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The lineup of the 71st Cannes Film Festival was unveiled in Paris Thursday morning during a press conference live streamed from the Champs-Elysees.
Artistic director Thierry Fremaux and festival president Pierre Lescure were on hand to reveal the coveted Official Selection, including films chosen for the main competition.
The competition lineup includes Spike Lee, who will return to the Croisette after a twenty-year absence to screen his new film BlacKkKlansman, starring Adam Driver, John David Washington, Topher Grace and Laura Harrier. The other American film bowing in competition will be David Robert Mitchell’s L.A. neo-noir Under the Silver Lake, starring Andrew Garfield and Riley Keough, with A24 set to release the film domestically on June 22.
Italy will be represented this year by two competition titles: Gomorrah director Matteo Garrone’s Dogman and Alice Rohrwacher with her new drama, Happy as Lazzaro, which Fremaux noted will screen in 35mm.
Rohrwacher is one of three female directors in the main competition, the others being Lebanese actress-director Nadine Labaki (Caramel) with her feature Capernaum and French director Eva Husson’s femme-centric Kurdish war film, Girls of the Sun.
France, which traditionally has three films in competition, will also be represented by director Stephanie Brize’s factory-set social drama At War, starring Vincent Lindon — who received the 2015 Cannes best actor prize for Brize’s The Measure of a Man — and Christophe Honore, who will return to the Croisette with his Vincent Lacoste starrer Sorry Angel.
Another Cannes vet, 87-year-old Franco-Swiss auteur Jean-Luc Godard, will unspool his latest creation, Le Livre d’image (The Book of Images). Godard was last present at Cannes with his 2014 film Goodbye to Language, shown in 3D, while a shot from his classic New Wave film Pierrot le fou graces this year’s official poster.
Asia will be represented by four titles in competition, including two Japanese films: Croisette regular Hirokazu Koreeda’s Shoplifters and newbie Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Asako I & II; Chinese helmer Jia Zhangke, returning to competition with Ash Is the Purest White; and Korean auteur Lee Chang-dong, who last played Cannes in 2010 with Poetry and will return with the thriller, Burning.
Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi, who won the Camera d’Or prize in 1995 for The White Balloon, will premiere Three Faces. Panahi, whose 2015 film Taxi took home Berlin’s Golden Bear, has been under house arrest in Iran since 2011 and banned from traveling outside his country. Fremaux mentioned during the press conference that Cannes will do their best to have Panahi present for his premiere.
Oscar winner Pawel Pawlikowski (Ida) will play competition for the first time with his black-and-white romantic drama Cold War, which will be distributed in the U.S. by Amazon Studios.
The main competition will be rounded out by first-time Egyptian director A.B. Shawky with Yomeddine, a road movie about a leper; Russian helmer Kirill Serebrennikov (The Student) — currently under house arrest in Moscow — with his tale of rock music during the Brezhnev years, Summer; and Asghar Farhadi’s with his previously announced opening night film, Everybody Knows, starring Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz.
Among the special screenings are Wim Wenders’ Pope Francis – A Man of His Word and The State Against Mandela and the Others by Nicolas Champeaux and Gilles Porte. Fremaux highlighted that the pope would not be in Cannes to walk the red carpet and said more titles could be added to the program in the coming days.
One such title could be Lars Von Trier’s much buzzed about serial killer story The House That Jack Built, which Fremaux said we could hear some news about next week. Otherwise, two Cannes veterans — Jacques Audiard (Dheepan) with his English-language western The Sisters Brothers and Xavier Dolan with his ensemble piece The Death and Life of John F. Donovan — will not show up on the Croisette this year, with Fremaux explaining in the presser that the first film was being held back by U.S. producer-distributor Annapurna Pictures while the second was still in postproduction.
The third and final American film to grace the official selection will be the previously announced Solo: A Star Wars Story, directed by Ron Howard. Fremaux mentioned it will be the third time that a Star Wars movie has bowed on the Croisette.
The Cannes Film Festival will run from May 8 through May 19.
Here is the full lineup:
Everybody Knows, Asghar Farhadi (opening-night film)
At War, Stephane Brize
Dogman, Matteo Garrone
Le Livre d’image, Jean-Luc Godard
Asako I & II, Ryusuke Hamaguchi
Sorry Angel, Christophe Honore
Girls of the Sun, Eva Husson
Ash is Purest White, Jia Zhangke
Shoplifters, Hirokazu Koreeda
Burning, Lee Chang-dong
Capernaum, Nadine Labaki
Blackkklansman, Spike Lee
Under the Silver Lake, David Robert Mitchell
Three Faces, Jafar Panahi
Cold War, Pawel Pawlikowski
Happy, Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher
Yomeddine, A.B. Shawky
Summer, Kiril Serebrennikov
Out of Competition
Solo: A Star Wars Story, Ron Howard
Le Grand Bain, Gilles Lellouche
Un Certain Regard
Border, Ali Abbasi
Sofia, Benm’ Barek
Little Tickles, Andrea Bescond and Eric Metayer
Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Bi Gan
Manto, Nandita Das
Sextape, Antoine Desrosieres
Girl, Lukas Dhont
Angel Face, Vanessa Filho
Euphoria, Valeria Golino
Friend, Wanuri Kahiu
My Favorite Fabric, Gaya Jiji
The Harvesters, Etienne Kallos
In My Room, Ulrich Kohler
El Angel, Luis Ortega
The Gentle Indifference of the World, Adilkhan Yerzhanov
Gongjak (The Spy Gone North), Yoon Jong-Bing
Arctic, Joe Penna
Pope Francis – A Man of His Word, Wim Wenders
The State Against Mandela and the Others, Nicolas Champeaux and Gilles Porte
La Traversee, Romain Goupil
To the Four Winds, Michel Toesca
Les Ames Mortes (Dead Souls), Wang Bing
O Grande Circo Mistico (Le Grand Cirque Mystique), Carlo Diegues
10 Years in Thailand, Aditya Assarat, Wisit Sasanatieng, Chulayarnon Sriphol and Apichatpong Weerasethakul
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