Europe in spotlight at Cannes
by Domenico La Porta
11/05/2011 - After young French actress Mélanie Laurent opens tonight’s ceremonies at the 64th Cannes Film Festival, it will almost be time to launch into the official competition. This year, Croisette veterans (Lars Von Trier, Pedro Almodóvar, the Dardenne brothers, Aki Kaurismäki, Nanni Moretti,…) are in the line-up alongside nine newcomers who are proof of Thierry Frémaux’s desire to take risks. Ther are sure to be some great surprises from both groups of directors, which are dominated by Europe (13 films out of 20 – see news).
Out of competition, the audience and jury presided by Robert De Niro will be able to delve into the history of cinema for the 12-minute duration of A Trip to the Moon. George Mélies’s 267th film, which was recently rediscovered in a coloured version, will be presented this evening at the prestigious Grand Théâtre Lumière before a second opening film by Woody Allen, Midnight in Paris [trailer], also in European mode.
Like the official competition, Frédéric Boyer’s Directors’ Fortnight selection (see news) brings together its share of established talents as well as some fine discoveries, and again a majority presence of European films (16 out of 25).
The section will open with The Fairy [trailer, film focus] (Belgium), by directorial trio Dominique Abel, Fiona Gordon and Bruno Romy (who were in the 2008 Fortnight with Rumba [trailer, film focus]) and will close with The Giants [trailer, film focus], another Belgian production by director Bouli Lanners, whose Eldorado [trailer] also screened in the Directors’ Fortnight.
Europe is also well represented in International Critics’ Week, with five fully European productions and three co-productions in the 11-strong feature film selection; as it is in Un Certain Regard.
(Translated from French)