Le silence de Lorna (2008) - News Poster

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Cannes: Marion Cotillard Delivers for the Dardennes in 'Two Days, One Night'

Cannes: Marion Cotillard Delivers for the Dardennes in 'Two Days, One Night'
The Belgian filmmakers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne have never made a bad movie. These painstaking writer-directors carefully prepare, rehearse for three weeks before filming, and always deliver something compelling and watchable. And the Cannes juries have responded enthusiastically over the years, rewarding them Palme d'Or awards for their first competition entry "Rosetta" in 1999 and "L'Enfant" in 2005, Best Screenplay for "The Silence of Lorna (2008) and the Grand Prix for "The Kid with the Bike" (2011). This year, the most likely win for "Two Days, One Night" is Best Actress for Marion Cotillard, by far the biggest star to join a Dardennes film.  The Dardennes first approached Cotillard when they were involved in producing Jacques Audiard's "Rust and Bone." As soon as they met her they knew they wanted to work with her, they said in Cannes. The feeling was mutual. A longtime admirer of the Dardennes, Cotillard signed on first for
See full article at Thompson on Hollywood »

Hidden gems of 2012: DVDs

Mark Kermode picks the year's best DVD releases that went largely unnoticed – but are too good to miss

Ping Pong

(Hugh Hartford, 2012, Britdoc Films, E)

A documentary about octogenarian (and upward) table tennis may not sound like the most obvious formula for life-affirming thrills, but this splendid account of the Oap "paddles of fire" circuit is as nail-biting as any sports event this year. Most impressively, the age of the participants (some in triple figures) quickly becomes an irrelevance as their competitive personalities take over to dominate the drama. There's nothing quaint or genteel about this battle of wits from players whose faculties, both physical and mental, have clearly been enhanced by the beautiful game.

The Dardennes Collection

(Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne, 2012, Artificial Eye, 15)

The work of these most admirably humanist directors is gathered together in a six-disc collection which cements the Dardennes' reputation as guardians of the beating heart of cinema.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

The HeyUGuys DVD/Blu-Ray Round-Up – 23rd July

Last week saw the release of Mark Wahlberg-starrer Contraband to our shelves, and this week brings with it a rather different line-up, with the lovely Marilyn Monroe getting the HD treatment, alongside Robert Pattinson amongst highly impressive company in Bel Ami, and the anticipated Shanghai, with John Cusack leading a fantastic cast.

With that in mind,

My picks of the week:

Mikael Håfström’s Shanghai.

And the Blu-ray release of Marilyn Monroe’s Forever Marilyn.

Shanghai Iframe Embed for Youtube

DVD and Blu-ray

Mikael Håfström’s Shanghai was released back in the summer of 2010 across parts of Asia, and has had various releases across the world since then, but the two markets it hasn’t yet been released in are the UK and the Us.

John Cusack, Gong Li, Chow Yun-Fat, Ken Watanabe, David Morse, Franka Potente, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan star in one of the most promising casts of recent years,
See full article at HeyUGuys »

Ooh, my head: is the old movie 'whack on the head' trick making a comeback?

For years, TV made me think you could knock someone out cold and they'd soon recover. Now the Dardenne brothers' new film, The Kid with a Bike, has revived that dramatic tic

Next week the Dardenne brothers, Jean-Pierre and Luc, are opening their latest film in the UK: Le Gamin au Vélo, or The Kid with a Bike. A young boy in care makes a desperate attempt to find his dad, and the beloved bike he is sure must still be in the father's possession. These film-makers, double Palme d'Or winners at Cannes for Rosetta (1999) and The Child (2005), have created some classic social realist dramas in the past, and The Kid with a Bike is a winningly forthright, heartfelt movie that I reviewed on its Cannes festival premiere last year and will return to again next Friday.

But here I feel I have to notice that once again, the Dardennes
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Ooh, my head: is the old movie 'whack on the head' trick making a comeback?

For years, TV made me think you could knock someone out cold and they'd soon recover. Now the Dardenne brothers' new film, The Kid with a Bike, has revived that dramatic tic

Next week the Dardenne brothers, Jean-Pierre and Luc, are opening their latest film in the UK: Le Gamin au Vélo, or The Kid with a Bike. A young boy in care makes a desperate attempt to find his dad, and the beloved bike he is sure must still be in the father's possession. These film-makers, double Palme d'Or winners at Cannes for Rosetta (1999) and The Child (2005), have created some classic social realist dramas in the past, and The Kid with a Bike is a winningly forthright, heartfelt movie that I reviewed on its Cannes festival premiere last year and will return to again next Friday.

But here I feel I have to notice that once again, the Dardennes
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Cannes 2011. Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne's "The Kid with the Bike"

Updated through 5/19.

"As movie titles go, The Kid with a Bike could hardly be more direct and explicative in its unadorned simplicity," writes David Rooney in the Hollywood Reporter. "Which is a perfect encapsulation of any film by the resolutely unshowy maestros of humanistic portraiture, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. Back at the festival that has already crowned them with two Palmes d'Or (for Rosetta in 1999 and The Child in 2005), the Belgian siblings are again at the peak of their powers in this impeccably observed drama."

Glenn Heath Jr at the House Next Door: "An enduring drive propels 11-year-old Cyril (Thomas Dorset) to ignore the writing on the wall that his young father, Guy (Jérémie Renier), has indefinitely left him to the care of a state-run facility. The opening sequence introduces Cyril's durability and directionality, as the boy escapes and heads toward his now abandoned apartment looking for his father and beloved bike.
See full article at MUBI »

Cannes 2011 review: Le Gamin au Vélo/Polisse

Two-time Palme d'Or winners the Dardenne brothers cast their first star, while a Parisian police thriller could be the worst film in competition

The weekend saw the latest film from two of the festival's heaviest hitters: Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, who have won the Palme d'Or twice (for Rosetta in 1999 and L'Enfant in 2005); their new film Le Gamin au Vélo, or The Kid With a Bike, is in competition. Unusually for the Dardennes, this one features a star in the traditional glossy-glam sense: Cécile de France. Still, there's no mistaking it for anyone else's film: a social-realist drama set in the suburban-rural hinterland of the directors' native Belgium, on the theme of parent and child, and father and son, with repertory casting of the Dardennes' favourite players: Jérémie Renier and a brief, almost totemic appearance from Olivier Gourmet.

The Kid With a Bike restates the Dardennes' style so emphatically it
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

On the Politics of Invisibility: A Discussion of Nuri Ceylan’s ‘Three Monkeys’ and the Dardenne Brothers’ ‘Le Silence de Lorna’

Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s “Three Monkeys” and the Dardenne brothers’ “Le Silence de Lorna” are two films that provoked feelings of admiration at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, and not without reason. Ceylan is one of the consistent Turkish auteurs whose filmography is distinguished for the austere and cinematographic-specific way it treats its subject matter. The same applies to the Dardenne brothers who have created a distinctive filming style that deftly oscillates between emotional detachment and intense involvement.

Among other similarities, the two films share an emphasis on cinematographic narration in the way Robert Bresson understood it, that is, as a diegetic form that is not subservient to the plot or the scenario. In both films, the camera does not function as a means of reproduction of a pro-filmic reality, but as an instigator of emotions, gestures and responses that are not necessarily predetermined by the script. On the surface, they
See full article at The Moving Arts Journal »

Key Players in the Cannes Market: Celluloid Dreams

The French sales/production company is supplying this year's Cannes fest with a trio of titles, but you might find me doing cartwheels more for a project that hasn't even began lensing in Marjane Satrapi's Waiting for Azrael. - The French sales/production company is supplying this year's Cannes fest with a trio of titles, but you might find me doing cartwheels more for a project that hasn't even began lensing in Marjane Satrapi's Waiting for Azrael. Red, white and green helmer Daniele Luchetti returns to the French festival for the umpteenth time with La Nostra Vita (see pic above) and Takeshi Kitano will break decibel levels with Outrage --- the film's trailer says it all. Celluloid Dreams' is also repping something for doc enthusiasts and tourists who love Paris: Fred Wiseman's Crazy Horse. If I Want To Whistle I Whistle by Florin Serban - Completed La Nostra Vita
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Key Players in the Cannes Market: Celluloid Dreams

The French sales/production company is supplying this year's Cannes fest with a trio of titles, but you might find me doing cartwheels more for a project that hasn't even began lensing in Marjane Satrapi's Waiting for Azrael. Red, white and green helmer Daniele Luchetti returns to the French festival for the umpteenth time with La Nostra Vita (see pic above) and Takeshi Kitano will break decibel levels with Outrage --- the film's trailer says it all. Celluloid Dreams' is also repping something for doc enthusiasts and tourists who love Paris: Fred Wiseman's Crazy Horse. If I Want To Whistle I Whistle by Florin Serban - Completed La Nostra Vita by Daniele Luchetti - Completed Outrage by Takeshi Kitano - Completed REVOLUCIÓN by Carlos Reygadas - Completed We Are The Night by Dennis Gansel - Post-Production A Prophet (Un Prophete) by Jacques Audiard - Completed Apart Together (Tuan Yuan
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Toronto Film Critics Announces Its Best Of The Year

As the various critic associations around North America continue to release their picks for the best in film of the past year, my hometown's critic association (well, my home is very close to Toronto) has unveiled their list of awards:

Best Picture (tie)

Hunger

Inglourious Basterds

Runner Up: The Hurt Locker

Best Actor

Nicolas Cage - The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans

Runners-up:

George Clooney - Up in the Air

Michael Fassbender - Hunger

Colin Firth - A Single Man

Viggo Mortensen - The Road

Best Actress

Carey Mulligan - An Education

Runners-up:

Arta Dobroshi - Le Silence de Lorna

Meryl Streep - Julie & Julia

Best Supporting Actor

Christoph Waltz - Inglourious Basterds

Runners-up:

Christian McKay - Me & Orson Welles

Timothy Olyphant - A Perfect Getaway

Best Supporting Actress

Anna Kendrick - Up in the Air

Runners-up:

Vera Farmiga - Up in the Air

Mo’nique - Precious:
See full article at AMC - Script to Screen »

More Love For The Hurt Locker, Plus Basterds, The White Ribbon And More ...

It's verging on a sweep for Kathryn Bigelow.  Fresh off the Golden Globe nom for The Hurt Locker, the Toronto Film Critic's Association has just published their list of award winners and while the film itself didn't get the best picture nod, there Bigelow is again as best director.  The fact that they picked Nicolas Cage as best actor for his role in Bad Lieutenant makes me particularly proud of where I live, as does the general diversity of the rest of the list.  If we're not careful people might actually start to think that Toronto's critics actually watch more than is available in the multiplex ...

The list!

Best Picture (Tie)

    "Hunger" (Maple Pictures)

    "Inglourious Basterds" (Alliance Films)

Runner-up:

    "The Hurt Locker" (Maple Pictures)

Best Performance, Male

    Nicolas Cage, "The Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans"

Runners-up:

    George Clooney, "Up in the Air"

    Michael Fassbender, "Hunger"

    Colin Firth, "A Single Man"

    Viggo Mortensen,
See full article at Screen Anarchy »

Review: ‘Lorna’s Silence’

Lorna’S Silence (Le silence de Lorna) is the title of this newest film from the filmmaking brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne. The siblings’ films tend to be preoccupied with themes involving unconventional family dynamics and small-time underworld crime, such as The Promise (La promesse, 1996) and The Infant (L’enfant, 2005). Lorna’S Silence is no different, featuring a story similar in theme.

Lorna (Arta Dobroshi) is a young Albanian woman working in Belgium as a dry cleaner. Her dream is to open a small snack bar/cafe with her boyfriend Sokol. In order to pay for this venture, Lorna falls in with Fabio, a taxi driver with underworld connections. Fabio arranges for Lorna to marry a local junkie named Claudy (Jeremie Renier) so that she can acquire Belgian citizenship. Once done, Lorna and Claudy will divorce so that she can marry a Russian mobster who also wishes to obtain Belgian
See full article at WeAreMovieGeeks.com »

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.

Toronto film festival follows Cannes' lead

Toronto film festival follows Cannes' lead
TORONTO -- The Toronto International Film Festival made way for some Cannes heavyweights Thursday, unveiling Special Presentation slots for Laurent Cantet's Palme d'Or winner The Class and Matteo Garrone's Grand Prix winner Gomorrah among a group of about two dozen North American premieres.

Arnaud Desplechin's Un conte de Noel and Canadian helmer Atom Egoyan's Adoration -- both Cannes Competition titles -- also will get the red-carpet treatment in Toronto, alongside South Korean filmmaker Kim Jee-woon's Out of Competition "The Good, the Bad and the Weird."

Other Cannes entries making their Canadian splash include the Dardennes brothers' Lorna's Silence, best screenplay winner in Cannes; Jerzy Skolimowksi's Four Nights With Anna; Terence Davies' Of Time and the City; Jia Zhang-ke's 24 City; and Three Monkeys, which earned director Nuri Bilge Ceylan the best director trophy.

The quintet has been programmed as part of Toronto's Masters sidebar.

On the documentary side, films headed for Toronto include Blind Loves, from Slovakian director Juraj Lehotsky, Lisandro Alonso's Liverpool and Service, by Brillante Mendoza.

Cannes Competition titles from Brazil -- Walter Salles and Daniela Thomas' Linha de Passe and Pablo Trapero's Lion's Den -- headline a Contemporary World Cinema sidebar that includes Federico Veiroj's Acne, Bent Hamer's O'Horten, Amos Kollek's Restless and Gotz Spielmann's Revanche.

The Discovery program will feature Steve McQueen's Hunger, which earned the Camera d'Or in Cannes, U.S.

Cannes Producer's Patch: Celluloid Dreams

  • After a hugely successful Sundance film festival, it is to Cannes that the Paris-based Celluloid DreamsCelluloid Dreams
[/link] is looking towards with the hopes of finding a three peat victory with the Dardenne's latest. The Dardenne film is what we are most looking forward to seeing, the same goes for the Sundance winner, the IFC film Ballast and Director Fortnight's Better things.   Ballast  by Lance Hammer - Completed    Better Things  by Duane Hopkins - Completed     Bob Marley: Exodus 77  by Anthony Wall - Completed     Dog Eat Dog (Perro Come Perro)  by Carlos Moreno - Completed    Flow : For Love Of Water  by Irena Salina - Completed    Le Voyage Aux PYRÉNÉES  by Arnaud Larrieu,... - Completed     Lorna's Silence (Le Silence De Lorna)  by Jean-Pierre Dardenne,... - Completed     Mark Of An Angel (L'empreinte De L'ange)  by Safy Nebbou - Completed     Mia And The Migoo  by Jacques-Rémy Girerd - Completed    Patti Smith: Dream Of Life
See full article at IONCINEMA.com »

Complete 2008 Cannes Line Up: Main Comp, Ucr, Director's Fortnight & Critic's Week

  • Here is the complete 2008 Cannes Line Up. Main Competition: Nuri Bilge CeylanNuri Bilge Ceylan
[/link] - Three Monkeys (Turkey-France-Italy) Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne - Le Silence De Lorna (France-Belgium)Arnaud Desplechin - A Christmas Story (France) Clint Eastwood - Changeling (Us)Atom Egoyan - Adoration (Canada) Ari Folman - Waltz With Bashir (Israel) Philippe Garrel - La Frontiere De L'Aube (France) Matteo Garrone - Gomorra (Italy)Charlie Kaufman - Synecdoche, New York (Us) Eric Khoo - My Magic (Singapore) Lucretia Martel - La Mujer Sin Cabeza (Argentina-Spain) Brillante Mendoza - Serbis (The Philippines) Kornel Mondruczo - Delta (Hungary-Germany) Walter Salles & Daniela Thomas - Linha de Passe (Brazil) Paolo Sorrentino - Il Divo (Italy) Pablo Trapero - Lion's Den (Argentina-South Korea) Wim Wenders - The Palermo Shooting (Germany) Jia Zhangke - 24 City (China)Steven Soderbergh - Che (Us-Spain-France) -- one four-hour competion title comprised of The Argentine and Guerrilla Out of competitionSteven Spielberg -
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Best Bets Cannes 08: Main Competition

  • The heavyweights category (main comp) this year has a slew of great filmmakers - but it is the last experienced filmmakers that might make more of a splash. I'm guessing that the below five will send the buyers and critics into a frenzy...as well as get a sure shot at the Palme D'or... . Adoration (2008)Adoration
[/link] (Atom Egoyan)Egoyan continues exploring themes of identity with a coming-of-age film in the age of the internet. Adoration may just be his best work since The Sweet Hereafter. La Mujer Sin Cabeza (The Headless Woman) (Lucrecia Martel) Remaining with the theme of identity (a device found in her last picture Holy Girl, Argentinean director Lucrecia Martel brings a dramatic character study about a woman who believes to be guilty of something – but she is not sure what. Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman)The only directorial debut given a slot in the prestigious section
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Sony Classics shows some love for 'Adoration'

  • Behemoth indie distributor Sony Pictures Classics ("Redbelt", "Standard Operation Procedure") taps Atom EgoyanAtom Egoyan
[/link]'s Adoration for domestic and select international distribution rights. Egoyan, producer of 2006's "Away From Here", is preeming his new directorial exploit "Adoration" at the 61st annual Cannes Film Festival in the main comp section against the likes of Clint Eastwood's "Changeling" and perennial Cannes darlings Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne with their film "Le Silence De Lorna". "Adoration", besides being rumored to be in the hot seat for Palme d'Or honors, stars Scott Speedman ("Felicity") as the legacy of two historical figures and Rachel Blanchard (who makes it two for two with Egoyan after starring in his tantalizing Where the Truth Lies). Adoration is set in the near-future and involves a high school student who creates an online avatar that stimulates a real-life community of mourners for a fictional catastrophe. Sabine, a high school French teacher,
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