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London – Only days away from financial collapse late last month, the 16th edition of the Mumbai Film Festival will get under way next month (Oct. 14-21). It will feature 185 films from around the world.
Prominent selections include Xavier Dolan’s “Mommy,” Mike Leigh’s “Mr. Turner,” Ken Loach’s “Jimmy’s Hall,” Richard Linklater’s “Boyhood” and Jean-Luc Godard’s “Goodbye to Language.” Films will vie for cash prizes totaling $200,000.
The festival’s continued existence is thanks to a rallying cry led by celebrity film critic (and former Variety correspondent) Anupama Chopra. Her agitation caused several sizeable financial donations to be made by celebrities including filmmaker Vidhu Vinod Chopra, industrialist Anand Mahindra and actor Aamir Khan, among others.
This year, iconic French actress Catherine Deneuve will be given the festival’s lifetime achievement award. Masterclasses with cinematographer Christopher Doyle and filmmaker Mahamat Saleh Haroun have also been announced.
The festival’s market, »
- Naman Ramachandran
The Mumbai Film Festival (Oct 14-21), recently saved by public donations following a funding crunch, unveiled its line-up today including the India Gold Competition and International Competition for first features.
The International Competition includes Benjamin Naishtat’s History Of Fear, Sudabeh Mortezai’s Macondo and Chaitanya Tamhane’s Court, fresh from its Venice success. The India Gold competition includes Bikas Mishra’s Chauranga, Avinash Arun’s The Fort (Killa) and Ms Prakash Babu’s Fig Fruit And The Wasps (see full list below).
Serbian director Goran Paskaljevic will head the India Gold jury, while the Dimensions Mumbai short film competition jury comprises directors Gauri Shinde and Homi Adajania, actors Satish Kaushik and Huma Qureshi and critic Rajeev Masand.
Key films outside the competition sections include Xavier Dolan’s [link »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Liz Shackleton)
More than 350 films from 60 countries will screen over the course of the festival, set to run in Brazil from September 24–October 8.
Selections include Richard Linklater’s Boyhood (pictured), Sebastian Del Amo’s Mexican foreign language Oscar submission Cantinflas, Xavier Dolan’s Mommy, Moshen Makhmalbaf’s The President, Mike Leigh’s Mr Turner and The Princess Of France by Matías Piñeiro.
In partnership with the British Council, the Hitchcock Classics section will screen five of the director’s silent features accompanied by live music by pianist Cadu Pereira.
Programmes include »
- email@example.com (Jeremy Kay)
. Quebecois helmer Charles Biname’s English-language pic about the cat-and-mouse games between an insidious patient and a mental-hospital director investigating a shrink’s disappearance is well acted and directed, but never feels at home in its adopted medium. Despite its widescreen lensing, it’s clearly destined for the tube, to which its strengths and limitations alike are better suited.
After a short prologue depicting a boy being ignored by his famous opera-singer mother in 1947 Cuba, where she’s holding a recital, the pic flashes forward to an unnamed Canadian city in 1966. There, one Dr. Lawrence (Colm Feore) is stirring anxiety among his fellow staffers at a hospital, having not shown up for work. He vanished the prior day after an appointment with longtime patient Michael (Xavier Dolan), who has hinted he knows where the missing doc is. Staff chief Dr. Green (Bruce Greenwood), an administrator who seldom sees patients despite his psychiatric qualifications, »
- Dennis Harvey
This year’s Toronto International Film Festival boasted dozens upon dozens of films to sate the cinema-hungry masses, and we’re willing to bet that we saw…well, at least a hearty fraction of them. The festival has just wrapped up, and as we all attempt to recover from ten-plus days of universally excellent film-going, it only seems appropriate to revisit our favorite films of the festival. These are the titles that stuck with us, the ones we recommended to anyone who would listen, the ones we couldn’t quite shake, a big mix of the funny and the fantastic, the sad and the silly, the wild and the weird. Are these the best films of Tiff? We certainly think so. Nightcrawler When did Jake Gyllenhaal learn to be so goddamn terrifying? In Dan Gilroy‘s fierce and fearless directorial debut, the man who would be Prince of Persia (and eventually king, too »
- FSR Staff
Elephant Song (La chanson de l’éléphant), 2014.
Directed by Charles Binamé.
A psychiatrist is drawn into a complex mind game when he questions a disturbed patient about the disappearance of a colleague.
A young boy seeks out his mother who is a successful opera singer at a party but she has no interest in dealing with him. The flashback sequence transitions to a present day scene. An investigation is taking place involving the conduct of a psychiatrist when dealing with a patient who claims to have information about the whereabouts of a co-worker. Further flashbacks occur revealing that the home life is unsettled for the medical officer and that his ex-wife works with him at the psychiatric facility.
Everything revolves around a patient who has a fascination with elephants and seeks to manipulate the circumstances »
- Trevor Hogg
Directing and releasing five films across the last four years, with three of them premiering at Cannes, and another at Venice, you might understand why Xavier Dolan might not have time to return phone calls. And given the limited stateside distribution of his films, it might also be easy to forget that in addition to writing and directing, Dolan is a pretty good actor, having appeared in three of his features (“I Killed My Mother,” “Heartbeats” and “Tom At The Farm”). He’s a charismatic and playful screen presence, and when Charles Binamé called with a role in his two-hander “Elephant Song,” Dolan’s attraction to the part seems obvious. It’s a scenery-chewing, spotlight-ready role, and he nimbly makes the most of it. Unfortunately, the film around Dolan’s performance is as static and restrained as he is energetic and loose. Based on the play by award-winning playwright Nicolas Billon, »
- Kevin Jagernauth
• After singing his praises on Twitter, Jessica Chastain has been approached by director Xavier Dolan (Mommy) to play a part in his first English-language feature The Death and Life of John F. Donovan. Chastain would play the “villain,” an editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine. The satirical film follows an American movie star with a secret correspondence with an 11 year-old in London. [The Wrap]
• Morgan Freeman has reportedly been offered the role of Ildarin in the Ben-Hur remake. Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted) is directing the film that will be based more on the 1880 Lew Wallace novel Ben-Hur: A Tale Of The Christ than the 1959 film starring Charlton Heston. »
- Jake Perlman
Glenn here to talk about two of my favourite people, Xavier Dolan and Jessica Chastain. We don't usually discuss casting here at The Film Experience, especially this early into a film's existence, because they can so easily fluctuate and change without a moment's notice. This, however? This is casting news we absolutely must discuss.
Dolan's most recent film (it's hard to keep track) is Mommy, which won the Jury Prize at Cannes and is getting big plaudits out of Toronto including this one from Nathaniel labelling it his best work best. Not one to rest on his 25-year-old laurels, the Canadian wunderkind Xavier Dolan has cast Jessica Chastain in his English-language debut!! I'm not sure how much about The Death and Life of John F. Donovan we know already, but the exceptionally coiffed Dolan says it is a satire of the industry and that Chastain will play the villain, an editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine. »
- Glenn Dunks
Dolan says the film is a more "dramatic than humorous" Hollywood satire which follows a successful American actor who has secretive correspondence with an 11 year old in London.
Chastain will play a villainous role, that of an editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine that wants to ruin the lives of numerous stars. Dolan got in touch with Chastain following her tweeting about enjoying "Mommy" at Cannes.
Filming begins next year in Montreal, New York, Miami, England and Eastern Europe.
Source: Indiewire »
- Garth Franklin
Quebecois writer/director/actor Xavier Dolan has been making acclaimed films in Canada for the last few years, and his most recent, Mommy, was a huge hit at Cannes this past May. Mommy was up for the Palme d’Or, and while it didn’t take that prize, Dolan did win the Jury Prize for the film. At the […]
- Russ Fischer
Xavier Dolan has confirmed with Bent (via The Playlist) that Jessica Chastain will play the antagonist in his new film, and English language debut, The Death and Life of John F. Donovan, of which he's been teasing for about a year now. Chastain, who was "blown away" by Dolan's Mommy will reportedly play "the editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine" in the pic, which is said to be a Hollywood satire. "It dawned on me that I should ask Jessica about playing the 'villain' role in John F. Donovan," Dolan told Bent. "There is this character of the editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine. The movie really is a satire of the business -- more dramatic than humorous. And there's this antagonistic figure that wants to ruin the lives of ever star, especially that of the lead character. And I reached out to Jessica and she read the script. She loved it, »
- Brad Brevet
I caught Charles Biname's Elephant Song at the Toronto Film Festival and in my review called the film a little "lackluster", but noted the performances from Xavier Dolan and Bruce Greenwood as particularly strong as the two go toe-to-toe in an adaptation of the Nicolas Billon play of the same name. Now a trailer for the flick has arrived and can be viewed below. Set in the mid'60s, the story centers on a psychiatrist that has gone missing and the last person he spoke to was a disturbed patient by the name of Michael Aleen (Dolan) and in an effort to get to the bottom of his disappearance Dr. Green (Greenwood) intends to have a chat with the young man, not knowing anything about his history or his desire to play mind games with those he comes in contact with. Catherine Keener, Carrie-Anne Moss and Colm Feore co-star. »
- Brad Brevet
Today's roundup of news and views has to begin with A.O. Scott's essay, "The Death of Adulthood in American Culture." We're also looking at pieces on Michelangelo Antonioni's The Passenger (1975), Preston Sturges's The Lady Eve (1941), Dennis Hopper's The Last Movie (1971), Edward D. Wood Jr.'s Glen or Glenda (1953), Adrian Lyne's Flashdance (1983) and Walter Benjamin on the nature of film. Plus: Jessica Chastain will star in Xavier Dolan's first film in English, Isabelle Huppert has three projects in the works—and more. » - David Hudson »
Joining his cast is none other than Jessica Chastain, herself having risen to prominence over the past few years, with her 2011 features The Tree of Life and Take Shelter followed by roles in films such as Zero Dark Thirty, Mama, and the upcoming features A Most Violent Year and Crimson Peak.
The film itself, titled The Death and Life of John F. Donovan, revolves around an American movie star who secretly corresponds with an 11-year-old in England, and Chastain will be playing the editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine. Chastain can be seen next in theatres in the Christopher Nolan film Interstellar, while Xavier Dolan’s Mommy will be opening in wide release in Canada later this month, »
- Deepayan Sengupta
Greenwood stars as a psychiatrist who takes on a troubled new inpatient (Dolan).
When another doctor goes missing, the patient promises to help with the investigation, on certain conditions.
Jessica Chastain has been announced to star in Dolan's next directorial project, The Death And Life Of John F Donovan.
Elephant Song is yet to be given a release date. »
The actress has joined the Mommy director's English language debut.
"I went back and scrolled down the tweets and there was this lovely tweet where Jessica was saying that she had liked Mommy.
"It dawned on me that I should ask Jessica about playing the 'villain' role in John F Donovan," he continued. "There is this character of the editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine.
"The movie really is a satire of the business - more dramatic than humorous. And there's this antagonistic figure that wants to ruin the lives of every star, especially that of the lead character. And »
Jessica Chastain is circling a key supporting role in “Mommy” director Xavier Dolan's first English-language feature “The Death and Life of John F. Donovan,” an individual familiar with the project has told TheWrap. According to Dolan, “Donovan” follows “an American movie star with everything working out for him who has a secretive correspondence with an 11-year-old in London.” Chastain saw Dolan's “Mommy” at Cannes and gave the film a ringing endorsement on Twitter. Word got back to Dolan, who approached the actress for his next film, an overture that was first reported by Indiewire's queer blog Bent. Also read: Jessica Chastain Says ‘Miss. »
- Jeff Sneider
It seems good fortune just keeps raining down on wunderkind Xavier Dolan. This spring, he hit Cannes with "Mommy," a movie nearly everyone fell in love with (we certainly did), and walked away from the Croisette with the Jury Prize (with some arguing it deserved the Palme d'Or). He also used his time in France to announce his English language debut, "The Death And Life Of John F. Donovan," and now he's nabbed a pretty big name for a leading role. Our friends over at Bent report that Jessica Chastain is joining Dolan's film, and it's no coincidence, as she was a big fan of "Mommy" (see below). And it led to Dolan to reaching out to the actress. "It dawned on me that I should ask Jessica about playing the 'villain' role in 'John F. Donovan,'" Dolan told Bent. "There is this character of the editor-in-chief of a gossip magazine. »
- Kevin Jagernauth
Xavier Dolan first attracted international attention when his first film I Killed My Mother (J’ai tué ma mère) won three awards at the Director’s Fortnight program of the 2009 Cannes Film Festival. His following three pics have also been highly rated by industry professionals, earning acclaim at prestigious international festivals around the world. Now the Quebec actor and filmmaker stars in Elephant Song, a big screen adaptation of Canadian writer Nicolas Billon’s play of the same name. Billon’s play debuted in 2004 at the Stratford Festival in Ontario. A native of Ottawa who grew up in Montreal, he also wrote the acclaimed play Greenland.
The drama follows a psychiatrist investigating the disappearance of his colleague who questions a disturbed patient (Dolan) and finds himself caught in a complex mind game. With the film screening at Tiff, the first trailer has arrived.
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