The 2016 Summer Olympics kick off tonight in Rio de Janeiro with the Opening Ceremony. Per tradition, the Opening Ceremony will feature the famous Parade Of Nations, where the different competing countries enter the arena, as well as a theatrical production that aims to introduce the world to the culture, music and traditions of the host nation. This year, acclaimed Brazilian director Fernando Meirelles is handling directing duties for the ceremony, which should make cinephiles especially excited.
Meirelles is best known for the foreign film classic “City of God.” Released in 2002, the film is a violent drama about organized crime in the ghettoes of Rio, famously narrowing in on the battle between drug dealer Li’l Zé and vigilante-turned-criminal Knockout Ned. The drama picked up four Academy Award nominations, including Best Director, a rare feat for a foreign-language movie. Meirelles would later direct “The Constant Gardner,” which earned Rachel Weisz an Oscar for Supporting Actress, and the polarizing Cannes opener “Blindness.” His most recent film, “360,” opened in 2012.
The Opening Ceremony begins in Rio at 7pm local time, though American audiences will have to wait until NBC’s coverage begins at 7:30pm ET. NBC is editing the ceremony and presenting it on a delay. Viewers will be able to watch NBC’s version live on air via the network’s Rio video homepage, or they can use the NBC mobile app on their cellphones.
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The Rio Summer Olympics run through August 21.