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CANNES 2024

Seven days ahead of its press conference, Cannes prepares to unveil its selected titles

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- Trends, rumours and hypotheses abound on the nebulous home stretch prior to the press conference that will reveal the Official Selection on 11 April

Seven days ahead of its press conference, Cannes prepares to unveil its selected titles
Directors Andrea Arnold (© Oscilloscope Pictures), Yorgos Lanthimos (© Fabrizio de Gennaro/Cineuropa), Audrey Diwan (© MI482MFLL), Miguel Gomes (© Telmo Churro/O Som e a Fúria), Athina Rachel Tsangari, Jacques Audiard (© La Biennale di Venezia - foto ASAC), Alain Guiraudie (© Erdrokan), Dea Kulumbegashvili (© Jorge Fuembuena/SSIFF) and Paolo Sorrentino (© La Biennale di Venezia - foto ASAC)

With some very lengthy shortlists, films being submitted later and later, decisions to follow suit (compounded by the festival’s wish to allow itself the greatest possible clarity when making its selection, and maybe even by the tactic of making life a tad more difficult for the selectors at major festivals coming later in the year) and a stricter code of silence, the task of identifying, in advance, the lucky titles chosen for the different selections of the Cannes Film Festival has become an increasingly divinatory exercise fuelled by a number of investigatory elements collating rumours, tips, trends (before being chosen – or not – the films are seen by certain people, and their potential for Cannes is evaluated in a wider context), and even intuitions. The only things we currently know for certain are that The Second Act [+see also:
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by Quentin Dupieux (see the news) will open the 77th edition (14-25 May) and that Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga by Australia’s George Miller (see the news) will make a splash out of competition.

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However, the crystal ball is rapidly getting clearer and clearer now, exactly one week away from the Official Selection press conference in Paris, during which Thierry Frémaux (flanked by president Iris Knobloch) will reveal the results of his ruminations, judicious balancing acts and combinations that will inevitably have a snowball effect, subsequently redefining the content of the parallel sections. And so, let us fling open the window to Cannes and gaze into the 2024 "palantír".

In the official competition, jury chair Greta Gerwig (see the news) should allegedly be able to watch Bird [+see also:
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 by Brit Andrea Arnold, Kinds of Kindness [+see also:
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by Greece’s Yorgos Lanthimos, Limonov: The Ballad [+see also:
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 by Russia’s Kirill Serebrennikov, Grand Tour [+see also:
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interview: Marta Donzelli, Gregorio Pa…
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by Portugal’s Miguel Gomes, The Shrouds by Canada’s David Cronenberg, two Italian films (one of which is Parthenope by Paolo Sorrentino and the other a total surprise), Ainda estou aqui by Brazil’s Walter Salles, Anora by the USA’s Sean Baker, Oh, Canada by his fellow countryman Paul Schrader, Everybody Loves Touda [+see also:
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by Morocco’s Nabil Ayouch, Serpent's Path by Japan’s Kiyoshi Kurosawa and An Unfinished Film by China’s Lou Ye. If he manages to finish it before the deadline, we could add The Apprentice [+see also:
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by Danish-based, Iranian-born director Ali Abassi, and we also mustn’t overlook the likelihood of Maria by Chile’s Pablo Larrain being picked. Then, all bets are off for the remaining slots (apart from the French contingent) with, among other outsiders, Georgia’s Dea Kulumbegashvili with Those Who Find Me, Greece’s Athina Rachel Tsangari with the English-language flick Harvest, and even a wild card in the form of L’effacement by Algeria’s Karim Moussaoui.

As for the French hopefuls (the fates of whom are traditionally sealed on the evening before the revelation of the Official Selection), it’s anybody’s guess, apart from Jacques Audiard, who seems an almost dead cert with Emilia Perez [+see also:
film review
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. The most prominent predictions swirling around are Miséricorde by Alain Guiraudie and La Chambre de Mariana by Emmanuel Finkiel. The eagerly anticipated Emmanuelle by Audrey Diwan is apparently in a somewhat uncertain position, going for the competition or nothing at all. The other female directors among the most credible candidates are Delphine and Muriel Coulin with The Quiet Son, and Patricia Mazuy with La prisonnière de Bordeaux [+see also:
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interview: Patricia Mazuy
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]
. In addition, Thierry de Peretti might be in the running with À son image [+see also:
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interview: Thierry de Peretti
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]
 (which is in the final stages of editing).

For the rest of the Official Selection (Out of Competition, Cannes Première, Un Certain Regard, Special Screenings and Midnight Screenings), a lap of honour for the USA’s Francis Ford Coppola (with this year marking the 50th anniversary of his first Palme d’Or, for The Conversation) with his new opus, Megalopolis, is not totally out of the question (provided that a distributor such as Apple gets on board quickly). The programme could potentially also comprise the documentaries The Belle from Gaza [+see also:
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interview: Yolande Zauberman
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]
by France’s Yolande Zauberman and Meeting with Pol Pot [+see also:
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by Cambodia’s Rithy Panh, When the Light Breaks [+see also:
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trailer
interview: Rúnar Rúnarsson
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]
by Iceland’s Runar Runarsson, The Village Next to Paradise [+see also:
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by Somalia’s Mo Harawe, Viet and Nam [+see also:
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by Vietnam’s Truong Minh Quy, Une part manquante by Belgium’s Guillaume Senez, Submergée by French-Lithuanian director Alanté Kavaité, Things That You Kill by Iran’s Alireza Khatami, Dreams by Norway’s Dag Johan Haugerud (the second instalment in his trilogy that began in the Berlin Panorama with Sex [+see also:
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interview: Dag Johan Haugerud
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]
), Mexico 86 by Belgian-Guatemalan helmer Cesar Diaz and On Becoming a Guinea Fowl [+see also:
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interview: Rungano Nyoni, Susan Chardy
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]
by British-Zambian filmmaker Rungano Nyoni. Standing out among the possible French features (unless they are headed to Venice) are Three Friends by Emmanuel Mouret, Spectateurs by Arnaud Desplechin, Marcello Mio [+see also:
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by Christophe Honoré, Quand vient l’automne by François Ozon, and Jim’s Story by Arnaud and Jean-Marie Larrieu, and perhaps even Beating Hearts by Gilles Lellouche or the medium-length film C'est pas moi by Leos Carax. It’s also worth pointing out the tight competition between a handful of young French filmmakers: Noémie Merlant with The Balconettes [+see also:
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]
, Jessica Palud with Maria [+see also:
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, Charlène Favier with Oxana, Aude Léa Rapin with Planète B., Laetitia Dosch with Le procès du chien [+see also:
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interview: Laetitia Dosch
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]
and Les Fantômes [+see also:
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interview: Jonathan Millet
interview: Pauline Seigland
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]
 by Jonathan Millet.

As for the parallel sections, Ma vie ma gueule [+see also:
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 by the late Sophie Fillières could embellish the showcase of the Directors’ Fortnight, much like, among others, Sang craché des lèvres belles by France’s Jean-Charles Hue, Une langue universelle by Canada’s Matthew Rankin, All We Imagine as Light by India’s Payal Kapadia, Milano by Belgium’s Christina Vandekerckhove, the documentary La chambre d’ombres by Colombia’s Camile Restrepo, Morlaix by Spaniard Jaime Rosales, Agora by Tunisia’s Ala Eddine Slim, Stranger Eyes by Singapore’s Yeo Siew Hua and Eight Postcards from Utopia by Romania’s Radu Jude and Christian Ferencz-Flatz, and even Horizonte by Colombia’s César Augusto Acevedo.

Moving on to the Critics’ Week, some of the titles that we could highlight from the extensive shortlists still in consideration today (while we await the definitive choices for the Official Selection) are September Says by French-Greek helmer Ariane Labed, The Mountain Bride by Italy’s Maura Delpero, Little Trouble Girls by Slovenia’s Urška Djukić, Simón de la montaña by Argentina’s Federico Luis Tachella, My Sunshine [+see also:
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by Japan’s Hiroshi Okuyama, and the French movies Eat The Night [+see also:
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 by Jonathan Vinel and Caroline Poggi, Wild Diamond [+see also:
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interview: Agathe Riedinger
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]
by Agathe Riedinger, Un mohican by Frédéric Farrucci, Le Royaume [+see also:
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interview: Julien Colonna
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]
 by Julien Colonna and Vingt Dieux [+see also:
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interview: Louise Courvoisier
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]
 by Louise Courvoisier.

Finally, a clutch of animated flicks could also manage to wangle their way onto the Croisette this year (although Cannes has never been very fond of the genre, especially with the Annecy Film Festival coming soon after it in France). In particular, the potential titles include Memoir of a Snail by Australia’s Adam Elliot, Flow [+see also:
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by Latvia’s Gints Zilbalodis, Ghost Cat Anzu by Japan’s Yoko Kuno and Nobuhiro Yamashita, and The Most Precious of Cargoes [+see also:
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by France’s Michel Hazanavicius.

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(Translated from French)

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