Paris, je t'aime (2006) - News Poster

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Pattinson Voted Hottest Male Movie Vampire

  • WENN
British heartthrob Robert Pattinson has been named the hottest male movie vampire of all time, trumping big screen bloodsuckers Brad Pitt, Antonio Banderas and Tom Cruise.

The 22-year-old star is poised to set teenage girls' hearts a flutter in the soon-to-be-released adaptation of hit novel Twilight.

And Pattinson is already movie fans' favourite vampire - before he has even sunk his teeth in a victim on the big screen.

He has topped a Moviefone poll to find the best batty biter.

From Dusk Til Dawn star Salma Hayek topped the female poll, ahead of Kate Beckinsale, who slipped on fangs for the Underworld movies.

The top 10s are as follows:

Male Vampires

1.Robert Pattinson - Twilight

2. Brad Pitt - Interview with the Vampire

3. Cam Gigandet - Twilight

4. Antonio Banderas - Interview with the Vampire

5. Stuart Townsend - Queen of the Damned

6. Jason Patric - Lost Boys

7. Gerard Butler - Dracula 2000

8. Tom Cruise - Interview with the Vampire

9. Dominic Purcell - Town Creek

10. Kiefer Sutherland - The Lost Boys

Female vampires

1. Salma Hayek - From Dusk Til Dawn

2. Kate Beckinsale - Underworld

3. Angie Everhart - Bordello of Blood

4. Aaliyah - Queen of the Damned

5. Monica Bellucci - Bram Stoker's Dracula

6. Nikki Reed - Twilight

7. Olga Kurylenko - "Quartier de la Madeleine" in Paris, I Love You

8. Sharon Tate - The Fearless Vampire Killers

9. Kristanna Loken - Bloodrayne

10. Traci Lords - Blade

Eastern European Distributors at the San Sebastian Film Festival

The European Film Promotion (EFP) and the San Sebastian International Film Festival (September 18-27) launched a new promotion initiative entitled "European Distributors: Up Next".

Ten independent distributors from Central and Eastern Europe attending the festival discussed the possibilities of theatrical distribution on a European level. Since the majority of European producers do not cross national borders, the meetings in San Sebastian were aimed to create possible platform and networking opportunities to improve the circulation of European productions.

• From Slovenia, Natasa Bucar, project manager of the cultural center Cankarjev Dom, a public institution that organizes many events promoting film, including the Ljubljana International Film Festival has been in art film distribution for the last 15 years. They distribute five to six titles every year to fill the gap in theatrical distribution of European high-profile films in Slovenia. Priority is given to established and not always well-known European and other international filmmakers. Their last distributed titles were Neil Jordan’s ‘Breakfast on Pluto’, Tony Gatlif’s ‘Transylvania’, Bent Hamer’s ‘Factotum’, Dagur Kari’s ‘Dark Horse’, Corneliu Porumboiu’s ‘12:08 East of Bucharest’, Roy Andersson’s ‘You, the Living’, Pascale Ferran’s ‘Lady Chatterley’, Marjane Satrapi’s ‘Persepolis’ and Shane Meadows’ ‘This Is England’.

Besides Cankarjev Dom, there are only four arthouse cinemas in Slovenia. They need more along with arthouse cinema networks to enable better film promotion. In Slovenia, like everywhere in Europe, the number of cinema viewers has fallen drastically. Audiences focus on fewer films, the top 20 films take up to almost 50% of the market in Slovenia.

• From Hungary, Rita Linda Potyondi of Cirko Film - Másképp Foundation, the only Hungarian distributor to operate as a non-profit-foundation, they also own one theater in Budapest. Working on a showstring budget, they are guided by personal tastes and focus on international and particularly European ‘difficult’ auteur films with targeted or limited audiences, especially those that explore themes related to discriminated groups: homosexuals, handicapped people, ethnic or religious minorities and victims of family abuse. Their last releases include films by Robert Guédiguian, Bruno Dumont, Fernando Leon de Aranoa, Baltasar Kormakur, Alain Corneau, Bruno Podalydès, Bertrand Bonello, Claire Denis, Ferzan Ozpetek, Catalin Mitulescu and Oskar Roehler. A recent surprise success was Anders Thomas Jensen’s ‘Adam's Apples’ which became a sort of cult film. They also did well with Palme d’Or-winner ‘4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days’, and ‘Persepolis’, Susanne Bier’s ‘After the Wedding, ‘Red Road’, ‘My Brother Is An Only Child’, ‘A Soap’, ‘Our Daily Bread’. Upcoming are the Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne's ‘Lorna’s Silence’, Gustave de Kervern and Benoit Belepine’s ‘Louise Michel’, Nic Balthazar’s ‘Ben X’, Simon Staho’s ‘Heaven’s Heart’, Ole Christian Madsen’s ‘Kira’s Reason’, Josef Fares’ ‘Leo’, Anders Thomas Jensen’s ‘The Green Butchers’ and ‘Flickering Lights’, and Ole Bornedal’s ‘Just Another Love Story’.

• Czech distributor Artcam’s Managing Director Premysl Martinek knows he is fighting an uphill battle. In 2007 combined total admissions for Artcam's films were under 50,000 — 0.4 percent of the national total. By comparison, leading distributor Falcon drew more than 4,000,000 viewers with its films, nearly a third of the market. However Martinek is convinced there is room in the market for small distributors and is interested in the shared challenges, from the opportunities offered by digital distribution and video-on-demand to how to negotiate with producers on minimum guarantees. The main problem is cultivating an audience. “It's very different from in Holland or Germany, where there are audiences for arthouse films,” he says.

Most of Artcam's target market is in Prague, home to roughly 1,000,000 people where European film is largely restricted to a handful of single-screen theatres, while the city's 14 multiplexes focus primarily on Hollywood imports and successful local films.

Artcam has distributed some of the most widely heralded European films of recent years, including Ole Madsen's drama ‘Prague’, ‘Persepolis’ and ‘The Diving Bell and the Butterfly’. The international success of such films has attracted the attention of larger distributors who are now crowding the arena. This year in Cannes when they tried to acquire ‘Waltz with Bashir’, there was greater competition. Martinek says arthouse is an important part of any film culture, and lack of access to European films is hurting Czech cinema because if they lack exposure to the cinema of other countries, from new ways of narration, they cannot develop their own cinema. The Czech Ministry of Education has introduced media studies to secondary school curricula to show young people that film is “not just fun and popcorn. It's also art.”

• Polish distribution company Gutek’s Jakub Duszyński, artistic director and head of programming (along with Roman Gutek) at the Muranow movie theater also programs for the different festivals held at the theatre and for Poland’s largest film event, the Era New Horizons Film Festival in Wroclaw. A lawyer by training and a fan of Asian genre films, Duszynski has also set up a distribution company (Blink) specializing in this type of film.

Gutek Film has always been a launching pad for auteur films and has released films by Lars Von Trier, Pedro Almodóvar, Jim Jarmush and Wong Kar-Wai. Every year, they distribute two or three films not aimed solely at auteur film enthusiasts, but also at multiplex audiences. Among such titles are Tom Tykwer’s ‘Perfume: The Story of a Murderer’ and ‘Control’. Coming up are Polish features including Jerzy Skolimowski’s ‘Four Nights With Anna’, Piotr Lazarkiewicz’s ‘0_1_0’ and Katarzyna Adamik’s ‘Boisko bezdomnych’. They distribute almost exclusively European films. The box office is certainly dominated by US films, but by only a few titles which often have, interestingly, something European about them, for example they may be inspired by European literature.

• Slovakia’s Michal Drobny is marketing manager for Slovak distributor Continental Film. Slovakia sees 2,500,000 to 3,000,000 admissions in a year. A successful film for Continental is 10,000 to 15,000 admissions, as compared to one of the Harry Potter films which will have 200,000 admissions.

Continental releases 30 to 40 films a year and, thanks largely to its partnership with Warner Bros, enjoys a market share of 20%–30%. Continental also serve as Slovak distribution partners for Hollywood Classic Entertainment, which often buys rights to European and arthouse titles for several Eastern European territories at once. Continental acquires other titles through direct negotiation with the producers, usually from the Czech Republic. Drobny seldom attends festivals other than Berlin. This year is his first visit to San Sebastian.

Margins are tight for Continental, which is the second or third largest distributor in Slovakia. Continental is also a 30% shareholder in Slovak multiplex chain Cinemax, which owns nine cinemas countrywide. Continental also operated Bratislava's only arthouse cinema until it was turned into a congress hall.

Continental counts on public money for a small portion of its operating budget. The Slovak Ministry of Culture gives support up to a maximum of SKK 160,000 (€5,500) for the distribution of European films which covers the cost of two or three prints. Continental also receives funding through the MEDIA automatic support scheme, typically receiving 40 to 60 cents per admission for European films.

Drobny says this public support is welcome but it's seldom enough to make a real difference to distributors. “A print for a US title costs $300 [€210]. For a European title, the cost is $1,000–1500 [€700–1,000] for the print, plus I still need to pay for the all the marketing materials and the cost of subtitles,” he says. “We can't be surprised that American films are everywhere.”

Not surprisingly few European films secure distribution in Slovakia. Cinemax promotes European and arthouse film through its Artmax program and screens independent films once a week, sometimes for free. Current titles in the selection include ‘Good Bye, Lenin!’, ‘The Secret Life of Words’, ‘The Science of Sleep’, ‘Volver’ and ‘Angel’. In cooperation with the Embassy of Spain, Continental and Cinemax are creating a Spanish Days celebration of Spanish cinema at Cinemax locations in November.

Drobny has hopes that digital cinema will help small distributors, but believes it will be five to ten years before the major studios settle on a common format. Even then, the costs of converting screens will be challenging for the private sector. “To install one 2K digital system costs SKK 3m–4m [€100,000–132,000] and we have 37 screens, so it's a lot of money,” he says. “We'd like to invest but it will take a long time to see a return on that investment.”

• From Romania, Transilvania Film, founded by Tudor Giurgiu and currently run by Stefan Bradea is one of the successful pioneers of arthouse film distribution in Romania. At first they distributed mainly British, German and Scandinavian features but gradually turned to quality Romanian films, genre pictures, even some mainstream American movies. Their eclectic selection is targeted to the highly educated public, basically university graduates under 35. Their latest premiere was ‘Non pensarci’ by Gianni Zanasi, an Italian comedy. Coming up are Gus Van Sant’s ‘Paranoid Park’ and a few Romanian films: Horatiu Malaele’s ‘Silent Wedding’, Adrian Sitaru’s ‘Hooked’ and Anca Damian’s debut, ‘Crossing Dates’. Their most profitable film was Tudor Giurgiu’s ‘Love Sick’ with 20,800 admissions and a box office gross of over €50,000. Other successful features were Neil Burger’s ‘The Illusionist’, with 11,500 admissions, and ‘Paris Je T’Aime’, with 9,715 admissions.

Film distribution business in Romania is rather unstable. There are eight active distributors bringing 150-160 features every year to 40-50 screens around the country. The number of distributors is growing and it is becoming a overserved field.

The Romanian mainstream public has little interest in European arthouse film and there are very few available screens, no arthouse cinemas and a poor DVD and TV arthouse market. And there is competition among distributors.

Stefan Kitanov is the founder of the most important annual film event in Bulgaria, the Sofia International Film Festival. In 2001 he founded ART FEST Ltd., the company behind Sofia IFF. The same company is one of the key European film distributors in Bulgaria. ART FEST Ltd. has three components: production, distribution and exhibition.

Most recent releases include Fatih Akin’s ‘The Edge of Heaven’, ‘The Palermo Shooting ‘by Wim Wenders and ‘Delta’ by Kornel Mundruczo. The most successful releases were Francois Ozon’s ‘Swimming Pool’ and ‘Crossing the Bridge’ by Fatih Akin with 8,000 to 10,000 admissions.

Such a distribution business is not profitable. Festival audiences like European films but the general audience likes Hollywood films. Festival audiences don’t go to regular cinemas. The general audience goes to regular cinemas, therefore European films don’t go regularly to mainstream cinemas. There need to be events around the distribution of European films so that they be seen, such as a traveling package going to different towns, whether it is with 35mm or video screenings. There are less than 30 towns in Bulgaria with cinemas.

• From Estonia, Katrin Rajaare of Tallinnfilm, a state-owned company that used to produce the majority of Estonian films during the Soviet era has stopped production and sold its studio and now focuses on restoration of its archives. In 2004, Tallinnfilm began operating as an arthouse cinema and a year later started a distribution operation to ensure continuous programming for the cinema. Tallinnfilm acquires the rights to 12-16 films a year, mostly European films, with some titles from Asia and the US. As a state-owned company, Tallinnfilm buys mostly Estonian theatrical rights only. It is the second largest distribution company in Estonia, with a market share of 2.6%. In the Baltic countries, all rights are acquired for smaller films and shared with Lithuania’s Skalvija and Latvia’s Kino Riga. Their biggest hit in 2007 was ‘La Vie en Rose’ with 9,606 paid admissions. This film was number 43 in the 2007 national box office chart. Only US and Estonian films were at the top of the chart. Recent acquisitions include ‘Happy-Go-Lucky’ and ‘Vicky Christina Barcelona’ to be released around Christmas and the beginning of 2009.

There is a small, steady market for arthouse titles in the capital city of Tallinn, but the recent opening of a five-screen miniplex in the second city, Tartu (96,000 inhabitants), has brought hope from the outskirts as well. There are very few towns where you can screen European films, although the cinemas have received public support for technical equipment and should screen arthouse titles, but the reality is that you can’t force cinemas to screen certain films that won’t bring in audiences.

• From Lithuania Skalvija, an exhibitor since 1962 under the name of Planeta became the only arthouse in Lithuania in 1992. It has only one screen and 88 seats and is subsidized by the Vilnius Municipality. Located in the city center; it promotes quality cinema and pays special attention to young audiences and education. Its market share as an exhibitor is 1.11%. Two major multiplex theatres share 70 % of the entire Lithuanian exhibition market. Greta Akcijonaite heads its recent arthouse film distribution activity. Over the last two years they have released 10 films theatrically, and another 5 have been acquired for Lithuania and/or all the Baltic States. As a very small and specialized distributor, Skalvija has a market share of 0.64%. Most recent releases were the Danish film ‘Adam's Apples’, with almost 8,000 admissions and the Spanish film ‘Dark Blue Almost Black’ with over 6000 admissions. Recent acquisitions include Sam Garbarski’s ‘Irina Palm’ (Belgium/UK), Kornel Mundruczo’s ‘Delta’ (Hungary), the Palme d’Or winner ‘The Class’ (France) by Laurent Cantet, Thomas Clay’s ‘Soy Cowboy’ (Thailand/UK), Ruben Östlund’s’ Involuntary’ (Sweden), and Ilmar Raag’s ‘The Class’ (Estonia).

The market share of the European films released theatrically was 25% in 2007 although the share of admissions to European films was only 11%. There is definitely a lack of venues for screening European and quality films.

• Latvia’s Oskars Killo heads Acme Film Sia the leading independent film distributor in Latvia, established in 2004 and owned by Acme, a Lithuanian based company. The rights for Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are bought by the mother company in Lithuania. In 2007, Acme Film had 62 theatrical releases and a 25% market share. In 2008, the number of films released will be the same, but the revenue is expected to be higher. In 2008, Acme Film has had such European successes as French films ‘99 Francs’ and ‘Asterix at the Olympic Games’, and Spain’s ‘The Orphanage’. The last European hit was ‘2 Days in Paris’, released on one print on July 4, 2008 and still in release with 12,500 admissions thus far. ‘Cash’ was released on one print on August 1 and has 8,500 admissions so far. The results for ‘2 Days in Paris’ and ‘Cash’ are comparable to recent US releases in Latvia such as ‘The X-Files 2’, and ‘Disaster Movie’. Recent European acquisitions include ‘Happy-Go-Lucky’, ‘Paris’, ‘JCVD’, ‘The Duchess’, ‘Vicky Christina Barcelona’, ‘Vinyan’, ‘Ne te retourne pas’ among others.

In 2007, European films had a 18.3% market share, US films a 66% market share, the rest of the world 10.1% and national films a 5.5% market share.

Shia LaBeouf, Julie Christie join 'Love'

Shia LaBeouf, Julie Christie join 'Love'
Shia LaBeouf, Julie Christie and John Hurt are starring in the late Anthony Minghella-scripted segment of New York, I Love You, an anthology of 12 short films set in each of the city's five boroughs.

Love is being helmed by a coterie of directors, including Natalie Portman, who is making her writing and directing debut.

Those cast in the anthology film include Hayden Christensen, Rachel Bilson, Chris Cooper, Anton Yelchin, Drea de Matteo, Ethan Hawke and Kevin Bacon.

Among those directing are such notables as Allen Hughes, Brett Ratner and Scarlett Johansson. Johansson's entry follows the journey of a lonely man and his vision of the city.

The movie follows on the heels of the similarly formatted Paris, je t'aime, which dealt with love encounters in the City of Lights.

The next city to get the anthology treatment, under what is being called the Cities of Love franchise, is Shanghai, followed by a location in South America and then Africa.

LaBeouf and Christie's segment, written by the late Minghella and directed by Shekhar Kapur, who stepped in after the director died, centers on a woman who checks into a hotel that is in between worlds.

Oscar winner Anthony Minghella dies

Writer-director Anthony Minghella, who died early Tuesday in London of an apparent brain hemorrhage, leaves behind a legacy of acclaimed work and a wide range of projects.

At 54, the British filmmaker known for his adaptations of literary material was, in many respects, in the prime of his career.

Minghella and the Weinstein Co. recently concluded a deal with HBO and the BBC to air the adaptation of the literary franchise The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency as a movie and 13-episode television series.

The filmmaker also was attached to write and direct the adaptation of Liz Jensen's France-based psychological thriller The Ninth Life of Louis Drax, in development at the Weinstein Co., and had served as a producer on the recently wrapped The Reader, the adaptation of the Oprah Winfrey-blessed German novel from the Weinstein Co. and Scott Rudin that's set for release in the fall.

Minghella had written but not yet cast or shot his segment of New York, I Love You, the follow-up to the city-centric set of romantic vignettes Paris, je t'aime that was set to shoot in Upper Manhattan in April. A rep for the film said the producers were waiting for Minghella's family to respond about how they wanted to proceed with the segment but indicated that they likely would carry on with the segment with another director.

"We are shocked and deeply saddened by the loss of Anthony Minghella," the producers said. "His highly visionary work will continue to live on through the segment he wrote for New York,' I Love You.' "

They also said that they would dedicate the film to Minghella.

The BBC plans to air the two-hour pilot of Detective -- which, like the series, Minghella created and wrote with feature scribe Richard Curtis -- next week. HBO said it still plans to air the movie as a kickoff to the series next year.

New blood: Kurylenko set as lead Bond girl

New blood: Kurylenko set as lead Bond girl
Ukrainian actress Olga Kurylenko has landed the lead Bond girl role in the next 007 adventure, playing the alluring Camille, producers said Monday.

The actress and top European model recently co-starred with Timothy Olyphant in Hitman and opposite Elijah Wood in Paris, je t'aime.

The 22nd Bond adventure, directed by Marc Forster, started principal photography in London under the working title Bond 22, with Daniel Craig reprising the role of Agent 007.

Also rejoining the cast are Judi Dench as M, Jeffrey Wright as Felix Leiter and Giancarlo Giannini as Mathis. British newcomer Gemma Arterton will play MI6 Agent Fields.

Writing duo Neal Purvis & Robert Wade and and Sony will share distribution rights worldwide, with Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Releasing International distributing the films to theaters worldwide Nov. 7.

Also joining the cast is French actor Mathieu Amalric, who recently starred in The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. For Bond 22, Amalric plays Dominic Greene, a leading member of the villainous organization introduced in the previous Bond film, Casino Royale.

First Look president Vitale exiting

First Look president Vitale exiting
NEW YORK -- Ruth Vitale is leaving her post as president of First Look Studios, effective April 30. Her departure marks the first earthquake at the indie studio since First Look Pictures CEO Henry Winterstern's abrupt departure March 5.

"(First Look founding investor) Prentice Capital has been nothing but wonderful," Vitale said in an interview Wednesday. She will oversee the April 13 wide release of the animated Cartoon Network series adaptation "Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters" and consult on First Look theatrical releases, including Paris je t'aime, through year's end.

Vitale said she has no other plans after her departure but described her resignation as a "mutual decision." First Look was close to finalizing a deal for what would have been this year's first South by Southwest Film Festival theatrical film acquisition, David Mackenzie's British drama Hallam Foe, before it fell through.

"It saddens me, but moving on is the best for everyone in light of First Look's decision to conduct its theatrical business on a smaller scale," Vitale said. "I leave behind a strong team and take pride in the projects that I helped bring to First Look."

The move caught some at the company by surprise, even though there was uncertainty and a lack of clarity about the company's direction in the wake of Winterstern's departure.

San Sebastian fest announces Zabaltegi films

San Sebastian fest announces Zabaltegi films
MADRID -- Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's Babel, the documentary Neil Young: Heart of Gold and Paris, je t'aime are among the nine films selected for the San Sebastian International Film Festival's Zabaltegi section, organizers said Tuesday. One of the most popular sections at San Sebastian, Zabaltegi is designed to give festivalgoers a chance to catch up on films they may have missed at previous festivals. Other titles this year include Sundance favorite Little Miss Sunshine, Berlin title Vitus and Cannes entries The Court from Abderrahmane Sissako and Buenos Aires, 1977 from Israel Adrian Caetano. Manoel de Oliveira's Belle toujours, an homage to Luis Bunuel and Jean-Claude Carriere, and Alfonso Cuaron's Children of Men will screen in Venice prior to San Sebastian, qualifying them for the category as well.

Senator bounces back

Senator bounces back
CANNES -- Germany's Senator Film may have recently emerged from insolvency protection, but the Berlin-based distributor-producer was among the most active buyers at Cannes this year, snatching several high-profile indie titles for Europe's largest territory. Senator closed on the Michel Gondry comedy Be Kind, Rewind starring Jack Black, Rian Johnson's teenage noir Brick and the Richard Shepard-directed adventure comedy Spring Break in Bosnia, which stars Richard Gere and Terrence Howard. The group also picked up a couple of festival titles, including the Un Certain Regard opener Paris je t'aime and Richard Linklater's In Competition entry Fast Food Nation.

Senator bounces back

Senator bounces back
CANNES -- Germany's Senator Film may have recently emerged from insolvency protection, but the Berlin-based distributor-producer was among the most active buyers at Cannes this year, snatching several high-profile indie titles for Europe's largest territory. Senator closed on the Michel Gondry comedy Be Kind, Rewind starring Jack Black, Rian Johnson's teenage noir Brick and the Richard Shepard-directed adventure comedy Spring Break in Bosnia, which stars Richard Gere and Terrence Howard. The group also picked up a couple of festival titles, including the Un Certain Regard opener Paris je t'aime and Richard Linklater's In Competition entry Fast Food Nation.

Paris, I Love You (Paris, Je t'Aime)

Paris, I Love You (Paris, Je t'Aime)
Being in Paris is to be inside a work of art, and it is no surprise that in the charming collection of vignettes that make up Paris je t'aime, the art is love. This is a Paris where Oscar Wilde can reappear beside his grave at Pere Lachaise to give squabbling lovers a sense of humor. A vampire may pounce on an unsuspecting backpacker in the Madeleine. A cowboy on horseback can bring a grieving mother back to her family. A paramedic may fall in love with her bleeding patient.

Love in all its weird and wonderful forms is the subject of 18 short films made by an assortment of international directors who bring individual vision to a collective love letter to the French capital. Most of the directors have written their own pieces, and they range from whimsical to romantic, to dramatic and tragic.

With many familiar faces including Juliette Binoche, Fanny Ardant, Natalie Portman, Nick Nolte, Steve Buscemi, Bob Hoskins and Gena Rowlands, the film is necessarily uneven but has an overall winning charm and can expect a warm reception in art houses around the world.

Buscemi and Coen brothers completists will not want to miss their hilarious tale of an American tourist on the Metro stop at the Tuileries learning firsthand how accurate his guidebook is. Forget The Da Vinci Code -- anyone who sees this film will never look at Mona Lisa's smile again without thinking of the matchless Buscemi.

An offbeat sense of humor is established from the opening story, subtitled Montmartre, in which a frustrated young man (writer-director Bruno Podalydes) struggles to find a parking spot only to spend the time parked complaining aloud about why he can't find a girlfriend.

Then a lovely young woman (Florence Muller) faints beside his car. It's Paris.

Writer-director Gurinder Chadha spends a few minutes showing how a young man (Cyril Descours) can learn more from a modest hijab-wearing young woman (Leila Bekhti) than from his leering buddies.

Isabel Coixet manages to find great humor in a story of a failed love affair given new life after one of the lovers (Miranda Richardson) is diagnosed with terminal leukemia, while Oliver Schmitz's new paramedic (Aissa Maiga) learns how fleeting love can be while treating a stab victim (Seydou Boro).

Several sequences begin with misdirection so that Nolte's May-December romance turns out to be not that at all, while Hoskins and Ardant's strip club encounter involves more than a little planned artifice. Tom Tykwer's tale of an actress (Portman) trying to break off her affair with a blind linguist (Melchior Besion) also holds a surprise. Sylvain Chomet's item involving mimes is pleasingly self-mocking, and Alexander Payne's narrative of a Denver matron (Margo Martindale) visiting the city to improve her halting French begins in sarcasm and ends in sympathy.

Binoche grieves for her dead son in Nobuhiro Suwa's parable about a cowboy (Willem Defoe) who rides the midnight streets of Paris to ease her pain. Director Barbet Schroeder has fun along with Li Xin in a wacky musical fantasy by Christopher Doyle. Wes Craven naturally gravitates to a graveyard for his oddball contribution involving Wilde.

The cinematography is varied and wonderful. Pierre Adenot's music fits the bill, and there's a great waltz at the end with English adaptation by Oscar-winning lyricist Will Jennings.

PARIS JE T'AIME

Victoires International in association with Arrival Cinema

Credits:

Directors: Bruno Podalydes

Gurinder Chadha, Gus Van Sant, Joel and Ethan Coen, Walter Salles & Daniela Thomas, Christopher Doyle, Isabel Coixet, Nobuhiro Suwa, Sylvain Chomet, Alfonso Cuaron, Olivier Assayas, Oliver Schmitz, Richard LaGravenese, Vincenzo Natali, Wes Craven, Tom Tykwer, Frederic Auburtin & Gerard Depardieu, Alexander Payne

Producers: Claudie Ossard & Emmanuel Benbihy

Co-producer: Burkhard Von Schenk

Executive producers: Chris Bolzli, Gilles Caussade, Sam Englebardt, Ara Katz, Chad Troutwine, Frank Moss, Rafi Chaudry

Original idea: Tristan Carne

Concept: Emmanuel Benbihy

Production designer: Bettina von den Steinen

Editing supervisors: Simon Jacquet, Frederic Auburtin

Original music: Pierre Adenot

No MPAA rating

Running time -- 120 minutes

'Paris' not feeling the love

'Paris' not feeling the love
CANNES -- Paris, je t'aime (Paris, I Love You) may well be a film about amour, but there is little love lost between the producers of the portmanteau picture, which has its gala screening tonight for the opening of Un Certain Regard. The film is the subject of a legal tussle, with the project's initial producer, Emmanuel Benbihy, unhappy that two of a planned 20 segments were cut from the film by Claudie Ossard, who boarded the floundering project two years ago as a white-knight producer. The long-in-the-works movie, which has "an overall winning charm," according to a review in The Hollywood Reporter, features a series of vignettes shot around the French capital from an impressive array of international filmmaking talent. But two of these directors, Raphael Nadjari and Christoffer Boe, ended up on the cutting-room floor after Ossard sidelined Benbihy from the final montage. She also excised linking sequences he had shot.

'Paris' not feeling the love

'Paris' not feeling the love
CANNES -- Paris, je t'aime (Paris, I Love You) may well be a film about amour, but there is little love lost between the producers of the portmanteau picture, which has its gala screening tonight for the opening of Un Certain Regard. The film is the subject of a legal tussle, with the project's initial producer, Emmanuel Benbihy, unhappy that two of a planned 20 segments were cut from the film by Claudie Ossard, who boarded the floundering project two years ago as a white-knight producer. The long-in-the-works movie, which has "an overall winning charm," according to a review in The Hollywood Reporter, features a series of vignettes shot around the French capital from an impressive array of international filmmaking talent. But two of these directors, Raphael Nadjari and Christoffer Boe, ended up on the cutting-room floor after Ossard sidelined Benbihy from the final montage. She also excised linking sequences he had shot.

French film lab union calls off strike

French film lab union calls off strike
PARIS -- A threat to the delivery of prints at the Festival de Cannes was averted late Thursday when unions at France's biggest film laboratories called off a two-day old strike over feared job cuts. Workers at I Laboratoires outside Paris downed tools Tuesday in protest at expected job cuts, and the stoppage was renewed Thursday. Eclair, which employs close to 400 people, recently announced a 50% drop in its revenue from 35mm negative processing for the first quarter, prompting management to examine restructuring the workforce through early retirement and voluntary redundancies. Management met with staff reps Thursday evening and gave guarantees that there will be no forced redundancies. "We restart work tomorrow," said Sylvain Szuscany, representative of the CGT union. No one from management was available for comment at press time. Eclair is processing about a dozen films due to unspool at Cannes, mainly French titles including the Competition films Selon Charlie and Quand j'etais chanteur, the closing-night film Transylvania and the opening film for sidebar Un Certain Regard, Paris, je t'aime.

'Paris' in the spring: Debut set for Cannes

'Paris' in the spring: Debut set for Cannes
PARIS -- Paris, je t'aime (Paris, I Love You), a collection of 20 love stories set in the French capital and directed by a score of internationally acclaimed filmmakers, will open the Festival de Cannes sidebar Un Certain Regard, organizers said Tuesday. The movie has been in production for several years as the various directors successively came on board, but the pace of shooting accelerated last year after producer Claudie Ossard (Amelie) joined the project's originator, Emmanuel Benbihy. The film is told in five-minute segments each focusing on one of Paris' 20 administrative districts, or "arrondissements," then joined by transition elements.

See also

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