During the pandemic, no major film festival has been more shaken than Cannes, forced to cancel its 2020 event and push dates back to midsummer for next year’s crowded event. Now, this essential showcase of world art cinema looks to be back on its feet with a diverse cast that includes everything from Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis to the directorial debut of Presley’s real-life granddaughter, Riley Keough, whose Beast (directed by Gina Gammel) takes place on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
Optimistic-sounding at a press conference on the Champs Elysées in Paris, artistic director Thierry Fremaux announced new films by George Miller (Three Thousand Years of Longing), David Cronenberg (Crime of the Future), Kelly Reichardt (Pointing Up) and James Gray ( “Time of Armageddon”) in the official selection.
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Accompanied by outgoing festival president Pierre Lescour, Frémaux announced the opening film, Michel Hazanvicius’ Final Cut, which was originally chosen for Sundance but was withdrawn after that festival went virtual due to the Omicron surge in mid-January. (A year before the pandemic, Cannes opened with another Jim Jarmusch zombie comedy, The Dead Don’t Die.)
Fremaux also confirmed the world premiere of Top Gun: Maverick, along with a tribute to Tom Cruise, on the second day of the festival, which will again take place from May 17 to 28. Along with Elvis in celebrating 20th century rock legends are two musical films: Ethan Cohen’s out-of-competition doc “Jerry Lee Lewis: Trouble in Mind” and “Moonage Daydream”, a midnight film celebrating David Bowie’s montage of Brett Morgen in the vein of his film about Kurt Cobain.
The competition program included new works by several returning Palme d’Or winners: Ruben Östlund’s social satire The Triangle of Sorrows, the Korean film The Broker by Japanese director Koreeda Hirokazu, the politically biased film RMN by Romanian director Cristian Mungiu, and the Belgian duo. “Tori and Lokita” by the Dardenne brothers, aimed at immigrants.
Last year, to (prematurely) celebrate the end of the pandemic, the official line-up increased to 80 titles, compared to just 49 announced at the press conference – although Frémaux indicated that several more would follow next week. The additions will likely include more films by women, perhaps even from Africa. During the press conference, Frémaux suggested that this was a difficult year for the selection committee due to the large number of films submitted—over 2,200 films—and the fact that many of them entered very late. He said that before the pandemic, the number of films submitted was always below 2,000 titles.
Although the pandemic is not over yet and many countries are currently experiencing a surge in infections, Fremaux said “the landscape of world cinema is starting to bounce back and this year marks a return to near-normality.”
Fremo also noted that the composition of the jury will be announced after the official selection, and not vice versa, as in previous years. He suggested that the delay in the assembly of the jury was due to the availability of talent.
“Today, artists work in the film industry, but not only in it,” Fremaux said. “They’re also working on other formats, and it’s interesting to see… how the industry bounces back.”
The latest rumors in the industry suggest that two-time Oscar winner Iranian director Asghar Farhadi has been offered to chair the jury. Penélope Cruz, previously considered a potential jury president, is expected to appear on the Croisette in the L’Immensita category, which could be a late addition to the competition.
Cannes has been criticized in recent years for not recognizing and encouraging female talent, blatantly failing to live up to its promise of gender parity with human rights organization 5050×2020 (now aptly called 50:50 Future). This year, only three films from women participate in the competition: in addition to Reichardt, French directors Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi (“Forever Young”) and Claire Denis, who has just arrived from Berlin (“Stars at Noon”), claim the palm branch. It is worth noting that women won the main prize at all major festivals last year – in Cannes (Titan), Venice (Happening and Power of the Dog), Toronto (Uni), Berlin (Uni). Alcarraz” and “On Both Sides of the Blade”) and “Sundance” (“Nanny”) – assuming that the palm may well go to one of these three.
There are no first feature films in the competition this year, although Golden Camera winner Lukas Dont (The Girl) will show his second feature Close, along with 83-year-old veteran Jerzy Skolimowski (The Deep End), whose film Eo » is dedicated to the donkey. Two Ukrainian directors, Sergei Loznitsa (Natural History of Destruction) and Maxim Nakonechny (Vision of a Butterfly), along with one Russian dissident director Kirill Serebrennikov, were invited to participate in the Tchaikovsky’s Wife competition.
In addition to the expected North American films on the out-of-competition list, there are also several stellar French films, including November by Cédric Jiménez with Jean Dujardin, Anaïs Demoustier and Sandrine Kimberlain, and Nicolas Bedos’ film November. Masquerade” with Isabelle Adjani and Pierre Nine. Jimenez and Bedos previously presented “The Stronghold” and “La Belle Epoque” respectively in the out-of-competition section.
PROGRAM OF THE CANNES FILM FESTIVAL 2022
Armageddon Time, James Gray (USA)
“Boy from heaven”, Tarik Saleh (Sweden)
“Broker”, Koreeda Hirokazu (Japan)
“Brother and Sister” OR “Frère et Sœur”, Arnaud Desplechin (France)
“Close”, Lucas Dont (Belgium)
Crimes of the Future, David Cronenberg (Canada)
“Decision to Leave” OR “Haeochil Gyeolsim”, Park Chang-Wook (South Korea)
“Eo” OR “Hi-Khan”, Jerzy Skolimowski (Poland)
“Forever Young” OR “Les Amandiers”, Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi (France)
“Holy Spider”, Ali Abbasi (Iran)
Leyla Brothers, Said Rustai (Iran)
“Nostalgia”, Mario Martone (Italy)
“RMN”, Cristian Mungiu (Romania)
“Appearance”, Kelly Reichardt (USA)
“Stars at noon”, Claire Denis (France)
“Tchaikovsky’s wife”, Kirill Serebrennikov (Russia)
“Tori and Lokita”, Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne (Belgium)
Triangle of Sorrow, Ruben Östlund (Sweden)
Courtesy of Neon
A DEFINITE ATTITUDE
“All the People I’ll Never Be” OR “Retour à Séoul” by Davy Chow (Cambodia)
“The Beast”, Riley Keough and Gina Gammell (USA)
“Burning Days”, Emin Alper (Turkey)
«Butterfly Vision», Maxim Nakonechny (Ukraine)
Corsage, Marie Krützer (Austria)
“Domingo and Fog”, Ariel Escalante Meza (Costa Rica)
“Godlandia”, Hlinur Palmason (Iceland)
“Joyland”, Saim Sadiq (Pakistan)
“Metronome”, Alexandru Belc (Romania)
“Plan 75”, Hayakawa Chie (Japan)
“Rodeo”, Lola Quivoron (France)
“It hurts from myself”, Kristoffer Borgley (Norway)
Silent Twins, Agnieszka Smocinska (Poland)
The Stranger, Thomas M. Wright (Australia)
“The Worst” OR “Les Pires”, Liz Akora and Roman Gueret (France)
Courtesy of Paramount Pictures
OUT OF COMPETITION
“Elvis”, Baz Luhrmann (USA-Australia)
“Final Cut” OR “Z (Comme Z)”, Michel Hazanvicius (France) — OPERATOR
“Masquerade”, Nicolas Bedos (France)
“November”, Cedric Jimenez (France)
“Three Thousand Years of Longing”, George Miller (Australia)
Top Gun: Maverick, Joseph Kosinski (USA)
Courtesy of the Sundance Institute
“Fumer fait tousser”, Quentin Dupier (France)
“Hunt”, Lee Chung Jae (South Korea)
“Moonage Daydream”, Brett Morgen (USA)
“All That Breathes”, Shonak Sen (India)
“Natural History of Destruction”, Sergey Loznitsa (Ukraine)
“Jerry Lee Lewis: Problems in the Head”, Ethan Cohen (USA)
“Dodo”, Panos H. Koutras (Greece)
“Irma Vep”, Olivier Assayas (France)
“Twilight”, Marco Bellocchio (Italy)
“Nos Frangins”, Rachid Bouchareb (France)
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