Cannes: Directors' Fortnight Unveils Lineup

"Above the Hill"
"Above the Hill"
 

PARIS -- Following last week’s announcement of Ari Folman’s The Congress as its opening film, the Directors' Fortnight has announced the complete lineup for the annual sidebar. The 45th Fortnight will screen 21 feature films, including 16 world premieres, and nine short films.

The features in this year's Fortnight, which runs May 16-26, include Raphael Nadjari’s Above the Hill. It will be the Israeli-French filmmaker’s return to Cannes after a five-year absence; his his 2008 film Tehilim competed for the Palme d'Or in the main competition.

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After the Night by Basil Da Cunha is the first feature from the Swiss director; two of his previous short films were featured in the Director’s Fortnight in 2011 and 2012.

Jeremy Saulnier’s Kickstarter-funded Blue Ruin will kick off the Brooklyn-based director’s Cannes career. Saulnier raised $37,828 from 438 donations in August of 2012 with a 2:40 video pitch and a written plea stating the revenge tale promises action, gore and laughs. A Voyager also sought funding from the public, soliciting PayPal donations on its production page. It’s the first film in 18 years from Oscar-winning documentarian Marcel Ophuls, who reexamines the history of his 85 years in the autobiographical film. 

Chile received quite a warm reception from the Fortnight. The Dance of Reality, by prolific writer-director-actor Alejandro Jodorowsky, tells the story of his childhood in Chile. A second film about the director’s two-year and ultimately unsuccessful attempt to adapt Frank Herbert’s novel Dune is chronicled in Frank Pavich’s documentary Jodorowsky’s DuneDavid Lynch’s version eventually made it to screens a decade later. Another Chilean-set entry is The Summer of the Flying Fish by first-time fiction director Marcela Said. Said won the “Films in Progress” award at the CineLatino festival at the Toulouse Film Festival in March, which awards services and funds to assist in post-production and completion. 

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Sebastian Silva’s Magic Magic is a psychological thriller set in the south of the country. It bowed at Sundance earlier this year, and boasts a trio of familiar indie faces, with Michael Cera (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World), Juno Temple (Lovelace) and Oscar-nominated Catalina Sandino Moreno (Maria Full of Grace) starring.

Also making its European debut after a Sundance premiere is Jim Mickle’s We Are What We Are. The cannibal drama is a remake of Mexican Jorge Michel Grau’s 2010 Spanish-language version of the same name. eOne acquired rights to the film back in January for the U.S., U.K., France, Scandinavia and South Africa. Memento Films is handling international sales.

Oscar-nominated director Ruairi Robinson will premiere his thriller Last Days on Mars. The sci-fi film has a star-studded cast, with Liev Schreiber (X-Men Origins: Wolverine), Romola Garai (One Day), Olivia Williams (Anna Karenina) and Tom Cullen (Downton Abbey) starring. Focus Features is handing sales outside of the U.K.

U.K. director Clio Barnard will debut her first fiction film after an award-winning documentary career with The Selfish Giant, a more grown-up take on the Oscar Wilde children’s tale.

Ilo Ilo by Singaporean director Anthony Chen, which follows a family coping with the fallout of financial crisis, and the prisoners-and-politicians hit-man thriller On the Job by Filipino director Erik Matti mark the sidebar’s two Southeast Asian entries. The Hindi-language drama Ugly, from veteran director Anurag Kashyap, is India’s only showing in the slate.

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France is favored heavily in the lineup, as ten Gallic productions or co-productions made the cut, including actor-director Guillaume Gallienne’s comedy Me, Myself and Mum, which stars last year’s Cannes jury member Diane Kruger, and Serge Bozon’s Tip Top, with Cannes regular Isabelle Huppert. The film had been anticipated to be part of the Official Selection.

Others are Thierry De Peretti’s Les Apaches, Antonin Peretjako’s La Fille du 14 Juillet, Kaveh Bakhtiari’s L’Escale, a co-production between Switzerland and France, and Yolande Moreau’s Henri. Cesar-winner Moreau won both Best Actress and Best First Film in 2005 for When the Sea Rises, which she starred in and co-directed with Gilles Porte; this marks her first solo film as a director.

The short film slate will include: Joao Nicolau’s Gambozinos (France, Portugal), Denes Nagy’s Lagy Eso (Belgium, Hungary), Yann Le Quellec’s Le Quepa sur la vilni (France), Marie-Elsa Sgualdo’s Man kann nicht auf einmal alles tun, aber man kann auf einmal alles lassen (Switzerland), Radu Jude’s O Umbra de nor (Romania), Andre Novais Oliveira’s Poucou Mais de um mes (Brazil), Eduardo Williams' Que je tombe le temps (France), Oscar Ruiz Navia’s Solecito (Columbia, Denmark and France), and Lynne Ramsay’s Swimmer (U.K.).

As previously announced, director Jane Campion will be honored with the Carrosse d'Or. Campion, who will serve as president of the Short Films and Cinefondation jury, will receive the award on May 16, the opening evening of the Director’s Fortnight.

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