Cannes Festival Unveils Closing Film

Cannes Film Festival poster 2019 - P 2019
Courtesy of the Cannes Film Festival

'The Specials' from 'The Intouchables' directors Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano will unspool on the final night of the festival.

The Specials from The Intouchables directors Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano will be the final film at this year's Cannes Film Festival.

It will screen after the festival's closing ceremony May 25 and the announcement of the Palme d'Or, with Pedro Almodovar, Bong Joon-ho, Xavier Dolan and Celine Sciamma among the filmmakers in competition. 

The French dramedy stars Vincent Cassel and Reda Kateb leading a cast of nonprofessional actors in the world of autistic teens and social workers. It elaborates on the themes the duo delved into on their French box office smash The Intouchables. That film, starring Francois Cluzet and Omar Sy, brought in $427 million worldwide and launched an American remake, The Upside, starring Bryan Cranston and Kevin Hart.

The Specials is set to open in France on Oct. 19. 

The festival has also christened the event "The Last Screening" instead of the "Closing Film," in an effort to boost the profile of the final night. Festival artistic director Thierry Fremaux said the new moniker was in reference to Peter Bogdanovich's The Last Picture Show and meant to add an air of celebration to the final festival night. He also recalled other closing night films, including Steven Spielberg's E.T. and Ridley Scott's Thelma and Louise

The festival has had trouble filling the final slot in recent years, opting to rerun the Palme d'Or winning film instead, though last year Terry Gilliam's beleaguered The Man Who Killed Don Quixote took the spot after besting a series of legal battles.

The film will wrap up a week of world premieres and gala screenings, which is set to start with Jim Jarmusch's zombie comedy The Dead Don't Die, starring Tilda Swinton, Chloe Sevigny, Selena Gomez and Adam Driver.