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Two strong British programmes are running at top Mexican film festivals this month.
Mexico City documentary festival Docs Df (Oct 15-24) hosts the second leg of the Docunexion programme that British Council is running in partnership with Imcine, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Docs Df and Ambulante.
This training and mentorship initiative for emerging documentary makers from the UK and Mexico is delivered as part of the 2015 UK-Mexico year of exchange.
Jerry Rothwell, André Singer and Jo Lapping from the UK will give further dedicated development support to participants alongside three Mexican mentors. The programme culminates in a pitching session in front of international decision makers.
Claire Aguilar, programming director at Sheffield Doc/Fest, and Britdoc Foundation’s Luke Moody will attend as jury members alongside Julien Temple who will deliver a masterclass to accompany screenings of his films The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle, Oil City Confidential and The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson.
The programme »
Rome – Terence Davies will be celebrated with a career nod by Italy’s Turin Film Festival where a selection of the British auteur’s works, spanning from his pluriprized 1988 feature debut “Distant Voices, Still Lives” to his most recent drama, “Sunset Song,” will unspool.
Turin, which is Italy’s preeminent event dedicated to indie cinema, praised Davies as a “master at combining melancholy, cruelty, irony and desperation.” Davies is expected to make the trek to receive the fest’s Gran Premio Torino and introduce “Distant Voices.”
He will receive the award before the Italian premiere of “Sunset Song” (pictured) which recently bowed as a special presentation in Toronto.
“Sunset Song,” which is Davies seventh and most epically scaled feature, chronicles the struggle of a young woman, played by Agyness Deyn, to hold on to her farm in Northeast Scotland during World War I.
Guest director of this year’s 33rd »
- Nick Vivarelli
Julien Temple: We were £1m over-budget before we started. After its release, I had a breakdown and had to leave the country
Julien Temple, director
I’d read Colin MacInnes’s book Absolute Beginners as a teenager and it enthralled me. I wanted to turn it into a screen musical that captured the birth of the teenage era in Britain – and the arrival of a black presence in music.
Continue reading »
- Interviews by Ben Beaumont-Thomas
World festival roundup: Highlights of the upcoming fall and winter season promise a wide range of cinematic treats around the world. Festivals listed in chronological order.
Aug. 27-Sept. 7
World Film Festival
Fest will open with the world premiere of “Muhammad,” the 171-minute epic from Iranian director Majid Majidi, shot by Italian cinematographer Vittorio Storaro. Mwff has received a record number of short films — over 1,200 (an increase of 42% over 2014) from some 64 countries, “evidence of the vitality of today’s young filmmakers,” notes Mwff president Serge Losique. Fest is adding a Chinese Cinema section with more than 10 new features.
The fest, above, nestled in the mountains of Colorado, has always been an intimate, casual, carefully curated event that isn’t just a competition but also a celebration of the best in film. Even though the festival doesn’t announce its lineup until the day before it begins unspooling, »
- Iain Blair
Industry veteran to take executive producer and producer duties at new firm.
Chris Moll, who stepped down as head of film at Creative England in April, has resurfaced at burgeoning film and TV production company Catalyst Global Media.
Moll has been hired to takes on both executive producer and producer duties at the London-based firm, which launched in May.
Reporting to Catalyst co-founder and CEO Charlotte Walls, Moll will be charged with sourcing high-quality, commercially viable projects for Catalyst’s development and production slate.
He will also be responsible for expanding the company’s national and international partnerships with key talent, producers, agents, publishers and financiers, and identifying new opportunities for collaboration across film, television, digital and music.
Walls said: “Chris brings tremendous strength as an award-winning film producer and seasoned entertainment executive with passion and vision for current projects and the future of Catalyst.”
Moll said he would help build “a slate focused on both creative »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
Exclusive: Germany’s Oldenburg International Film Festival is to play host to the nomination committee for the European Film Awards’ European Discovery - Prix Fipresci for the first time this year.
An international jury will convene in the North German town of Oldenburg on Sept 19 for their deliberations and announce the five nominated films for the award - dedicated to first features by European directors - at the festival’s closing ceremony on Sept 20.
The jury will comprise German producer Dagmar Jacobsen; Transilvania Iff’s artistic director Mihai Chirilov; Polish critic/actor Krzysztof Kwiatkowski; UK producer Lynda Myles; Italian journalist/festival programmer Marco Spagnoli; Rotterdam Iff programmer Gerwin Tamsma; and UK critic/festival programmer Neil Young
Festival director Torsten Neumann told ScreenDaily: “It’s a great sign of recognition for us as it shows that the Efa regards Oldenburg as the right place for its jury, with its reputation as the European festival of discoveries.”
Last year’s »
- email@example.com (Martin Blaney)
A new documentary about David Bowie and his Australian experience will have its Australian premiere at the Melbourne International Film Festival on Sunday.
Let.s Dance: Bowie Down Under explores the forgotten story behind Bowie.s biggest hit record . and how an unlikely journey, deep into the Australian outback, led to its unprecedented success around the world.
The film features never-before-seen archive footage of Bowie, plus new interviews with key collaborators and commentators..
Charting the unique 35mm shoot for Let.s Dance . from the remote outpost of Carinda to Sydney.s Parramatta Road . the film explores Bowie.s fascination with Australia, at a pivotal moment in time.
The film introduces the forgotten stars of Bowie.s groundbreaking videos, Joelene King and Geeling Ng, as well as award-winning filmmakers David Mallet and Julien Temple, lauded MTV host and Rolling Stone Us editor, Kurt Loder, music historian, Norman Jay MBE, and renowned academic, »
- Inside Film Correspondent
There's a companion site for the new edition of Thomas Elsaesser and Malte Hagener's Film Theory: an Introduction Through the Senses that's chock full of some of the best recent audiovisual essays on cinema. Also in today's roundup: Jean-Luc Godard's illustrated scenario for Film Socialisme; Martin Scorsese on three of his favorite actresses, Gene Tierney, Olivia de Havilland and Teresa Wright; Kenneth Turan on Dorothy Arzner; J. Hoberman on Nadav Lapid; David Fear's interview with Julien Temple and Neil Fox's with Alex Ross Perry; Joe Swanberg and Kris Swanberg in conversation; and Adam Schartoff's interviews with James Ponsoldt (The End of the Tour), Patrick Wang (The Grief of Othersv) and Alex R. Johnson (Two Step). » - David Hudson »
Johnny Rotten grabs the microphone and lurches forward, his pimply face grinning into the camera. Next to him, Steve Jones is miming (or mocking) guitar-hero moves, while Sid Vicious hunches over his bass, surly as ever. The grainy footage carbon-dates to the tail end of 1977, right before the band was about to embark on their notorious U.S. tour and then implode. It's Christmas Day in the Northern city of Huddersfield, and will turn out to be the penultimate U.K. performance for the seminal punk band. They launch into »
Some actors are chameleons. With each performance, they transform themselves almost unrecognisably, whether it's Christian Bale's haunted, emaciated factory worker in The Machinist, Charlize Theron's haggard serial killer in Monster or Jake Gyllenhaal's sinewy boxer in the forthcoming Southpaw.
Then there's Jeff Goldblum, whose approach to acting is very different - but no less valid - than those chameleons. In each of his roles, he brings charisma, intrigue and restless energy. He's a fascinating actor to watch because, whether he's playing the lead or a supporting role, he somehow manages to project so many opposing forces in one performance: he's at once an extrovert and an outsider. Geeky and awkward yet also flirtatious and comfortable in his own skin. Intellectual yet sometimes naive. Gentle but also commanding and sometimes even scary. »
“Bloody hell, man, I’m supposed to be dead!” Following the recent London premiere of Julien Temple’s latest kaleidoscopic documentary, Wilko Johnson played a sweat-streaked gig at the 100 Club on Oxford Street, strutting up and down the small stage like a berserker, swapping gleeful looks with the great Blockheads bassist, Norman Watt-Roy, machine-gunning the audience with the staccato strumming of his black Telecaster. It was an extraordinary show, made all the more remarkable by the fact that Johnson wasn’t supposed to be there at all. Indeed, Temple’s unexpectedly celebratory film began life as a chronicle of a death foretold, doctors having given Wilko less than a year to live following a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer in 2012. Yet here he was – larger than life, stranger than fiction, »
- Mark Kermode, Observer film critic
★★★☆☆ "If it's gonna kill me, I don't want it to bore me." It's an apparently novel way to approach a diagnosis with terminal pancreatic cancer, but is precisely the one adopted by Wilko Johnson. Most famous for being the wide-eyed berserker hopping around the stage for Dr. Feelgood in the 70s, his response to the Big C 'verdict' (as he refers to it) is now the subject of a new documentary by Julien Temple. Temple's Oil City Confidential (2009) told the story of the punk-influencing band and their emergence from Canvey Island, but The Ecstasy of Wilko Johnson (2015) pays little heed to musical legacy. This is a moving portrait of a remarkable man, which is at its most effective when it just lets him speak.
- CineVue UK
"If it's going to kill me," says Wilko Johnson, influential British rock guitarist, and subject of Julien Temple's new documentary, "I don't want it to bore me." He's speaking of his shock diagnosis with terminal pancreatic cancer in his mid-60s, after which he was given ten months to live, and enjoyed, in his own words, "the most extraordinary year of my life." Onetime punk-scene filmmaker Temple (who also directed "Absolute Beginners" and "Earth Girls Are Easy" back in the '80s) has filmed Johnson, onetime punk-scene spiritual godfather, before -- in 2009's "Oil City Confidential," his documentary on Johnson's most well-known band Dr. Feelgood. And perhaps that's why Temple is content to refer to Johnson's musical talent and legacy only in passing in 'Ecstasy.' This is a film about a man, not a legend, and indeed it is the man who emerges as bigger than movie as a result. »
- Jessica Kiang
There's David Byrne's giant suit and Bob Dylan's oversize shades. Two films from Martin Scorsese but just one from Julien Temple. Punk rockers and pop superstars. We count through ten leading music documentaries below.
10. The Filth and The Fury (2000)
Julien Temple's first Sex Pistols film The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle was Malcolm McLaren's make-it-up-as-you-go-along take on things. Twenty years on the same director gave the group the right to reply, including Sid Vicious with some beyond-the-grave archive footage.
9. In Bed with Madonna (1991)
Known as Madonna: Truth or Dare in the Us, this absurdly naughty chronicle of the Queen of Pop's infamous 'Blond Ambition' tour is arguably her greatest on-screen moment. Bitchiness, bottle-fellating »
Variety’s critics reveal their choices for the publication’s annual Critics’ Choice sidebar at the Karlovy Vary Intl. Film Festival, which runs July 3-11.
Director: Nicolas Steiner
A mesmerizing plunge into the damaged psyches of five characters floating by on the margins of American society — from a couple scraping by in a Las Vegas drainage tunnel to the young woman determined to be among the first crew to colonize Mars — this remarkable graduation film serves as a perfect companion piece to the wave of post-apocalyptic stories flooding TV and megaplexes. The latest (and best) in an unlikely subgenre of not-quite-documentaries to spring up around the desolate expanse beyond California’s Inland Empire, the pic delves into a patch of the American frontier that appears even less inhabitable now than it did in the time of John Ford classics. These dried-up lakes and sun-scorched vistas offer fertile soil for the artistic-minded, »
- Variety Staff
The Karlovy Vary Intl. Film Festival will host the Czech premieres of 10 films selected by Variety critics during its upcoming 50th anniversary edition this summer, taking place July 3-11.
Variety’s Critics’ Choice program extends a long-standing partnership between Variety and the Czech Republic-based category A festival that dates back to 1998, during which time the magazine has curated a diverse range of each year’s best-reviewed European films to screen in the spa town.
This year’s selection again represents fresh voices from virtually every corner of the continent, including five first features. Half of the films in the program were either directed or co-directed by women.
Overall, the lineup represents a wide range of styles and genres. French director Thomas Salvador’s “Vincent” offers an alternative take on the superhero story, while Bulgarian duo Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov’s debut “The Lesson” represents a tense, neorealist interpretation of a true story, »
- Peter Debruge
Director Julien Temple (London – The Modern Babylon) is set to shoot drama You Really Got Me later this year in the UK, with daughter Juno Temple (Far From the Madding Crowd) also on board to play Ray’s former wife, Raza, who also sang on key tracks.
HanWay is handling international sales in Cannes with a UK deal understood to be close.
The long-time passion project of Cannes veteran Jeremy Thomas (The Last Emperor) will focus on the often turbulent relationship between the brothers who fronted the iconic 1960’s band, famous for hits You Really Got Me and Waterloo Sunset.
BBC Films have backed the film while co-producers in Belgium are [link »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Andreas Wiseman)
Listing the Coen Brothers, Spike Jonze, and Paul Thomas Anderson as her Bucket List of directors with whom to work, Juno Temple’s film choices are best described as eclectic. The daughter of rock and roll filmmaker Julien Temple, Juno had a creative, rebellious spirit instilled in her at an early age, and her career has reflected that greatly.
Starring opposite Matthew McConaughey in Killer Joe and Daniel Radcliffe in Horns, she’s never been one to back away from darker roles. On the other hand, she’s also completely willing to play dress-up every once and a while. You may remember her as a fairy in Maleficent or as Queen Anne, dripping in pearls and lace, in Paul W. S. Anderson’s The Three Musketeers.
- Sasha James
Chicago – In receiving the official Badasss Award at the 2015 Chicago International Movies & Music Fest (CIMMFest), legendary rock documentary maker Julien Temple simply said, “Badass is not a phrase we use in England. I’ve never been called a badass, I prefer ‘enfant terriblé,’ with a hope toward ‘monstre sacré.’”
And so it goes with one of the most prolific and influential rock documentarians in cinema history, with the whole evolution of the music form contained in his associations with The Kinks, the Clash (through Joe Strummer), the Rolling Stones and the Sex Pistols. What began as a student obsession with the discovery of the Sex Pistols in the 1970s, fueled a lifelong pursuit of rock documentary truth, feature film adventure and music video stylings. Julien Temple has provided the sights and the sounds.
Photo credit: Patrick McDonald for HollywoodChicago. »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
Chicago – CIMMfest, the Chicago International Movies and Music Festival, has become one of the fastest growing and buzzworthy Chicago film festivals in recent years. Combining film, tribute events and live performances – and centered in and around the neighborhood of Wicker Park from April 16th through the 19th, 2015, – CIMMfest is not so much a festival as a organic happening.
The 2015 edition of CIMMfest is bigger, bolder and lights up with star power. Besides some of the highlights listed below, there is a jam-packed variety of films, music and events from April 16th through the 19th. For more information, including purchasing passes, click here.
CIMMfest Highlights: The Movies…
Photo credit: CIMMfest
Don’t Think I’ve Forgotten: Cambodia’s Lost Rock ‘n’ Roll
Thursday, April 16th, 7pm, The Logan Theater, 2546 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago
During the Vietnam War, Cambodian musicians crafted a sound from the various rock music styles sweeping America, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
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