Todd Haynes, Udo Kier, Ingrid Caven to Present Rainer Werner Fassbinder Homage

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The Munich Film Festival will honor the legendary German director, who died 30 years ago this month.

BERLIN -- Oscar-nominated director Todd Haynes will present an homage to the late, great German filmmaker Rainer Werner Fassbinder at this year’s Munich International Film Festival. Fassbinder, who, like Haynes, directed mainly melodramas and period films, died 30 years ago this month.

“What I learned from Fassbinder is, among other things, how one can use popular film genres like the melodrama to address controversial social and political subject matter,” Haynes said. “Fassbinder used illusion, artificiality and emotion as a way to achieve truth, a truth that moves us more than any realism.”

Haynes, who will receive a complete retrospective of his films at the Munich festival this year, will present the final film in the Fassbinder homage: the newly restored version of Despair (1977), from the novel by Vladimir Nabokov, which Tom Stoppard adapted for the screen and which starred Dirk Bogarde and Andrea Ferreol.

Actor Udo Kier and actress-singer Ingrid Caven, both of whom appeared in several of Fassbinder’s movies, also will present the homage to the late director, which will run under the title "The Tenderness of Rainer Werner Fassbinder."

“We chose the title deliberately to contrast with the widespread cliché (of Fassbinder) as an enfant terrible,” said Munich festival director Diana Iljine. “It’s intended to remind people that there are moments in Fassbinder’s films that are among the most tender that have ever been put on screen.”

Among the films the Munich festival will screen for its Fassbinder tribute are In a Year of 13 Moons (1978), The Third Generation (1979) and Lola (1981).

A driven workaholic, Munich native Fassbinder made more than 40 films in just 13 years. He died June 10, 1982, of a drug overdose.

The 30th Munich International Film Festival runs June 29 to July 7. The festival will announce its full program next week.

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