7 items from 2014
Cannes – Oscar winner Michel Hazanavicius on Wednesday discussed his Cannes festival competition entry The Search, how political the film about the Chechnya conflict is and working with Annette Bening on his follow-up to The Artist. He was joined by wife Berenice Bejo, who stars in the film, producer Thomas Langmann and some of the other actors. The Search debuts in Cannes on Wednesday and has been eagerly awaited given its cast and director. A press screening in the morning drew some boos though. Bejo won the best actress award in Cannes last year for The Past. Photos:
- Georg Szalai
Welcome back to Cannes Check, In Contention's annual preview of the films in Competition at next month's Cannes Film Festival, which kicks off on May 14. Taking on different selections every day, we'll be examining what they're about, who's involved and what their chances are of snagging an award from Jane Campion's jury. Next up, from the most recent Oscar winner in the lineup: Michael Hazanavicius' "The Search." The director: Michel Hazanavicius (French, 47 years old). Three years ago, Hazanavicius was a somewhat unlikely Competition entrant: regarded as a lightweight commercial comedy director, his film was initially placed in a non-competitive slot, and only upgraded when another planned inclusion didn't pan out. That film, of course, was "The Artist." Now, Hazanavicius returns to the festival with an Oscar to his name, while he and his wife -- last year's Best Actress winner Bérénice Bejo -- are one of French cinema's premier power couples. »
- Guy Lodge
Paris-based sales and production powerhouse Wild Bunch has unveiled a packed Cannes slate, featuring future films from Paul Verhoeven, Gaspar Noé and Abdellatif Kechiche as well as Spring Breakers 2 and the remake of Maniac Cop.
The untitled Paul Verhoeven project is an adaptation of French writer Philippe Djian’s 2012 novel Oh!, revolving around a psychological game of cat-and-mouse between a businesswoman and a stalker who raped her, a crime for which she is seeking revenge.
“Casting is being finalised. It’s a very intelligent script but it’s also pure Verhoeven, extremely erotic and perverted, so the actress has to be prepared to take that on,” said Wild Bunch co-chief Vincent Maraval.
After partnering with Warner Bros. on the French production “Les Reines Du Ring,” which was released theatrically in the country last summer, WWE Studios has acquired U.S. distribution and worldwide remake rights to the comedy.
Jean-Marc Rudnicki directed the film about a mother attempting to reconnect with her estranged son who is a passionate WWE fan. To grab her son’s attention, she embarks on a rigorous training program to become a WWE Diva and enlists her colleagues at a supermarket to join her journey to become the “Queens of the Ring.”
Fabrice Goldstein, Antoine Rein and Thomas Langmann (“The Artist”), produced the comedy, that starred Marilou Berry, Nathalie Baye, Andre Dussollier, Audrey Fleurot, and featured WWE stars Mike “The Miz” Mizanin and Eve Torres.
- Marc Graser
Director: Fabrice Du Welz
Writer: Fathi Beddiar
U.S. Distributor: Rights Avilable
The very busy Belgian director Fabrice Du Welz makes our 2014 list twice (see the number 20 position), and this second entry feels like more of departure for the director. An cop thriller from a first time screenwriter, we’re curious to see Welz’s union with Joey Starr, along with uniting once more with the generally terrifying Philippe Nahon.
Gist: Weapon supervisor and shooting instructor for National Police, Vincent Milès is an expert in combat shooting. He’s only 25 and the elites from all around the globe are courting him. Against all odds, he refuses to join the prestigious field squads. His life takes a crucial turn when he meets Milo Cardena, a mysterious field agent, who drags him »
- Nicholas Bell
Director: Michel Hazanavicius
Writer: Michel Hazanvicius
Producers: Thomas Langmann
U.S. Distributor: Rights Available
Michel Hazanavicius’ follow-up feature to his Oscar winning 2011 film The Artist (he also directed a segment in the 2012 omnibus film, The Players), will undoubtedly be one of the most anticipated films of the year. Once again, he’s cast wife Berenice Bejo in a plum role in this remake of a 1948 Fred Zinnemann film starring Montgomery Clift. A modernized political climate and switch in gender dynamics should make this an interesting rehash. And of course, Annette Bening is always a notable presence.
Gist: A woman who works for a non-governmental organization (Ngo) forms a special relationship with a young boy in war-torn Chechnya.
Release Date: If it’s ready in time, we’ll assume Cannes, but if not, this will certainly be a fall fest premiere.
More Top 200 Most »
- Nicholas Bell
Madrid – Alec Baldwin will team with Spanish industry heavyweights Santiago Segura, Sony Pictures Releasing in Spain, Telefonica Studios, the film-tv production house of telco Telefonica, cable operator Ono, and Atresmedia Cine, the film arm of broadcast network to make Segura’s “Torrente 5,” the latest installment of the most successful movie franchise in Spanish history.
Segura’s own production label Amiguetes Entertainment will produce. “Torrente 5” is budgeted at €8.5 million ($11,5 million) in a year when Spanish production, bereft of any certainty about how governmental subsidies may be paid in the future, look set to divide between a clutch of potential commercial tentpoles and a host of tadpoles.
Long rumored for a part, Baldwin will play a villain in a comedy caper that sees sleazebag ex-cop Torrente, plyed by Segura, emerge from a penitentiary to plan a casino heist.
With Torrente directing operations, however, things can only go wrong.
In a parody of “Ocean’s Eleven, »
- John Hopewell
7 items from 2014
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