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Godard, Desplechin sign Calais migrants petition

Godard, Desplechin sign Calais migrants petition
27,000 people sign petition spearheaded by French filmmakers in four days.

A petition initiated by French filmmakers last week calling on the French government to do more to help the inhabitants of the Calais “jungle” in northern France is gathering momentum, with Jean-Luc Godard and Arnaud Desplechin among the signatories.

The population of the squalid camps around the port of Calais has swollen to 6,000 people over the past month, due to the rising numbers of migrants arriving in Europe, as well as tighter security measures around the port and Channel Tunnel.

French filmmakers Nicolas Philibert, Ariane Doublet, Catherine Corsini and Christophe Ruggia spearheaded the petition initiative after visiting the camps last week, kicking it off on Wednesday (Oct 21) with the support of some 800 French artists.

More than 28,000 people had signed the petition by Sunday evening (Oct 25). The objective is to garner at least 35,000 signatures.

Philibert, Doublet, Corsinin and Ruggia said they had been shocked by the “appalling living
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Jia Zhangke to receive French award at Cannes

Jia Zhangke to receive French award at Cannes
Chinese director of A Touch Of Sin to be feted by French Film Directors Guild at Cannes Film Festival.

The French Film Directors Guild, which runs Cannes parallel section Directors’ Fortnight, is to honour Chinese director Jia Zhangke with its Carrosse d’Or (Golden Carriage) award during this year’s festival.

The guild, known as the Société de Réalisateurs de Films (Sfr) in France, will present Jia with the award on the opening night of Directors’ Fortnight (May 14-24).

The guild published an extract of a letter sent to Jia by the Sfr board, explaining why it had chosen him for the honour: “We are captivated by the boldness of your body of works. Your ability to capture the constant changes in Chinese society, to show its corruption and violence, clearly and concisely, your commitment to younger generations, resonate within each of us.

“Your films are visual poems, with the precision of each shot offering a constant
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Mohammadi starts prison sentence

Director re-imprisoned over the weekend in notorious Evin jail.

Concerns are growing for Iranian filmmaker and women’s rights activist Mahnaz Mohammadi following reports she started a five-year jail sentence in Iran’s notorious Evin prison on the outskirts of Tehran last weekend.

The filmmaker was given a five-year prison sentence earlier this year on charges of being involved in “a plot against state security” and producing “propaganda against the government”.

She was first arrested in July 2011 on charges linked to her work with the Western media outlets such as the BBC, Al Jazeera, Radio France and Voice of America. She was imprisoned briefly before being placed under house arrest.

There has been no official statement on her incarceration in Evin but sources close to the filmmaker in Paris say she was taken into custody on June 7.

The French Directors Guild (Sfr) launched a petition on Thursday [June 12] calling for Mohammadi’s release.

“We are greatly
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Mohammadi starts five-year prison sentence

Director re-imprisoned over the weekend in notorious Evin jail.

Concerns are growing for Iranian filmmaker and women’s rights activist Mahnaz Mohammadi following reports she started a five-year jail sentence in Iran’s notorious Evin prison on the outskirts of Tehran last weekend.

The filmmaker was given a five-year prison sentence earlier this year on charges of being involved in “a plot against state security” and producing “propaganda against the government”.

She was first arrested in July 2011 on charges linked to her work with the Western media outlets such as the BBC, Al Jazeera, Radio France and Voice of America. She was imprisoned briefly before being placed under house arrest.

There has been no official statement on her incarceration in Evin but sources close to the filmmaker in Paris say she was taken into custody on June 7.

The French Directors Guild (Sfr) launched a petition on Thursday [June 12] calling for Mohammadi’s release.

“We are greatly
See full article at ScreenDaily »

Key Players in the 2011 Cannes Market: Wild Bunch

We complete our look at the key players in the Cannes market with the sales agent that has the most number of highly anticipated film projects. Wild Bunch came to the fest with popular items such as Polisse, The Artist and The Kid With a Bike, and it looks like they might outfit Venice and Tiff with some premium titles with Wong Kar-wai's The Grandmasters being one of the most sought after titles this coming August/September. Here's their lengthy list of auteur film projects. Bye Bye Blondie by Virginie Despentes - Post-Production In Turmoil (Dans La Tourmente) by Christophe Ruggia - Post-Production That Summer (Un Ete Brulant) by Philippe Garrel - Post-Production Bollywood - Completed Declaration Of War by Valerie Donzelli - Completed Hideaways by Agnes Merlet - Completed Leila by Audrey Estrougo - Completed Michel Petrucciani/ Body And Soul by Michael Radford - Completed Polisse by Maïwenn
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

The Devils

The Devils
Ocean Films

Gaspar Noe's "Irreversible" isn't the only film from France these days that's guaranteed to court controversy.

Enter "The Devils", a relentlessly explosive bit of business about a troubled young man and his equally troubled younger sister who are continually running away from their various foster homes. It screened at the City of Lights/City of Angeles Festival in Los Angeles.

It's not difficult to understand why they have trouble fitting in. While the highly volatile Joseph (Vincent Rottiers) has the bottled-up rage of a career juvenile delinquent, his seemingly autistic, slightly younger sister Chloe (Adele Haenel) doesn't speak a word and resists any form of human contact.

From the first frames, it's very clear that sophomore director Christophe Ruggia's storytelling approach is anything but routine. There's a highly charged, threateningly uncaged dynamic in place that has no patience for convention.

But while the jagged bursts of violence are to be expected, Ruggia and co-writer Olivier Lorelle also have seen fit to toss in some seriously unsettling scenes of sexual awareness between the film's alarmingly young-looking leads.

Those two remarkable, completely unaffected performances -- in particular, Haenel with her strange smile often in the presence of a haunting, wide-eyed trance -- leave an indelible imprint even as the film threatens to collapse under the weight of the mounting shock waves.

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