Why Not Productions adds a second Palme d’Or to its trophy case
by Fabien Lemercier
- CANNES 2016: A total of three prizes for Pascal Caucheteux and Grégoire Sorlat’s company, which co-produced I, Daniel Blake, the winner of the 2016 Palme d'Or
Following the triumph of Jacques Audiard’s Dheepan [+see also:
Q&A: Jacques Audiard
film profile], which it executive-produced, at Cannes last year, Paris-based outfit Why Not Productions has now acquired the Holy Grail of the Palme d'Or for a second time on the Croisette with this year’s I, Daniel Blake [+see also:
film profile] by British director Ken Loach, which was co-produced by the outfit headed by Pascal Caucheteux and Grégoire Sorlat.
Why Not Productions also features on the winners’ list of the 69th Cannes Film Festival thanks to the Best Director Award that was handed out to another one of its co-productions: Graduation [+see also:
Q&A: Cristian Mungiu
film profile] by Romanian filmmaker Cristian Mungiu.
This year’s edition of Cannes also smiled upon Why Not with the Un Certain Regard Special Jury Prize that was bestowed upon its co-production The Red Turtle [+see also:
film profile], an animated film and the feature debut by Dutch-British director Michael Dudok de Wit.
These three accolades highlight the Paris-based company’s commitment for the long haul as it stands shoulder to shoulder with the best of European arthouse cinema, as I, Daniel Blake is the fifth fiction feature by Ken Loach and Graduation the third by Cristian Mungiu that Why Not has co-produced.
At Cannes, Why Not was also on the line-up of the official selection, in the midnight screenings, with Blood Father [+see also:
film profile] by Jean-François Richet, an English-language film starring Mel Gibson.
Standing out among Why Not’s projects is You Were Never Really Here by Scottish director Lynne Ramsay (in competition at Cannes in 2011 with We Need to Talk About Kevin), starring Joaquin Phoenix as a war veteran who has become an expert in rescuing prostitutes ensnared by human traffickers, and who comes face to face with some dangerously hostile forces in Manhattan.
Also in the starting blocks, with a shoot scheduled for this summer, is Les Fantômes d'Ismaël by Arnaud Desplechin (selected five times in competition at Cannes from 1992-2013), which will boast a cast including Mathieu Amalric, Marion Cotillard, Charlotte Gainsbourg and Louis Garrel.
Lastly, Why Not is also the driving force behind the upcoming film by Jacques Audiard, an adaptation of the novel The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt. This western will delve into the era of the gold rush, and will apparently star John C Reilly and Joaquin Phoenix.
(Translated from French)