A special evening tribute to Marion Cotillard was held prior to the screening of Rust & Bone on November 5 at the Grauman's Chinese Theater to a packed house of 2,000 spectators. Discussions held after the screening were moderated by Anthony Breznican from Entertainment Weekly.
This year's week-long festival attracted around 70,000 spectators at the following partner theaters: Grauman's Chinese Theater, the Chinese Theaters (6 theaters in a multiplex, with 177 to 470 seats), and the Egyptian Theater (800 seats), all located on Hollywood Boulevard. The event offers the majority of seats to its various partners, sponsors, members, film graduates and students from the American Film Institute school in Hollywood), who take part in discussions held after the screenings. As explained to the press by Jacqueline Lyanga, director of the AFI, "The free tickets have brought in a younger audience." Evening events were held at the Roosevelt Hotel after the screenings, bringing together American distributors, producers of the films presented and Los Angeles media representatives, who gave the event wide coverage this year.
Taking advantage of the presence of French directors in Los Angeles to present their films at the AFI Fest, uniFrance Films also organized film screenings and debates with Los Angeles film students. At these events, Olivier Assayas presented his film Something in the Air to over 300 students from the USC on November 1 and Leos Carax took part in Q & A sessions with 200 students from the AFI on November 5. On the west coast, Benoit Jacquot visited four universities (the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, Wellesley College, Darmouth College in Hanover, and Boston University), where he presented Farewell My Queen, A Single Girl, Seventh Heaven and Right Now. These three events were held as part of the On Set with French Cinema program and attracted keen interest from film students, highlighting the enduring enthusiasm for contemporary French cinema shown by American students and universities.