Cannes adds more new titles

Dario Argento makes acting début for Gaspar Noë

by Richard Mowe

Cannes-bound … Ari Folman’s Where Is Anne Frank?, the latest animated feature from the director of Waltz With Bashir
Cannes-bound … Ari Folman’s Where Is Anne Frank?, the latest animated feature from the director of Waltz With Bashir Photo: Wild Bunch

The organisers of this year’s Cannes Film Festival (running from 7 to 17 July) have added additional titles to the official selection (already announced on 3 June) including Vortex by French enfant terrible Gaspar Noë and the latest animated feature from Israel’s Ari (Waltz With Bashir) Folman, Where Is Anne Frank?

Vortex, which features Italian horror director Dario Argento (80) in his first acting role, alongside Françoise Lebrun, details the last days of an elderly couple. It features in the Cannes Première section.

From Somalia to Critics’ Week: Somalian director Khadar Ayderus Ahmed’s The Gravedigger’s Wife
From Somalia to Critics’ Week: Somalian director Khadar Ayderus Ahmed’s The Gravedigger’s Wife Photo: Semaine de la Critique

Folman, (Oscar nominated and Golden Globe winner for Waltz With Bashir), has adapted Anne Frank’s internationally-loved classic The Diary Of A Young Girl. Folman has talked of “the real need for new artistic material to keep the memory [of Frank] alive for younger generations.” His own parents were Holocaust survivors, who were sent to Auschwitz the day after they were married in the Jewish ghetto in Lodz, Poland.

Another addition (to Un Certain Regard) is Mes Frères Et Moi, based on a stage play which stars newcomers Sofia Khammes and Dali Benssalah, directed by Yohan Manca.

A musical comedy by cult directorial brothers Arnaud and Jean-Maire Larrieu Tralala with Mathieu Amalric, Maïwenn, Mélanie Thierry, Josiane Balasko and Denis Lavant is to receive a midnight screening, a slot also reserved for Audrey Esrtrougo’s take on iconic French rap band NTM, titled Supremes.

Special screenings now in the mix include Bill Murray’s Party: New Worlds, The Cradle Of A Civilisation, a concert film by Andrew Muscato; Mi Iubta Mon Amour, the directorial début of actor-turned-filmmaker Noemie Merlant (Portrait Of A Lady On Fire); Les Heroiques, a daring addiction-themed feature début by Maxime Roy; and Are You Lonesome Tonight?, Chinese director Wen Shipei’s feature début.

Still awaiting an announcement are the opening film in Un Certain Regard and the film which will follow the awards ceremony on 17 July.

Undercover … Gaspard Noë’s Vortex with Dario Argento in an acting role
Undercover … Gaspard Noë’s Vortex with Dario Argento in an acting role Photo: Wild Bunch

Meanwhile the 60th anniversary edition of Cannes Critics’ Week (devoted to first and second films) will open with Constance Meyer’s Robust, a comedy-drama starring Gérard Depardieu and Déborah Lukumuena (first noticed in Divines). The film focusses on the curious bond between a fading film star and a semi-professional wrestler.

The Week will close with Leyla Bouzid’s A Tale Of Love And Desire after more than 13 premières, including actress Sandrine Kiberlain’s directorial début A Radiant Girl (about a young woman who aspires to become an actress in 1942 in Nazi-occupied France) and a romantic comedy from Charline Bourgeois-Tacquet, Anaïs In Love, featuring Anaïs Demoustier.

Other highlights promise to be Clara Roquet’s Libertad, a coming-of-age story about two young women from different social classes who become friends over a summer; Somalian director Khadar Ayderus Ahmed’s The Gravedigger’s Wife, a poetic drama shot in Djibouti about a man who sets off to cross the desert to find a cure for his dying wife; Elie Grappe’s Olga, which focuses on a Ukrainian gymnast living in exile in Switzerland with her mother who is a politically-engaged journalist; and Italian helmer Laura Samani’s Small Body, dealing with a mother who mourns her newborn baby while clashing with the religious diktat in 19th century Italy.

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