French productions and sales agents invade the Lido
by Fabien Lemercier
29/08/2012 - Out of 18 Golden Lion contenders at the 69th Venice Film Festival starting today, four are French majority co-productions. These include three films that Cineuropa predicted would compete at the festival (read more) -- Olivier Assayas’s Something in the Air [trailer, film focus] (sales: MK2), Xavier Giannoli’s Superstar [trailer, film focus] (a Franco-Belgian co-production - sales: Wild Bunch), and Valeria Sarmiento’s The Lines of Wellington [trailer, film focus] (a Franco-Portuguese co-production - sales: Alfama Films - out on November 21) -- as well as Brian de Palma’s Passion [trailer], a remake of Alain Corneau’s Crime d’amour produced by SBS Films with France 2 Cinéma and Germany (sales: SBS and Wild Bunch).
The competition in Venice also includes four French minority co-productions. Italian director Marco Bellocchio’s Dormant Beauty [trailer, film focus, festival scope] (sales: Celluloid Dreams) and fellow Italian Daniele Cipri’s It Was the Son were both co-produced by Babe Films. Jessica Woodworth and Peter Brosens’s The Fifth Season [trailer, film focus] was co-produced by Unlimited with Belgium and the Netherlands, while Ulrich Seidl’s Paradise: Faith [trailer, film focus] was co-produced by Société Parisienne de Production with Austria and Germany (sales: Coproduction Office). Also in the competition, Celluloid Dreams is also selling Japanese director Takeshi Kitano’s Outrage Beyond, Elle Driver is selling Russe Kirill Serebrennikov’s Betrayal, and Kinology is selling American director Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers.
Out of competition, France is also very well represented with Pascal Bonitzer’s Cherchez Hortense [trailer] (lit. “Looking for Hortense” - read more - production and sales: SBS), Jean-Pierre Améris’s The Man who Laughs (news - sales: EuropaCorp), Franco-Portuguese parity co-production Gebo and the Shadow [trailer] by Manoel de Oliveira (sales: Pyramide), and Franco-Italian documentary The Tightrope [trailer, festival scope] by Simon Brook (sales: Films Distribution). Then there is Daniele Incalcaterra and Fausta Quattrini’s El Impenetrable (production: Les Films d'Ici with Argentina – sales Doc & Film International), Susan Bier’s Love Is All You Need [trailer] (a Slot Machine co-production with Denmark, Italy, Sweden, and Germany) and two titles by Amos Gitaï: Lullaby to my Father [trailer] and Carmel (co-production and sales: French company Agav Films).
France confirms that it has been very busy in terms of international co-productions in the Orizzonti section, with Frédéric Fonteyne’s Tango libre [trailer, film focus] (a Nord-Ouest Films co-production with Belgium and Luxembourg – sales: Films Distribution), Djamila Sahraoui’s Yema (co-produced by Neon Productions with Algeria), Yesim Ustaoglu’s Araf [trailer] (co-produced by CDC with Turkey and Germany), Italian filmmaker Ivano de Matteo’s Gli equilibristi [trailer] (co-produced by Babe Films), Jazmin Lopez’s Leones (co-produced by Petit Film with Argentina and the Netherlands - sales: Premium Films), Roberto Minervi’s US-Belgian-Italian co-production Low Tide [trailer] (sales: Doc & Film International), and Chinese director Wang Bing’s Three Sisters (produced by Album Productions with Hong Kong). Urban Distribution International is selling Israeli film The Cutoff Man by Hidan Hudel, while Celluloid Dreams is selling Japanese director Koji Wakamatsu’s The Millennial Rapture.
There is also great French presence at the Venice Days, with two Agat Films productions sold by Films Distribution: Sólveig Anspach’s Queen of Montreuil [trailer, film focus] and French-Israeli-Turkish co-production Inheritance [trailer, festival scope] by Hiam Abbass. At the Venice Days, there will also be Hervé Lasgouttes’s Crawl [trailer] (read more - sales: Premium Films), Rusudan Chkonia’s Keep Smiling [trailer] (produced by Ex Nihilo with Georgia and Luxembourg), Enzo D'Alò’s animation Pinocchio [trailer, film focus] (co-produced by Italy, France, Belgium and Luxembourg – sales: Rezo Films), Marc-Henri Wajnberg’s Kinshasa Kids [trailer, film focus] (co-produced by Belgium and France - sales: MK2), and Enrico Masi’s The Golden Temple (co-produced by Britain, Italy, and France). Urban Distribution International is selling Israeli title Epilogue by Amir Manor, while Films Distribution is selling Italian feature Steel by Stefano Mordini.
Finally, at the Critics’ Week, MPM Film is selling Romanian director Paul Negoescu’s A Month in Thailand [trailer, film focus] and Turkish-German co-production Mold [trailer] by Ali Aydin, while Tu Voir co-produced and is selling the ensemble film Water, co-produced by Israel and to be shown at a special screening out of competition.
(Translated from French)