Ghent sees big
by Anne Feuillère
09/10/2007 - The 34th Flanders International Film Festival – Ghent (October 9-20) is seeing big this year, with not one but two opening ceremonies.
The “pre-opening ceremony” took place yesterday evening with a screening of Michael Moore’s Sicko, while the official opening ceremony will be held this evening. Not content with just one opening film, the festival has this year decided to screen three – one for each of the three sections of the festival.
Official competition opens with Austria’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar candidate, Stefan Ruzowitszky’s The Counterfeiter [trailer], while the Almost Cinema sidebar is offering Sand & Sorrow, a documentary on Darfur directed by Paul Freedman.
Closing the Ring by British filmmaker Lord Richard Attenborough features in the Festival Previews section, which is hosting 20 prestigious preview screenings.
Presided over by US actress Kathleen Turner, the jury will have to decide between 12 features, most of which are European. Seven are European productions and two are French co-productions (The Band’s Visit [trailer] by Israeli director Eran Kolirin and La Leon by Argentinean director Santiago Otheguy).
After his controversial Princess [trailer], Danish helmer Anders Morgenthaler will present his latest feature Echo [trailer] at Ghent. Also from Northern Europe is Roy Andersson’s feature You, the Living [trailer, film focus].
In addition to two German co-productions (The Counterfeiter and Ozer Kiziltan’s Turkish co-production Takva: A Man's Fear of God [trailer]), other films from throughout Europe include In Memory Of Myself [trailer] by Italian director Saverio Constanzo, This is England [trailer] by British director Shane Meadows and Krysztof Krauze and Joanna Kos-Krauze’s Polish title Saviour Square [trailer].
As well as hosting a Belgian shorts competition, the World Cinema and A Look Apart sections, and a wide range of activities, exhibitions and concerts, this year’s festival has as its theme Argentina and its music, which will be present in all festival sections.
Producer and US director Walter Hill and actor Danny Glover will both receive a Lifetime Achievement Award, while the festival will end on a musical note with the presentation of the World Soundtrack Awards.
Ken Loach’s latest feature It’s a Free World... [trailer] will close the event.
Nominations for the World Soundtrack Awards
Film Composer of the Year
Mychael Danna (Little Miss Sunshine, Breach, The Nativity Story, Fracture)
Alexandre Desplat (The Queen [trailer, film focus], The Painted Veil)
Philip Glass (Notes on a Scandal [trailer])
Harry Gregson Williams (Déjà Vu, Shrek the Third, The Number 23, Flushed Away [trailer])
John Powell (Happy Feet)
Best Original Score of the Year
The Fountain (Clint Mansell)
Little Miss Sunshine (Mychael Danna – DeVotchKa)
Notes on a Scandal (Philip Glass)
Shrek the Third (Harry Gregson Williams)
Zodiac (David Shire)
Best Original Song Written for a Film
“Le Festin”, Ratatouille (Michael Giacchino)
“Falling Slowly”, Once (Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova)
“I Need to Wake Up”, An Inconvenient Truth (Melissa Etheridge)
“When You Taught Me How To Dance”, Miss Potter [trailer] (Mike Batt, Nigel Westlake, & Richard Maltby, Jr.)
“You Know My Name”, Casino Royale [trailer] (Chris Cornell & David Arnold)
(Translated from French)