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LECCE 2018

Michael Winterbottom, Ildiko Enyedi and a tribute to 1968 at the 19th Lecce European Film Festival

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- This year’s Champions of Italian Cinema are Kim Rossi Stuart and Jasmine Trinca, 10 European films are competing for the Golden Olive Tree, and the opening film is Nico Cirasola’s Rudy Valentino

Michael Winterbottom, Ildiko Enyedi and a tribute to 1968 at the 19th Lecce European Film Festival
Directors Michael Winterbottom and Ildikó Enyedi

The 19th edition of the European Film Festival, set to unspool in Lecce from 9-14 April 2018, will open with a journey that weaves between reality and fantasy, hot on the trail of Rodolfo ValentinoRudy Valentino [+see also:
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 by Nico Cirasola tells the story of the famous actor’s return to Castellaneta, his hometown in Apulia, in summer 1923, at the height of his international success. Two other out-of-competition premieres are on the line-up of the Salento-based gathering this year: the Italian-Albanian-Macedonian co-production Broken [+see also:
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by Edmond Budina and Breaths [+see also:
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by Alfredo Fiorillo, starring Alessio Boni.

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As for the European feature competition, ten films will be locking horns: they range from the Croatian title Agape [+see also:
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interview: Branko Schmidt
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]
 by Branko Schmidt to the Netherlands’ Beyond Words [+see also:
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interview: Urszula Antoniak
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]
 by Urszula Antoniak (co-produced with Poland), Cobain [+see also:
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interview: Nanouk Leopold
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]
 by Nanouk Leopold (co-produced with Belgium and Germany) and Disappearance [+see also:
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interview: Boudewijn Koole
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]
 by Boudewijn Koole (Norway/Netherlands), via the French movie The Party Is Over [+see also:
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interview: Marie Garel-Weiss
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]
 by Marie Garel-WeissPororoca [+see also:
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interview: Constantin Popescu
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 by Constantin Popescu (Romania/France) and Denmark’s Darling [+see also:
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 by Birgitte Stærmose, plus Scary Mother [+see also:
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interview: Ana Urushadze
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]
 by Ana Urushadze (Georgia/Estonia), the Bulgarian-German film ¾ [+see also:
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interview: Ilian Metev
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by Ilian Metev and, from Turkey, Yellow Heat [+see also:
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 by Fikret Reyhan. All of these movies will be duking it out for the Cristina Soldano Golden Olive Tree Award, the FIPRESCI Award, the Cineuropa Prize, the SNGCI Prize and the Agiscuola Prize.

Also back for the third year is the section dedicated to comedy, with a selection of five titles that will be having their Italian premieres: from France comes The Teacher [+see also:
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 by Olivier Ayache-Vidal; from Spain, Abracadabra [+see also:
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interview: Pablo Berger
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 by Pablo Berger; from Switzerland, Streaker [+see also:
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by Peter Luisi; from Estonia, The End of the Chain [+see also:
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interview: Priit Pääsuke
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 by Priit Pääsuke; and from Turkey, Taksim Hold’em [+see also:
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 by Michael Önder

This year, the Lecce European Film Festival is dedicating a tribute to 1968 in order to mark the 50th anniversary of the student protests of that year, with the screening of five films chosen by Luciana Castellina and Carlo VerdoneFists in the Pocket by Marco BellocchioSympathy for the Devil by Jean-Luc GodardThe Dreamers by Bernardo BertolucciSomething in the Air [+see also:
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interview: Olivier Assayas
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]
 by Olivier Assayas and The Strawberry Statement by Stuart Hagmann. And it was again Carlo Verdone who was in Rome to announce the three finalists for the ninth Mario Verdone Award (see the news): they are Roberto De Paolis for Pure Hearts [+see also:
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interview: Roberto De Paolis
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]
Simone Godano for Husband & Wife [+see also:
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 and Antonio Padovan for The Last Prosecco [+see also:
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; this edition’s special accolade goes to Andrea De Sica for Children of the Night [+see also:
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interview: Andrea De Sica
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]

The 2018 Champions of European Cinema are British director Michael Winterbottom and his Hungarian counterpart Ildikó Enyedi, to whom two retrospectives are being dedicated and who will pick up the Golden Olive Tree for Lifetime Achievement. They will respectively introduce audiences to the films In This World, which won the Golden Bear at the Berlinale in 2003, and On Body and Soul [+see also:
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interview: Ildiko Enyedi
interview: Ildiko Enyedi
interview: Réka Tenki
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]
, the recipient of the same prize in 2017. On the other hand, the Champions of Italian Cinema are actor-director Kim Rossi Stuart and Jasmine Trinca, crowned Best Actress in Cannes’ Un Certain Regard last year. 

Other highlights include the short-film competition for the Emidio Greco Award, and the customary Cinema and Reality section, which shines the spotlight on important social and cultural topics, and which includes Mena by Maria Cristina Fraddosio, about the protests currently taking place in Salento against the TAP gas pipeline, and Immagine dal vero by Luciano Accomando, which outlines the success stories of five women and seven men who have immigrated to Sicily. Lastly, in Lecce, audiences will be able to rediscover the three finalists for the 2017 LUX Prize: the winner, Sami Blood [+see also:
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interview: Amanda Kernell
interview: Lars Lindstrom
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]
 by Amanda KernellBPM (Beats Per Minute) [+see also:
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interview: Arnaud Valois
interview: Robin Campillo
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]
 by Robin Campillo and Western [+see also:
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interview: Jonas Dornbach
interview: Valeska Grisebach
interview: Valeska Grisebach
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]
 by Valeska Grisebach.

(Translated from Italian)

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