A very French Locarno
by Fabien Lemercier
Aside from the entries in international competition (see news), French titles at the 60th Locarno International Film Festival (August 1-11) are mostly new ones, in particular in the competitive sidebar Filmmakers of the Present.
One of the titles competing in the section is Sébastien Betbeder’s Nuage (“Cloud”), starring Adrien Michaux, Nathalie Boutefeu and Aurore Clément. Produced by Sylvie Pialat (Producer on the Move 2007, see interview) for Les Films du Worso, the €1.32m feature was backed by CNC advances on receipts, as well as pre-sales from Canal+ and Ciné Cinéma.
Sales on the title are being handled by Wide Management, with French release slated for September 19 through Bodega Films.
The Filmmakers of the Present section line-up also features Philippe Fléchaire, Benoit Falize and Jérémy Boury’s Never Sleeps. The FX production is the story of a man who travels all over the world delivering parcels. From Berlin and Barcelona to London and Reykjavik, his life is nothing but hotels, planes, taxis, airports and delivery places. But one day things go wrong when a delivery fails to arrive and the globetrotting courier has to wait.
The third Gallic title in this sidebar is Pierre Léon’s Guillaume et les sortilèges (“Guillaume and the Spells”) – starring Guillaume Verdier, Serge Bozon, Valérie Crunchant and Laurent Lacotte – a Spy Films production like the director’s previous feature, Octobre (2006).
The prestigious open-air screenings on the Piazza Grande this year include Samuel Benchetrit’s J'ai toujours rêvé d'être un gangster (“I Always Dreamed of Being a Gangster”); Hou Hsiao-hsien’s French production Flight of the Red Balloon [+see also:
film profile]; Jacob Berger’s Swiss/French co-production Une Journée (“One Day”), with Bruno Todeschini and Natacha Régnier; Italian/French title Daniele Luchetti’s My Brother Is an Only Child [+see also:
interview: Daniele Luchetti
interview: Riccardo Tozzi
film profile]; and British/French feature Son of Rambow by Garth Jennings.
French/US co-production Winners and Losers – a documentary by Lech Kowalski (winner at the 2005 Venice Film Festival) on the 2006 Football World Cup – will close the event.
Other events of note are retrospectives on Claude Chabrol and Catherine Breillat in celebration of the festival’s 60th anniversary, while a prix d'Excellence will be presented to Michel Piccoli who will also hold a masterclass at the event.
The Ici & Ailleurs section features Alain Fleischer’s Morceaux de conversation avec Jean-Luc Godard (a Les Films d'Ici, Le Fresnoy and Centre Pompidou production); Louis Skorecki’s medium-length feature Le retour des cinéphiles; Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s La danse de l’enchanteresse and Brigitte Chataignier (a La Vie est Belle Films Associés production); Carole Laure’s French/Canadian co-production La capture, featuring Laurent Lucas (Flach Films); and Zhao Liang’s Chinese/French title Crime and Punishment.
Lastly, the Play Forward section comprises two medium length features – Vincent Dieutre’s Despues de la revolucion and Compilation, 12 instants d’amour partagés by Franck Beauvais – as well as Pierre Reimer’s Modell.
This year, the Industry Office is expecting numerous French representatives to attend, including UGC, Gaumont, EuropaCorp, MK2, Films Distribution, Metropolitan, CTV International, Ad Vitam, Epicentre, Onoma, Coach 14, Funny Balloons, Surreal Films, Novo Films and European distribution group Indie Circle.
(Translated from French)
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