CGR Saint Saturnin ticket offices from Monday 10 June.
Media and racing professionals may attend a special showing at 4:15PM at the Pathe Le Mans with Jane Carter, marketing director of Twentieth Century Fox and Pierre Fillon, president of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO).
LE MANS '66 is set in the city and race organiser the Automobile Club de l’Ouestsupplied archive documents and props and advised on the historical elements of the script. However, the circuit, which no longer resembles that of the 1960s, was not used for filming. The set was located at Agua Dulce Airpark, a private airport in Santa Clarita, that features a half-mile airstrip that production used as racing track, alongside which were constructed three large segments of grandstands, the Ford and Ferrari pits, and the international press box.
The construction drawings for the huge set were based on over 300 archival photos, many of which were provided by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest.
Several scenes of LE MANS '66 were filmed in Le Mans in July 2018, including the scene where Ken Miles arrives in the provincial French town. “We wanted to capture that moment where Christian Bale’s character comes to Le Mans for the first time and is being transported into France in the 1960s,” recounts production designer Francois Audouy. “We took over a large square in the centre of town next to the old cathedral and basically created a three hundred and sixty-degree environment with hundreds of extras and period vehicles provided by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest.”
The trailer of the LE MANS '66 will be shown at regular intervals at the circuit on Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 June on the screens that relay the track action.
Registrations close on Monday at 7.00 pm.