Amelio, Crialese join Sorrentino, Moretti on Croisette
by Camillo de Marco
22/02/2011 - The highly anticipated This Must Be the Place by Paolo Sorrentino, co-produced by France’s ARP Sélection and sold by Pathé Pictures International (articolo), and Habemus Papam by Nanni Moretti (see news), co-produced by France’s Le Pacte and sold by Fandango Portobello, won’t be the only Italians heading to Cannes this year (see news).
At least another two films by esteemed directors are headed to the world’s most prestigious film festival, although in which section is not yet known. The first is Gianni Amelio’s The First Man based on the Albert Camus novel. The Franco-Italian cast is headed by Jacques Gamblin (Silver Bear winner at the 2002 Berlinale for Laissez-passer [trailer]) in the role of Jacques Cormery, 40, who in the 1950s returns to his native Algeria. He is flanked by Maya Sansa, Denis Podalydès, Régis Romele and Catherine Sola.
Like Moretti and Sorrentino, Amelio too had French involvement in his film. Besides Italy’s Cattleya (per un budget complessivo of €11.6m), the film is co-produced by Bruno Pesery’s Soudaine Compagnie (which had previously backed the director’s The House Keys [trailer] and Lamerica) Maison de Cinéma and France 3 Cinéma. International sales are handled Wild Bunch.
This is the first French-language film for Amelio, who won the Jury Grand Prize at Cannes in 1992 for Stolen Children.
As dear to French audiences as the aforementioned directors, Emanuele Crialese will be at Cannes with Terraferma, who should confirm once and for all the talent he showed in Respiro: Grazia’s Island [trailer] and Golden Door [trailer, film focus] (Revelation Silver Lion winner at the 2006 Venice Film Festival). In his case, the French participation is minor on the part of Babe Film, with most of the money comeing from Cattleya, RAI Cinema and with a contribution from the Ministry of Culture.
The cast features Donatella Finocchiaro, Beppe Fiorello, Mimmo Cuticchio, Martina Codecasa and Filippo Pucillo. Like Respiro, which was shot on Lampedusa, Terraferma is also set on a Sicilian island inhabited by fishermen, which barely has any tourism but is instead overrun by the arrival of illegal immigrants. The story uncannily reflects the heated international event of recent days.
(Translated from Italian)