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Edouard Waintrop • General Delegate of the Directors’ Fortnight

"The best films without worrying about where they came from"

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- Edouard Waintrop, General Delegate of the Directors’ Fortnight, deciphers the 2013 selection

Edouard Waintrop • General Delegate of the Directors’ Fortnight

Encounter with the General Delegate of the Directors' Fortnight, whose 45th edition will take place from May 16th to 26th, 2013, as part of the 66th Cannes Film Festival.

Cineuropa: How would you define your 2013 selection (news)?
Edouard Waintrop: It is very diverse, with more self-assertive films than last year, each in their own genre, and maybe more "headliner" movies than in 2012. I spoke about "bombshells" because there are amazing movies from unknown filmmakers such as The Selfish Giant [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Clio Barnard
interview: Clio Barnard
film profile
]
by Clio Barnard, Blue Ruin by Jeremy Saulnier and Les Apaches by Thierry de Peretti, a masterful first feature film about Corsica.

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Is the strong presence of genre films an editorial decision or simply an opportunity linked to the films you discovered?
I have been a fan of genre cinema since I started going to the movies. It is therefore an editorial decision, but I've also noticed that more and more authors are looking into genre cinema: the offerings are slightly more numerous. For example, The Congress [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Ari Folman flirts a lot with science fiction, whilst Waltz With Bashir [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
has been described by some viewers as an animated documentary.

You have once again selected several comedies. Do you think filmmakers turn towards this genre because of the market’s requirements?
No. This year, there are two first films amongst the comedies. With Me Myself and Mum [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
, Guillaume Gallienne has adapted his own play, so it is a very personal choice that has nothing to do with demands made by the market. As for La fille du 14 juillet, we are immediately plunged into the off-beat universe of Antonin Peretjatko’s short and medium-length films. Some filmmakers make comedies for commercial reasons, others because it is in their character.

French productions (news) are massively represented in your selection. Why?
It was a problem we were unable to solve. I would have loved to see more films that something other than majority French productions. It's because of the intense activity of French production, but also maybe because other countries are not reacting as much for now. We are not very happy about it, but we chose the best films without worrying about where they came from.

What about the return of British production?
There is a new generation that is emerging and reconnecting with a few traditions. Clio Barnard is fascinated by the social dimension of cinema, but she also has a great poetic talent and she has made a movie that lives up to Ken Loach’s first films. As for Irish director Ruairi Robinson, who has an immense talent for directing, an English company gave him the means to pursue his dream with the horror and science fiction movie, Last Days On Mars [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
.

How do you analyze the absence of films from Eastern Europe, Spain and Scandinavia?
We saw two very interesting Norwegian films, and Swedish cinema is also not bad. A Spanish film was also very nearly selected, but Spain is extremely handicapped by the current financial crisis. As for Eastern Europe, I don't know why, but we didn't see anything particularly fascinating. We do, however, have a short film by a Hungarian director who should be followed very closely.

What is your relationship to the Official Selection?
Our areas are naturally defined and there is no friction. The producers decide to come to us or go elsewhere. That’s the rule of the game. If they opt for the Certain Regard sidebar, I sometimes think it is a shame, but I accept it. If they are selected in competition, which is what happened to a film I really loved, I congratulate them! It is Thierry Frémaux’s job to take the best films, and ours to open the door to younger filmmakers. But there is a film that deserved to be in competition and which will open the Directors’ Fortnight: so much the better for us!

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