January 01, 2015

Tag Archives: cannes

Predicting the Palme d’Or at Cannes

HOLLYWOOD ENTERTAINMENT NETWORK: Over at the Cannes Film Festival tomorrow, the awards announcements will take place, leading up to the crowning of this year’s Palme d’Or winning film. There doesn’t seem to be a movie there that’s the obvious frontrunner, so we have a situation where the festival jury (led by filmmaker Jane Campion) could go in any number of directions. They have American Oscar bait, new works from Cannes favorites, and a whole host of other flicks to choose from. I have to say, this year is probably one of the more wide open ones that we’ve seen in a bit. I’ve never been less confident in Cannes awards predictions than I am now, but we’ll press on anyway…
Before we get to the big award, I’ll speculate a bit on the acting, directing, and screenplay awards. For Actor, I think it’ll be the high profile selection of Steve Carrell for Foxcatcher, though Timothy Spall could just as easily win for Mr. Turner as well. With Actress, Marion Cotillard seems like the far out frontrunner for Two Days, One Night here, though if you want a potential upset, look for Julianne Moore in David Cronenberg’s Maps to the Stars, Kristen Stewart in Olivier Assayas’ Clouds of Sils Maria, or Hilary Swank in Tommy Lee Jones’ The Homesman. Director is almost like another runner up prize, so something that loses the Palme could win here. For that I have Xavier Dolan for Mommy, though any of the other contenders are possible, especially Bennett Miller or Mike Leigh. Lastly, I’m sort of at a loss for Screenplay, so I’ll go with what I’ve heard is the likely winner in Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s Winter Sleep, though watch out for Foxcatcher here as well.
Now, on to the Golden Palm. It seems to be a competition between Foxcatcher, Leviathan, Mommy, Mr. Turner, and Winter Sleep, though some have speculated that Two Days, One Night could be a spoiler. I suspect that at least one of those will also wind up as either the Grand Prix (Second Place) or Jury Prize (Third Place) winner, but I have no good clue as to which one, though if a gun was to my head, I’d say maybe Leigh’s Mr. Turner comes in second and Miller’s Foxcatcher comes in third. By that line of thinking, that would have Dolan’s Mommy and Zvyagintsev’s Leviathan fighting it out for the big […]

“Foxcatcher” has announced itself as an awards player at Cannes

Earlier this week, Bennett Miller’s third directorial outing Foxcatcher debuted at the Cannes Film Festival to pretty much rave reviews. In an instant, it went from a potential Oscar hopeful to a likely nominee. Ever since pundits like myself first thought the movie was hitting last year, it’s been spoken of a possible big player. Now, we can firmly discuss it in slightly more sure terms. To be fair, nothing is guaranteed for the film, but right now, nothing has better buzz than Foxcatcher. If it can sustain until its theatrical release this fall, it may very well even become a Best Picture frontrunner.
Many of my colleagues at Cannes have said that this is Miller’s best film yet. Considering that his first two films are Capote and Moneyball, both of which were Best Picture nominees, that’s saying something. Miller is a previous Best Director nominee as well, so not only is he likely to be back in that race, he’ll probably contend seriously for the win as well. I recently spoke of the danger filmmakers face when making passion projects, but it seems like Miller has avoided all of the traps there, resulting in what a ton of folks are calling a brilliant film.
The cast are receiving tons of praise as well. Steve Carrell and Channing Tatum are the subject of career best reviews, while Mark Ruffalo is being highly spoken of as well. With Sienna Miller and Vanessa Redgrave also on hand, there’s no shortage of talent in play for awards consideration now. I can’t imagine Carrell being snubbed now, whether it’s in Best Actor or Best Supporting Actor, while Ruffalo and Tatum will likely be in contention now as well. Miller and Redgrave weren’t given too many notices, but if Best Supporting Actress turns out to be a weak field, one could certainly sneak in there as well.
Of course, anything is possible for the movie. Sometimes the acclaimed films from Cannes don’t sustain throughout an entire season. Sometimes a similar flick can take the wind out of this one’s sails. Sometimes a different work just captures all the attention. There’s no way of knowing what’s going to happen to Foxcatcher between now and then, so there are absolutely no guarantees. There is, however, educated guesswork to be done, and that puts the film in a solid spot. It doesn’t seem like the sort of one to be forgotten […]

2014 Cannes Film Festival Jury is selected

The New Zealand director, producer and screenwriter Jane Campion, winner of the Palme d’or for The Piano, will be the President of the Jury of the 67th Festival de Cannes. Cannes has always sought to adopt a universal and international approach, and in tune with this tradition, Campion will be surrounded by eight luminaries of world cinema, from China, Korea, Denmark, Iran, the United States, France and Mexico.
As in 2009 the Jury will therefore include five women and four men. Their task will be to decide between the 18 films in Competition in order to select the winners – to be announced on stage at the ceremony on Saturday 24th May. The winner of the Palme d’or will be screened during the Festival’s closing evening on Sunday 25th of May, in the presence of the jury and the entire team from the winning film.
Jane CAMPION – President (Director, Screenwriter, Producer – New Zealand)
Carole BOUQUET (Actress – France)
Sofia COPPOLA (Director, Screenwriter, Producer – United States)
Leila HATAMI (Actress – Iran)
JEON Do-yeon (Actress – South Korea)
Willem DAFOE (Actor – United States)
Gael GARCIA BERNAL (Actor, Director, Producer – Mexico)
JIA Zhangke (Director, Screenwriter, Producer – China)
Nicolas Winding REFN (Director, Screenwriter, Producer – Denmark)
Photo PRPhotos.com

Foxcatcher will debut at Cannes and might be on a collision course with Oscar

About a month ago, I wrote a piece here that speculated on some of the Academy Award hopefuls that might be debuting at the Cannes Film Festival. Well, the lineup for Cannes has been announced (at least the preliminary list of titles…look for some movies to be added in the coming weeks), and while a few flicks I mentioned in that article like The Homesman, How to Catch a Monster, and Maps to the Stars are set to unspool in France, the film that probably is the most anticipated, especially in terms of awards potential, is Bennett Miller’s Foxcatcher. In fact, I’ve listed it as a Best Picture frontrunner in my Oscar predictions, if you haven’t already noticed.
In case you’re not up to speed on this movie, it’s obviously directed by Miller based on a script from Dan Futterman and based on a true story. The plot surrounds Olympic Wrestling Champion Mark Schultz and how, while training with paranoid schizophrenic millionaire John duPont, Schultz’s brother, Olympic Champion Dave Schultz, was killed by duPont. The cast is led by Steve Carrell as duPont, Mark Ruffalo as Dave, and Channing Tatum as Mark, with Anthony Michael Hall, Sienna Miller, and Vanessa Redgrave in supporting turns as well. That’s pretty baity stuff if I do say so myself, especially in terms of the potential it holds for Carrell and Ruffalo.
Miller has so far been perfect at getting his films into Best Picture lineups, with both Capote and Moneyball scoring citations. This is also a passion project of his, which could put an extra chip on his shoulder to really nail this one. He’s also gotten multiple performers of his nominated each time out (along with his screenplays getting nominated both times to go along with one Best Director nomination for himself as well), so the odds are really in this cast’s favor. Assuming the debut at Cannes goes well, it’d be pretty foolish to bet against this one not turning into a major awards player.
So, what are the odds of Foxcatcher going from Cannes to the Oscar ceremony? Well, it’s not incredibly uncommon, though winners are a bit more on the rare side. The last movie to pull that off was No Country for Old Men, so while Foxcatcher (along with The Homesman, for example) might not have any statistics out there in the universe to suggest that a strong debut at this […]

Could a Best Picture nominee launch from Cannes this year?

In the pretty near future, the lineup for the 2014 Cannes Film Festival will be announced. We already know that potential Oscar player Grace of Monaco will be there, but what else could debut at Cannes and then potentially appeal to Academy members? This particular festival isn’t nearly as awards season centric as the New York or Toronto Film Festivals are (or the Telluride Film Festival, for that matter), but we always get a contender or two to discuss. Last year we had Blue is the Warmest Color debut, while future nominees like The Great Beauty, Inside Llewyn Davis, and Nebraska unspooled as well. That got me thinking about what this year’s slate could have inside of it for prognosticators like myself to chew on…
Below you’ll find five titles that I think could have a chance at turning the heads of voters, provided of course that they play at the fest. I’ve opted to focus on American movies just because those are the ones that the Academy tends to focus in on themselves, though of course there are exceptions from time to time like Amour. Still, big time contenders (and even the occasional Best Picture winner like No Country for Old Men) tend to be english language outings. Anyway, now I’ll dive in and speculate about five likely Cannes titles that could have a chance to woo members of the Academy.
1. Birdman – There’s a chance that this comedy from Alejandro González Iñárritu could be too offbeat for Oscar voters, but they’ve gone out on dramatic limbs with him before, so if this tale of a washed up actor doesn’t get too weird for them, there are tons of nomination opportunities. This could also be the role that nabs Michael Keaton his first Academy Award nomination too, so there’s that. This one could either get shut out or be a huge player, but it’s potentially the most likely to transition to awards season attention. We’ll see if it actually debuts at Cannes, but I think it’s highly likely that it will.
2. Magic in the Moonlight – Another highly likely title for the fest, Woody Allen’s next movie is set in France, so that only makes it even more apt for a slot. That being said, of late Allen has basically seen every other film of his become Oscar players, so this could be the off year for him. Still, it’s likely […]

Forest Whitaker and Orlando Bloom in Zulu by Jerome Salle to close the 66th Cannes Film Festival

The 66th Festival de Cannes will close on 26th May with a screening of the thriller Zulu, shot entirely on location in South Africa by Jérôme Salle and adapted from the novel of the same name by Caryl Férey.
The action takes place in Cape Town, in a South Africa still overshadowed by apartheid, where destitute townships rubs shoulders with affluent neighbourhoods. Two cops on the beat, Orlando Bloom (Pirates of the Caribbean by Gore Verbinski, Lord of the Rings by Peter Jackson) and Forest Whitaker (The Last King of Scotland by Kevin McDonald, Ghost Dog, La Voie du Samouraï by Jim Jarmush) are caught up in a suspenseful search which combines elements of political film noir and social study (…).
To read more go to www.festival-cannes.fr
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66th Film Festival de Cannes Risqué Poster

To grace the poster for its 66th edition, the Festival de Cannes has chosen a couple who embody the spirit of cinema like no other: Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman, photographed during the shooting of the aptly named A New Kind of Love, by Melville Shavelson (1963).
For the Festival it is a chance both to pay tribute to the memory of Paul Newman, who passed away in 2008, and to mark its undying admiration for Joanne Woodward, his wife and most favoured co-star.
They were honoured at the Festival de Cannes in 1958 – the year of their marriage – with the selection In Competition of Martin Ritt’s The Long Hot Summer, the first film in which they appeared together. (…)

To read more go to Cannes Film Festival
Photo © 1963 by Paramount Pictures Corporation and
Llenroc Productions.
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Baz Luhrmann, Leonardo DiCaprio and Scott Fitzgerald to inaugurate the festival de Cannes

It is on The Great Gatsby by Australian director Baz Luhrmann, that the curtain will rise at the inauguration of the 66th Festival de Cannes, on Wednesday 15th May, in the Grand Théâtre Lumière du Palais des Festivals, out of Competition in the Official Selection.
Adapted from the famous novel by American author Francis Scott Fitzgerald and set against the roaring twenties on the East Coast of the United States, the film depicts the romantic and tragic figure of Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio), as narrated by his friend Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire). Carey Mulligan is Daisy Buchanan, whose husband is played by Joel Edgerton.
This prestigious occasion will also be graced with the presence of Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan, as well as the American pop star, rapper Jay-Z
To read more go to Festival de Cannes
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Steven Spielberg, jury president of the 66th Festival de Cannes

“My admiration for the steadfast mission of the Festival to champion the international language of movies is second to none. The most prestigious of its kind, the festival has always established the motion picture as a cross cultural and generational medium.”
Taking over the reins from the Italian Nanni Moretti, American director and producer Steven Spielberg agrees to head up the jury of the 66th Cannes Film Festival taking place May 15-26 this year.
“As they say across the Atlantic”, said Gilles Jacob, President of the Festival de Cannes, “Steven Spielberg is a Cannes ‘regular’: Sugarland Express, Color Purple. But it was with E.T. that I screened as a world premiere in ‘82 that ties were made of the type you never forget. Ever since, I’ve often asked Steven to be Jury President, but he’s always been shooting a film. So when this year I was told “E.T., phone home”, I understood and immediately replied: “At last!”
“Steven Spielberg accepted in principle two years ago”, declared Thierry Frémaux, General Delegate of the Festival. “He was able to make himself available this year to be the new Jury President and when meeting him these last few weeks it has been obvious he’s excited about the job. Because of his films, and the many causes he holds dear, he’s year-in year-out the equal of the very greatest Hollywood filmmakers. We are very proud to count him among us.”
To read more go to Festival de Cannes
Courtesy 2013 Festival de Cannes
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Jane Campion to head up the Cinéfondation and Short Film Jury of the 66th Cannes Film Festival

Director, Jane Campion, is to head up the Cinéfondation and Short Film Jury of the 66th Cannes Film Festival, taking over the role from Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Michel Gondry, Hou Hsiao Hsien, Martin Scorsese and John Boorman.
From New Zealand, Jane Campion stood out from her earliest works: in 1986 she won short film Palme d’or for Peel and garnered the interest of critics internationally for Sweetie, the first feature she presented in competition at the Festival de Cannes. After An Angel at my Table, she returned to Cannes with The Piano, which won the Palme d’or in ’93, as well as the best actress award for Holly Hunter.
To read more go to Cannes Film Festival
Photo by AFP at Cannes Film Festival
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