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CANNES 2017 Competition/France

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Doillon, Hazanavicius, Ozon and Campillo have the Palme d’Or in their crosshairs

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- Rodin, Redoubtable, L'Amant double and BPM (Beats Per Minute) are all in the running for the top prize

Doillon, Hazanavicius, Ozon and Campillo have the Palme d’Or in their crosshairs
Rodin, Redoubtable, L'Amant double and BPM (Beats Per Minute)

Four French filmmakers have been selected in competition (see the news) at the 70th Cannes Film Festival (17-28 May), a vertigo-inducing, oxygen-starved environment that three of them will be meeting again, while the fourth will be exploring it for the first time.

With Rodin [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, 73-year-old Jacques Doillon is making a spectacular comeback, as his two previous experiences in competition at Cannes date back to 1979 (The Hussy) and 1984 (La Pirate). For his 28th feature, the director, who has also been selected four times in competition at Berlin (in 1990, 1991, 1993 and 1998) and Venice (in 1986, 1987, 1996 and 2003), has focused his story on a famous figure from the history of art: Auguste Rodin (1840-1917). The film kicks off in 1880, as the sculptor receives his first state commission, and retraces the course of his life over the subsequent two decades, including his passionate encounter with Camille Claudel. The top-notch cast includes Vincent Lindon (Best Actor Award at Cannes in 2015), Izïa Higelin and Séverine Caneele (Best Actress Award at Cannes in 1999). Produced by Kristina Larsen for Les Films du Lendemain on a budget of €5.35 million, Rodin was co-produced by Wild Bunch (which will distribute the film in France from 24 May and is in charge of the international sales), France 3 CinémaArtémis Productions and Cohen Media Group. Having been pre-purchased by Canal+ and Ciné+, the feature also received backing from the CNC’s advance on receipts. 

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With his sixth feature, Redoubtable [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: Michel Hazanavicius
film profile
]
Michel Hazanavicius (also 50) will be making his third appearance in competition, following The Artist [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Michel Hazanavicius
film profile
]
 in 2011 (Best Actor Award on the Croisette, subsequently winning five Oscars in 2012, including Best Picture and Best Director) and The Search [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: Michel Hazanavicius
film profile
]
 (which took part fairly recently, in 2014). Written by the director, based on the novel Un an après by Anne Wiazemsky, the story gets under way in Paris in 1967, as Jean-Luc Godard, the leading filmmaker of his generation, is shooting La Chinoise with the woman he loves, Anne Wiazemsky, 20 years his junior. They are happy, charming and in love, and they get married. But the film’s reception triggers a profound self-examination in Jean-Luc, and the events of May 1968 will catalyse this process... The cast includes Louis GarrelStacy MartinBérénice Bejo and Grégory Gadebois. Produced by Les Compagnons du Cinéma (Florence Gastaud, Michel Hazanavicius and Riad Sattouf), Redoubtable had a budget of €11.11 million, including a co-production by France 3 Cinéma and pre-purchases by Canal+ and Ciné+. The French distribution will be handled by StudioCanal, while the international sales are being entrusted to Wild Bunch.

With L'Amant double [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, 49-year-old François Ozon is also heading back to the Cannes competition for the third time (after Swimming Pool [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
 in 2003 and Young and Beautiful [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: François Ozon
film profile
]
in 2013). He has also competed four times at Berlin (in 2000, 2002, 2007 and 2009) and three times at Venice (2004, 2010 and 2016, with Frantz [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
Q&A: François Ozon
film profile
]
) and San Sebastián (Special Award in 2009, victorious in 2012 with In the House [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, and in 2014). His 17th feature, which he wrote the screenplay for himself, revolves around a fragile and depressed young woman who begins a course of psychotherapy and falls in love with her shrink. A few months later, they move in together, but she discovers that her lover has kept part of his identity secret from her... Toplining the film are Marine VacthJérémie Renier and Jacqueline Bisset. Produced by Eric and Nicolas Altmayer for Mandarin ProductionL'Amant double was co-produced by Belgian outfit Scope Pictures. It will be distributed in France by Mars and is being sold overseas by Films Distribution.

Lastly, 54-year-old Robin Campillo will be making his debut appearance in the quest for the Palme d'Or with BPM (Beats Per Minute) [+see also:
film review
trailer
film focus
interview: Arnaud Valois
interview: Robin Campillo
film profile
]
, his third film as a director, following They Came Back and Eastern Boys [+see also:
trailer
interview: Robin Campillo
festival scope
film profile
]
 (unveiled in the Horizons section at Venice in 2004 and 2013, with a win into the bargain for the latter). The co-writer and editor of virtually all of Laurent Cantet’s films, Campillo wrote the story of his new film, set in the early 1990s, in partnership with Philippe Mangeot. With AIDS having already claimed countless lives for nearly ten years, the Act Up Paris activists intensify their actions to fight against total indifference. Nathan, a newcomer to the organisation, has his world shaken up by Sean, who throws his last remaining shreds of strength into his commitment to the cause... The cast includes such names as Nahuel Perez BiscayartAdèle HaenelArnaud Valois and Antoine Reinartz. Produced by Hugues Charbonneau and Marie-Ange Luciani for Les Films de PierreBPM (Beats Per Minute) had a budget of €5.38 million, including co-productions by Page 114, France 3 Cinéma, Memento Films Production and FD Productions. Having been pre-purchased by Canal+ and Ciné+, the feature was also supported by the CNC’s advance on receipts and the Centre-Val de Loire region. The French release will be handled by Memento Films, while the international sales are being managed by Films Distribution.

(Translated from French)

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