By Jeff Labrecque
Updated September 20, 2012 at 05:14 PM EDT
Credit: David James
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Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln will have its official world premiere at the closing night gala of AFI Fest 2012 on Nov. 8. “Steven Spielberg epitomizes American filmmaking,” said Jacqueline Lyanga, director of the American Film Institute’s festival, “and who better to tell the story of one of the most significant figures in our country’s history. In this important presidential election year, Spielberg’s Lincoln reminds us that the challenges of the past remain as relevant today.”

In the film, Daniel Day-Lewis portrays President Abraham Lincoln in the final days of the Civil War. The film also stars Sally Field, Tommy Lee Jones, David Strathairn, Jackie Earle Haley, John Hawkes, Hal Holbrook, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, James Spader and Jared Harris. Lincoln opens in select theaters on Nov. 9.

The 26th annual AFI Fest runs Nov. 1-8 in Hollywood, at the historic Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, the Chinese 6 Theatres, the Egyptian Theatre, and the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel.

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