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You could sort of say we’re on his jock and we wouldn’t argue much. This is because French Canadian filmmaker Denis Villeneuve has been non-stop killing it in recent years and he’s the kind of filmmaker we love because he uses genre as a Trojan Horse to explore the heart and soul of mankind. He’s a thinking man’s filmmaker and it shows in his work. The searing drama “Incendies” earned him a Foreign Language Academy Award nomination, “Enemy” with Jake Gyllenhaal was a nightmarish existentialist thriller, and “Prisoners” with Gyllenhaal again and Hugh Jackman was a bruising crime procedural. Since then, everyone wants to work with Villeneuve cause they’ve also seen the work and noticed he’s the real deal. Read More: Roger Deakins To Shoot Denis Villeneuve's 'Blade Runner' Sequel. He’s already bagged the coveted director’s chair for the “Blade Runner” sequel, »
- Edward Davis
Sicario: Bring Out the Popcorn
Directed by Denis Villeneuve
Written by Taylor Sheridan
Denis Villeneuve’s narco-thriller Sicario is likely the most broadly accessible film in this year’s competition, a very watchable, schematically Hollywoodian production more at home at the Oscars than at Cannes. It stars, tragically, Emily Blunt as FBI agent Kate Macer and, unsurprisingly, Benicio Del Toro as special drugs advisor Alejandro. Kate is recruited from her hostage crisis unit to a secretive anti-drugs mission at the margins of legality following a gruesome, finely crafted opening sequence in which she leads the bust of a safe house full of rows of executed hostages concealed into the walls. Gradually she clues in as to the nature of the mission – her role is merely procedural, as the presence of an FBI agent is apparently obligatory as a front for Alejandro and rogue operation head Matt (Josh Brolin »
While we know next to nothing about the plot for the upcoming Blade Runner sequel, we do know that at the very least, it's going to look gorgeous, as renowned cinematographer Roger Deakins has joined the team. Come inside to learn more.
Blade Runner 2 is moving full steam ahead. Just a couple months ago it was announced Denis Villenueve had been hired on to direct the sequel, with Harrison Ford set to return, and it looks like they're starting to build up the rest of the necessary behind the scenes crew to get production moving. Announced at Cannes, Roger Deakins, the cinematographer behind Prisoners, Skyfall, Fargo, and Many others has been hired on as the Dop for the new movie. Deakins has worked with Villenueve on his last two movies, so it shouldn't come as much of a surprise.
The original Blade Runner is still a visually striking movie, and »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Jordan Maison)
Oh wow. So cinematographer Roger Deakins has signed on to shoot Denis Villeneuve's "Blade Runner" sequel. I'm paying attention now, folks. Seriously, this whole project has been filed under "whatever" for me for the longest time. But then I have a dirty little secret that I suspect is shared by more than a few who just don't want to get into it: I've never agreed with the legions who think Ridley Scott's original film is an indispensable work of modern art. But…not going to get into it. I've mainly just been snoozing at the prospect of revisiting the material because of your standard grade reboot/sequel-itis. However, when Denis Villeneuve joined up, I got a little excited. This isn't some run-of-the-mill action director sure to lumber his way through the thing. Villeneuve is a pretty intriguing new voice. I didn't love the scripts for "Incendies" or "Prisoners, »
- Kristopher Tapley
Roger Deakins' work on Denis Villeneuve's "Prisoners" was so good that we dedicated an entire piece to what turned out to be our favorite single shot in 2013. The duo have reteamed on the director's latest procedural "Sicario" (review here), but we've had our fingers crossed they would jump into sci-fi together. And hell yes, it's happening. Deakins has been hired to shoot the untitled "Blade Runner" sequel to be helmed by Villeneuve and to star Harrison Ford and reportedly Ryan Gosling. Hampton Fancher (co-writer of the original) and Michael Green have penned the story that takes place several decades after the conclusion of the 1982 original. Shooting kicks off in summer 2016 and now I'm getting pretty excited. Full press release below. ---------- Los Angeles, CA, May, 20, 2015 – Twelve-time Academy Award-nominated cinematographer Roger Deakins will join director Denis Villeneuve (Prisoners, Incendies) on Alcon »
- Kevin Jagernauth
After the Oscar-nominated Incendies and his habitual auteur films (Enemy, Prisoners), Denis Villeneuve forays into more mainstream cinema with the Michael Mann-esque Sicario, a thriller exploring the escalating war on drugs whose battleground is often the Tex-Mex border. Villeneuve seems relieved that the notorious Cannes critics liked the movie. “Cannes has the reputation of being difficult. We heard 15 minutes after the screening ended that the reactions were very positive.” Benicio Del Toro, winner of the best actor Palme in 2008 for Che, garnered the most applause as his name flashed in the closing credits. It is indeed he and Josh Brolin who carry the film. (One journalist at the press conference following the screening even mistook him for Brolin’s co-star in No Country For Old Men. “I wasn’t in that movie, but thank you, that’s a compliment,” was Del Toro’s response.) Sicario appears to be new territory for Villeneuve. »
- Talia Soghomonian
In the beginning stages of his career (with the exception of Maelstrom showing in Berlin), Denis Villeneuve was an habitual of the Cannes Film Festival. His filmography has been embraced up and down the Croisette with short Cosmos (1996) and Polytechnique (2009) showing in the Directors’ Fortnight section, Un 32 août sur terre (1998) showing in the Un Certain Regard and his savoury short Next Floor (2008) landing at the Critics’ Week, but the Quebecois helmer was left scratching his head when Incendies (2010), Enemy (2013) and possibly Prisoners (2013) failed to receive the same approbation. Going in with zero expectations, especially with a cross-border thriller, his seventh film finally won him an In Comp berth. Considering the amount of Palme d’Or contenders receiving pans from the critic community, Sicario might actually not be so out of place as first conceived.
- Eric Lavallee
"The violence of the inter-American drug trade has served as the backdrop for any number of films for more than three decades, but few have been as powerful and superbly made as Sicario," declares the Hollywood Reporter's Todd McCarthy. Starring Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro, Josh Brolin, Jon Bernthal and Victor Garber, the latest from Denis Villeneuve (Polytechnique, Incendies, Prisoners and Enemy) is premiering in Competition in Cannes—and we're gathering reviews. "The craft is impeccable," grants Jessica Kiang at the Playlist, "with Roger Deakins's cinematography and the spectacular Jóhann Jóhannsson score." » - David Hudson »
Two years after making his U.S. debut with the crackerjack kidnapping drama “Prisoners,” French-Canadian director Denis Villeneuve ups his own ante with “Sicario,” a blisteringly intense drug-trade thriller that combines expert action and suspense with another uneasy inquiry into the emotional consequences of violence. A densely woven web of compelling character studies and larger systemic concerns, Villeneuve and screenwriter Taylor Sheridan’s bleaker, more jaundiced riposte to Steven Soderbergh’s 2000 “Traffic” may prove too grim and grisly for some audiences and too morally ambiguous for others. But with its muscular style and top-flight cast, this fall Lionsgate release should score solid (if less than “Prisoners”-sized) business from discerning adult moviegoers, along with dark-horse awards-season buzz.
- Scott Foundas
The violence of the inter-American drug trade has served as the backdrop for any number of films for more than three decades, but few have been as powerful and superbly made as Sicario. Drenched in many shades of ambiguity as it dramatizes a complex U.S.-led effort to take out a major Mexican drug lord south of the border, Denis Villeneuve’s intensely physical new work is no less disturbing than his previous features Prisoners and Incendies and should be able to generate similar mid-level business as the former due to its relatable lawman (and law woman) elements.
- Todd McCarthy
Susanne Bier Oscar winner 'In a Better World' director Susanne Bier Susanne Bier, whose In a Better World won the 2011 Best Foreign Language Film Academy Award, is seen above on the 83rd Academy Awards' Red Carpet, just outside the Kodak Theatre. The other 2011 Oscar nominees in the Best Foreign Language Film category were: Rachid Bouchareb's Outside the Law / Hors-la-loi (Algeria). Alejandro González Iñárritu's Biutiful (Mexico). Yorgos Lanthimos' Dogtooth (Greece). Denis Villeneuve's Incendies (Canada). As in previous years, several international favorites were left out of the 2011 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar competition. Among these were the following: Xavier Beauvois' French Academy César winner Of Gods and Men / Des hommes et des dieux (France). Semih Kaplanoglu's 2010 Berlin Film Festival winner Bal / Honey (Turkey). Apichatpong Weerasethakul's 2010 Cannes Film Festival winner Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives / Loong Boonmee raleuk chat (Thailand). Prior to In a Better World, »
- D. Zhea
Last year's edition of the Cannes International Film Festival brought with it the usual early awards possibilities. Some went the distance (Bennett Miller's "Foxcatcher" in a number of categories). Others fell short (Mike Leigh's "Mr. Turner"). But while Sundance is certainly stepping up its awards-relevance game, the Croisette is where people really start pondering how the film year will shake out once the Oscar drums start banging late in the fall. One person who has leaned into the fest heavily the last couple of years is Harvey Weinstein. He has consistently held an event showcasing materials for The Weinstein Company's upcoming releases there, but this year he has a pair of films actually in competition that could make waves on the circuit. And it all starts with one of the most long-awaited films of the bunch. Todd Haynes' adaptation of Patricia Highsmith's "Carol" is, along with »
- Kristopher Tapley
Hilary Swank Oscar dress Hilary Swank on Oscars' Red Carpet Pictured above is Hilary Swank, wearing an Oscar dress consisting of (what looks like) tons of frills and feathers, on the 2011 Academy Awards Red Carpet this past Sunday, Feb. 27. Swank wasn't nominated for anything, but she acted as a presenter of sorts at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. How so? Well, she introduced last year's Best Director winner, Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker), who then presented this year's Best Director Oscar to Tom Hooper for The King's Speech. Two-time Oscar winner Hilary Swank has taken home two Best Actress Oscar statuettes. Kimberly Peirce's Boys Don't Cry (1999). Clint Eastwood's Million Dollar Baby (2004). These were her only two nominations as well. Both times she beat Annette Bening, who was in the running this year once again for her role as a lesbian wife and mother in Lisa Cholodenko's The Kids Are All Right, »
- D. Zhea
Despite being an acclaimed filmmaker thanks to the likes of "Incendies" and "Prisoners," it's still must be a tough gig for Denis Villeneuve to take the helm of a sequel to one of the most famous sci-fi films ever made - Ridley Scott's "Blade Runner".
Scott is only producing the follow-up, allowing Villeneuve to direct the movie which will star Harrison Ford and Ryan Gosling. A full year out from production getting underway, the director has spoken with The National Post about the gig and says he's been keen to tackle the sci-fi genre for a long time:
"People were asking me, what do you want to do? I said science fiction, always science fiction. I'm dreaming to do science fiction since a very long time. So now that the door is open, I'm just jumping into it. My soul will be filled if I do that... I'm ready »
- Garth Franklin
Now that he’s been booked to helm a Blade Runner sequel that may star Ryan Gosling along with Harrison Ford, it’s fair to say that Prisoners director Denis Villeneuve has officially arrived. But the French-Canadian auteur has really been stunning critics ever since his Oscar-nominated breakout Incendies back in 2010, and the general public is just a little late to the party. Before he heads into blockbuster territory for that sequel, though, Villeneuve will unveil a smaller but also exciting project: drug trafficking thriller Sicario.
Lionsgate just unveiled the first official image from the film, which stars Emily Blunt, Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin, Jon Bernthal and Victor Garber. Honestly, that cast alone would be enough to get most cinephiles in line for a ticket, but what’s really exciting about Sicario (other than that it’s that rare actioner that’s led by a strong female character, a »
- Isaac Feldberg
While some filmmakers only find out the night before, Cannes Film Festival’s Thierry Frémaux informed Denis Villeneuve that he’d be part of the Main Comp mix almost three weeks back. Having been on the Croisette before with his debut film Un 32 août sur Terrre (Un Certain Regard), and the Directors’ Fortnight was home for his epic short Next Floor and sobering Polytechnique, the Quebecois helmer saw his critically lauded Incendies and Enemy receive a pass from the fest, but it was this work that ultimately convinced backers with deep pockets to have the auteur filmmaker move onto large-scale productions (Prisoners, Story of Us, the Blade Runner sequel), and in turn Sicario is now among the hopefuls for the Palme d’Or.
The film’s Canadian distributor Entertainment One hosted a press conference the morning of the Cannes announcement and we learned that the filmmaker (who is one degree »
- Eric Lavallee
In 1989, a young man killed fourteen women at Montreal’s Polytechnique school of engineering with a Mini-14 semi-automatic carbine. In 2009’s Polytechnique, the tragedy is fictionalized in deep focus black and white that clarifies every bullet hole. There is the placid face of the young man pausing to reload his carbine. And you, the onlooker, plead at the screen the way you would for the victim of some slasher villain, “For god’s sake, somebody do something. Get him while he reloads!” We know this narrative, the angry predator, the innocent victims. It typically serves a romantic purpose, allowing the half formed young individual to reach definition through heroism and self-sacrifice. But here the square jawed young man is directionless in the face of chaos. He wanders through the hallways with no plan. He saves no one. Even the female survivor, in a subversion of “final girl” hood, discovers only »
- Adam Hofbauer
Denis Villeneuve is on fire after 2010's Incendies followed by Prisoners and Enemy. Now he has Sicario coming later this year with an already impressive cast that includes the likes of Emily Blunt and Josh Brolin, and to go with that he's attached to direct the Untitled Blade Runner Project, but it appears before he heads to the world of Blade Runner he has a project lined up for mid-June with Jeremy Renner and Amy Adams set to star. The film is Story of Your Life, an adaptation of the short story by Nebula and Hugo Award-winning author Ted Chiang. The story is set in motion when alien crafts land around the world, and an expert linguist (Adams) is recruited by the military to determine whether they come in peace or are a threat. amz asin="1931520720" size="small"As she learns to communicate with the aliens, she begins experiencing vivid »
- Brad Brevet
The Paramount pic, an adaptation of Hugo Award-winning author Ted Chiang’s short story, takes place in a world reeling from the sudden arrival of alien crafts around the world. As world leaders grapple with the new species, an expert linguist (Adams) is recruited by the military to determine whether the aliens come in peace or pose a grave threat to humanity. As she slowly learns to communicate with the aliens, she begins to experience intense flashbacks, which could hold the key to figuring out what the aliens want from Earth.
Renner will take on the supporting role of a physics professor who joins the linguist in her quest to understand the extraterrestrial visitors.
- Isaac Feldberg
Yesterday was a good day for the internet. The headlines were full of loose llama news, debates over the color of a dress and then just when you thought it couldn't get any more interesting, it was announced that a director had been hired for the Blade Runner sequel.
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