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London does cannes and vice versa

  FESTIVAL NEWS - MAY 2007 Artistic Director Sandra Hebron and our Festival programmers are at the 60th Cannes Film Festival, searching for the best in new international film to bring to London in October for the Times BFI 51st London Film Festival. So we thought we'd bring a little taste of Cannes to the capital with some special BFI Southbank events and screenings.  Cannes & Film - 60 Glorious Years? Tue 12 June 6.15pm at BFI Southbank In the second Sight & Sound discussion e...

"Une Vieille Maîtresse" by Catherine Breillat

Eleven years after the presentation in the parallel section of Perfect Love, French director Catherine Breillat is competing for the Palme d'Or for the first time with Une Vieille Maîtresse. Adapted from the novel of the same name by Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly, the action in this feature takes place in the mid-19th century. Licentious young Ryno de Marigny (Fu’ad Aït Aattou) is engaged to the virginal Hermangarde (Roxane Mesquida), the fine flower of the aristocracy. But ill-wishers de...

"We Own the Night" by James Gray

Seven years after The Yards, presented in Competition, American director James Gray is back on the Croisette competing a third time for a chance at the Palme d’Or with We Own the Night. The action is set in NY in the 80s. NYPD officers and father & son (Robert Duvall and Mark Wahlberg) are caught up in a crime drama with a Russian gangster (Joaquin Phoenix) operating out of his nightclub. The assault is launched against organized crime and drug trafficking and the young police officer must...

"Alexandra" by Alexander Sokurov

Alexandra is the fourth film by Russian cineaste Alexander Sokurov to be presented In Competition. Moloch won Best Screenplay in 1999; selections since have been Taurus (2001) and Father and Son (2003). Alexandra is a story with a political background: a Russian grandmother goes to visit her grandson, an officer stationed in the Republic of Chechnya. Sokurov gave the title role to Galina Vishnevskaya, who, at 80, is a legend of the Russian opera scene, and the widow of the great cellist Mstislav...

“Secret Sunshine” by Lee Chang-Dong

One of Korea’s leading filmmakers, Lee Chang-dong, is presenting his latest work in Competition, entitled Secret Sunshine. The film mixes comedy and despair, darkness and light and is an ode to how we cope in everyday life. Featuring one of Korea’s biggest stars, Song Kang-ho and also Jeon Do-yeon, Secret Sunshine follows the couple who re-locate to Miryang and their difficulties in adapting. Lee Chang-dong relates his intentions: “My original idea for the movie was for it to be more rea...

Mediasalles in Cannes released it annual study on European cinema attendance (+3.5%)

Updated information on cinema-going in Europe in 2006 in the MEDIA Salles Newsletter “European Cinema Journal” no. 2/2007 (attached), presented during the Cannes Film Festival on 21 May. At the MEDIA Salles “happy hour”, the traditional gathering for cinema professionals and journalists. The President of the Association, Jens Rykær, commented: “We are happy that 2006 has seen an increase in audiences in European cinemas and that in several countries Europe’s films have obtained sign...

Business Reigns in Cannes But The Show Must Go On!

There is much excitement during this time as the Cannes Film Festival events are underway.  The one aspect that does not get as much publicity, however, is the business end of the show.  There are buyers and film production companies looking to sign with film makers from all over the world.  In the "Marche du Film", or Film Market, companies are set up with booths all over the building offering films and services for film production.  Screenings are held on the upper levels of the ...

DuBai Fest will be hosting the amfAR Cinema Against AIDS Event in Cannes, Sharon Stone to chair

Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF) announced today that DIFF will be hosting the amfAR Cinema Against AIDS Event to be presented during the Fourth edition of the film festival which takes place December 9-16th, 2007. The Dubai International Film Festival was founded on the unique theme ‘Bridging Cultures. Meeting Minds.’ launched in 2004 using the powerful medium of film to serve as a platform for inter-cultural dialogue.   The association with amfAR offers the opportunity to extend ...

5th Europe Day in Cannes Saturday may 26th

Against the background of the new audiovisual legislation adopted by the European Commission on 24 May which will extend the advantages of the "Television without Frontiers" Directive to video and video-on-demand (giving European works more exposure on new media and generating new revenue for film-making), the fifth Europe Day will be held in Cannes under the sponsorship of Brazilian director Walter Salles on the subject "Film-making in Europe: the new rules of the game". In ...

"Persepolis" by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud

This is a year of many firsts for Persepolis co-directors Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud. Their first feature-length film has won them their first In-Competition selection at the Cannes Festival. The team has come to the Croisette with an animated film which, as a first feature, is also in the running for a Golden Camera award. Adapted from the Satrapi's original graphic novel, based on her own life, the action in this animated  feature begins in Tehran in 1978, on the eve of the Isl...

"The Man from London" by Béla Tarr

Hungarian director Béla Tarr, a guest of the Cannes Festival in 2000 for the presentation of Werckmeister Harmonies in the parallel section, is competing for a Palme d'Or this year with his new feature, The Man from London. Adapted from a mystery novel of the same name by genre maestro Georges Simenon, it's the story of how the life of a solitary man, played by actor Miroslav Krobot, becomes a nightmare when he witnesses a murder. He finds himself confronted with sin, ethics, and punish...

"The Edge of Heaven" by Fatih Akin

Director Fatih Akin is showing his first film in the Cannes Official Competition, his second feature, The Edge of Heaven. This is not his first time to Cannes though as he served on the Jury two years ago as well as he presented Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Istanbul. After winning the Golden Bear at Berlin for Head-On in 2004, Fatih Akin suffered from expectation: “I felt pressured to come up with something better than Head-On. I wanted to do better artistically. I had to prove to myself ...

ITN Distribution, Inc. announces the recent acquisition of Johnny 316, starring indie guru Vincent Gallo

Dynamic company, ITN Distribution Inc. (ITN) has announced that they have acquired worldwide sales rights to Johnny 316, an impossible love story starring Vincent Gallo (Buffalo 66, The Brown Bunny) and stunning actress and model Nina Brosh. ITN President Stuart Alson will act as exclusive agent for the feature film and plans to generate heavy sales out of Riviera F11 at the 2007 Marche DuFilm/Cannes. Other films on the ITN roster include, That’s the Way of the World starring Harvey Keitel;...

"The Diving Bell and the Butterfly" by Julian Schnabel

Presented in Competition at this 60th Cannes Festival, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly is Julian Schnabel's third feature-length film, following Basquiat (1996) and Before Night Falls (2000). The film is an adaptation of the book by Jean-Dominique Bauby, whose life changed completely in 1995 when he had a massive stroke. The 43-year-old journalist, father of two children, spent twenty days in a deep coma. When he woke up, he found the damage to his brain stem had resulted in a rare form of...

"Luz Silenciosa" (Silent Light) by Carlos Reygadas

Mexican director Carlos Reygadas's career is an integral part of the history of the Cannes Festival. In 2002, his first film, Japan, was featured by Directors' Fortnight. Three years later, Battle in Heaven, his second feature-length film, was selected in Competition. This year, Reygadas is again competing for the Golden Palm, with Silent Light, his third film. It is an exploration of the community of the Mennonites, a religious sect with a large settlement in northern Mexico. The Mennon...

"Death Proof - A Grindhouse Film" by Quentin Tarantino

With the in-Competition presentation of Death Proof – A Grindhouse Film, the Cannes Festival is reunited with one of its most loyal directors, none other than Quentin Tarantino. After bursting onto the scene in 1992 with Reservoir Dogs, winning the Golden Palm for Pulp Fiction two years later, and then presenting his Kill Bill – Volume 2 here in 2004, the very year when he officiated as President of the Jury, this year the American filmmaker is traveling with some especially original reels i...

Short Film Corner: French Lesson

                One of the shortest films in the short film corner, at only four minutes long, “French Lesson” relies entirely on an almost music video-esque quality to propel its narrative. The story of the film, which was directed by Nic Osborne, is based upon the familiar idea of boredom in the classroom. Utilizing the well-known metaphors of black and white versus color à la Wizard of Oz to show the audience the change in mood, the film follows Lolita during the Alizée s...

Arab in America

Over in the Short Corner Films area of the Film Market, one may view an interesting short production entitled "Arab in America".  Writer/Director Nabil Abou-Harb gives a comedic yet parallel look at the life of an average Arab-American living in the United States post 9/11.  The film, about 13 minutes in length, follows a character by the name of Osama Abou-Bakr, who experiences some hardships while searching for a job after graduating college.  He changed his name and makes attempt...

Over 150 Video-On-Demand Services Being Utilized in Europe

For the event of the Cannes International Film Market, the European Audiovisual Observatory and the French Directorate for the Development is presenting a study of the video-on-demand usage within 24 European countries. This study is being completed by NPA Conseil. As stated in the Press Release in Strasbourg: "The study analyses the various technical methods used for video-on-demand, the various economic models applied, the debate on regulation, and the place of video-on-demand in the cine...

Short Films Corner

Within the Marche du Films (Film Market), there is a small area called "Short Films Corner" where all of the short films are promoted and screened. At a corner of the "corner" there is a small desk where one may schedule an appointment to view some films. Behind the desk is a small cubicle-type of area with computers and headphones for people to view any short films at the festival. Each person with an appointment to view films is allowed one hour of viewing time.Short Films ...

German Film Music Day in Cannes

At a press conference for German Film Music yesterday, May 21st, "Sony/ATV Music Publishing (Germany) and Soundtrack_Cologne, the Cologne convention on music in film and the media, announced a far-reaching collaboration in the field of talent scouting."As part of a first-look agreement the winners of NEW SOUNDS IN EUROPEAN FILM, SoundTrack_Cologne’s European competition, will, among others, get the chance to be signed up for a publishing contract with Sony/ATV. For this purpose both...

Sub-Ti Party at Hilton, Cannes

The international subtitling company, Sub-Ti, held a party at the Cannes Hilton I-Lounge on Monday evening during the Cannes Film Festival. Sub-Ti is based in London, and has offices in Milan, Paris, Bologna, Barcelona, and New York. Guests of the party enjoyed wonderful Italian cuisine looking out over the bay of Cannes....

"Paranoid Park" by Gus Van Sant

Winner of both the Golden Palm and Best Director awards in 2003 for Elephant, director Gus Van Sant returns this year with Paranoid Park, a feature-length film in which the characters are once again teenage boys. This adaptation of Blake Nelson's novel of the same name follows 16-year-old skateboarder Alex, who accidentally kills a security guard outside Paranoid Park, Portland's most infamous skateboarding locale. When he decides not to tell anyone, he takes on a crushing burden of guil...

"Import Export" by Ulrich Seidl

Import Export, presented in Competition, marks the return of the Austrian director Ulrich Seidl to Cannes, five years after having presented his startling Dog Days. His new film tells the story of two characters on opposite tracks: a young Ukrainian nurse who goes to Austria to find employment, and a young Austrian man who settles in Ukraine, also to earn a livelihood. Shot in extreme conditions, at temperatures of 20°F below zero, Import Export features the work of two amateur actors, Ekateryb...

"Tehilim" by Raphaël Nadjari

Raphaël Nadjari, one of whose previous films, The Shade, was selected for Un Certain Regard in 1999, is presenting his new feature, Tehilim, in Competition today. This drama, which attests to French director Nadjari's attachment to Israel - just as Avanim (2004) did - is the portrait of a Jewish family in great distress following the death of the father, played by Shmuel Vilojni. Each member of the family does his or her best to deal with the void left by the death, and the difficulties of ...