Agnès Varda's Final Film Lands Thanksgiving U.S. Release (Exclusive)
In addition to acquiring U.S. rights to the documentary, Janus Films will mount a touring retrospective of the filmmaker's long and celebrated career.
Agnès Varda's final film Varda by Agnès will open Nov. 22 in select cinemas in New York City, followed by a nationwide rollout.
The plan was revealed Monday by Janus Films, which has acquired U.S. rights to the documentary. The pic made its world premiere in February at the 2019 Berlin International Film Festival, weeks before the celebrated godmother of French New Wave cinema died at 90 at her home in Paris.
In Varda by Agnès — which is set to screen at the upcoming New York Film Festival — Varda turned the lens on herself and her artistic journey as a filmmaker and photographer.
"We felt it was important to make one last film where she would give some keys — her own — to her work; Varda by Agnès is rather a conversation," Rosalie Varda, the filmmaker's daughter and producer, said in a statement. "We completed the film for the Berlin Film Festival in February. The press conference to present the film was an intense and powerful moment for both of us. She knew it was her last and I, who thought she was eternal, realized that she was holding my hand to continue her work."
To coincide with the release of the doc, Janus will also mount a touring retrospective of Varda’s work featuring more than 30 movies from the filmmaker’s 60-plus-year career. The retrospective will launch Dec. 20 in New York at Film at Lincoln Center.
“Agnès Varda's final film is a canny valedictory by one of the greatest filmmakers ever to wield a camera. It is a quintessential Varda film that not only gives us new ways of looking at her life and work, but new ways of looking at the world,” said Peter Becker, a partner in Janus Films. "Agnès was a friend and mentor to many of us at Janus Films, and we are especially happy and honored to join with Rosalie and the Ciné-tamaris family in celebrating her legacy with this grand retrospective."
In 2018, Varda became the oldest person ever to be nominated in a competitive Oscar category for her hugely charming documentary Faces Places (Visages Villages), made in collaboration with the French visual artist JR. That same year, Varda picked up an honorary Oscar statuette.
Varda by Agnès will initially debut in New York at Film Forum and Film at Lincoln Center.