“Man of Steel” delivered big–as expected. Despite mixed to negative reviews, the Warner-Legendary Pictures superhero reboot scored with its $125 million stateside debut, securing the biggest-ever opening in June.
Warners projects that “Man of Steel” actually made $113 million from Friday to Sunday, making it the 18th largest opening of all time, behind 2007′s “Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End” ($114.7 million). The additional $12 million for “Man of Steel” comes from late-night grosses Thursday.
“Man of Steel” also bowed in 25 overseas markets this weekend.
Sony, meanwhile, made a savvy counterprogramming move launching R-rated raunch fest “This Is the End” on Wednesday. The film, which cost just $32 million to produce, grossed an estimated $32.8 million in five days, of which $20.5 million came Friday-Sunday.
The one-two punch from the opening pics helped Stateside box office surge past the same frame last year by approximately 50%.
Among the weekend’s holdovers, Lionsgate-Summit’s sturdy little film “Now You See Me” grossed $10.3 million, down just 46% in its third frame, for a domestic cume of $80 million. Universal’s “Fast and Furious 6″ dropped 52% in its fourth frame, grossing $9.4 million. The pic has totaled $219.6 million domestically.
Dropping like a rock in its second outing, Universal’s “The Purge” fell 76% for a three-day estimate of $8.2 million. But the film cost just $3 million to produce and has already grossed an outstanding $51.8 million domestically.
At the specialty box office, Sony Pictures Classics’ “Before Midnight” totaled $1.5 million during its first nationwide push at 897 locations, bringing the pic’s domestic cume to $3.2 million. And Sofia Coppola’s “The Bling Ring” via A24 averaged a solid $42,000 per-screen in its debut frame at five theaters.
June 14, 2013–Paramount Home Media Distribution (PHMD) announced today that four beloved films starring the incomparable Danny Kaye are available on iTunes for the first time ever in celebration of The Danny Kaye Centennial.
Fans can now download the Oscar-nominated biopic The Five Pennies (1959), the musical comedy On the Double (1961), the period comedy The Court Jester (1955) and the hilarious caper Knock on Wood (1954), all quintessential family-friendly films that everyone can enjoy for Father’s Day. This year marks the 60th anniversary for Kaye as a UNICEF ambassador as well as the 60th anniversary of both the Knock on Wood and White Christmas releases.
In The Five Pennies Kaye cuts loose with his trademark dramatic and comedic talents in this success-tempered-with-tears biopic of jazz great Red Nichols, which features legendary performances by Louis Armstrong, along with big band icons Bob Crosby, Ray Anthony and Shelly Manne. In On the Double Kaye stars as Ernie Williams, a G.I. with weak eyes, a weak stomach and weak nerves but an uncanny resemblance to British Colonel MacKenzie. Williams is asked to impersonate the Colonel, allowing him to make a secret trip East – but what Williams is not told is that the Colonel has recently been a target of Nazi assassins. The Court Jester showcases Kaye’s variety of talents as he plays kind-hearted entertainer Hawkins who disguises himself as the legendary king of jesters, Giacomo. Hawkins infiltrates the court of the evil villain Basil Rathbone, but when a sorceress hypnotizes him, royal chaos ensues. In Knock on Wood Kaye is a ventriloquist who becomes the target of a spy ring when secret plans are hidden in his dummies’ heads.
The Danny Kaye Centennial, which began in late 2012 and continues into early 2014, is a celebration of events and activities honoring a legendary entertainer and trail blazing humanitarian’s amazing contributions to the arts. The event highlights this uniquely talented man who brought laughter and joy to generations and served as UNICEF’S first Goodwill Ambassador.
Kaye received countless accolades during his lifetime including Oscars, Emmys, Golden Globes, The French Legion of Honor, The Kennedy Center Honors and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Beginning in October of 2012 events around the country invited the public to experience the talents that made Danny Kaye one of a kind. These included programs with UNICEF, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), Jazz at Lincoln Center, the Library of Congress, the Paley Center for Media, Sirius XM Radio, Museum of the Moving Image and The New York Pops. The Danny Kaye Centennial will culminate with UNICEF presenting the Danny Kaye Humanitarian Award in January 2014.
George Lucas and Steven Spielberg predicted the imminent arrival of a radically different entertainment landscape, including pricey movie tickets, a vast migration of content to video-on-demand and even programmable dreams.
Speaking on a panel at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, Spielberg and Lucas took a grim view of the future of the majors and predicted theatrical motion pictures will become a niche market.
“They’re going for the gold,” said Lucas of the studios. “But that isn’t going to work forever. And as a result they’re getting narrower and narrower in their focus. People are going to get tired of it. They’re not going to know how to do anything else.”
Spielberg noted that because so many forms of entertainment are competing for attention, they would rather spend $250 million on a single film than make several personal, quirky projects.
“There’s eventually going to be a big meltdown,” Spielberg said. “There’s going to be an implosion where three or four or maybe even a half-dozen of these mega-budgeted movies go crashing into the ground and that’s going to change the paradigm again.”
SEE ALSO: Spielberg to Produce ‘Halo’ Series for Xbox
Lucas predicted that after that meltdown, “You’re going to end up with fewer theaters, bigger theaters with a lot of nice things. Going to the movies will cost 50 bucks or 100 or 150 bucks, like what Broadway costs today, or a football game. It’ll be an expensive thing. … (The movies) will sit in the theaters for a year, like a Broadway show does. That will be called the ‘movie’ business.”
“There’ll be big movies on a big screen, and it’ll cost them a lot of money. Everything else will be on a small screen. It’s almost that way now. ‘Lincoln’ and ‘Red Tails’ barely got into theaters. You’re talking about Steven Spielberg and George Lucas can’t get their movies into theaters.”
Both see “quirky” or more personal content migrating to streaming video-on-demand, where niche audiences can be aggregated. “What used to be the movie business, in which I include television and movies … will be Internet television,” said Lucas.
“The question will be: Do you want people to see it, or do you want people to see it on a big screen?” he added.
The longtime friends appeared on a panel on the future of entertainment at the grand opening of the Interactive Media building at the USC School of Cinematic Arts, along with Don Mattrick of Microsoft. Julia Boorstin of CNBC moderated.
But Mattrick took a back seat as the two old movie pros dominated the hour-long talk, teasing each other at times and agreeing at others. When Lucas complained about how hard it was to get “Lincoln” or “Red Tails” into theaters, Spielberg quipped, “I got more people into ‘Lincoln’ than you got into ‘Red Tails,’” drawing guffaws from the crowd.
Addressing the evolution of vidgames, Spielberg said so far, games have not been able to create the same empathy with onscreen characters that narrative forms have. Though gamers might empathize with characters in the cut scenes between game play, he said, “The second you get the controller something turns off in the heart, and it becomes a sport.” Lucas was more sanguine, saying the game industry can and will create empathetic characters, but it hasn’t so far because it’s been driven by hard-core gamers who enjoy onscreen violence.
“The big game of the next five years will be a game where you empathize very strongly with the characters and it’s aimed at women and girls,” Lucas said. “They like empathetic games. That will be a huge hit and as a result that will be the ‘Titanic’ of the game industry, where suddenly you’ve done an actual love story or something and everybody will be like ‘where did that come from?’ Because you’ve got actual relationships instead of shooting people.”
But Spielberg, looking farther ahead, said he thinks the real shift will come when game controllers are obsolete and games are controlled by Kinect-like devices that completely immerse the player in the story. “I believe need to get rid of the proscenium,” Spielberg said. “We’re never going to be totally immersive as long as we’re looking at a square, whether it’s a movie screen or whether it’s a computer screen. We’ve got to get rid of that and we’ve got to put the player inside the experience, where no matter where you look you’re surrounded by a three-dimensional experience. That’s the future.”
The most out-there suggestion for the future of entertainment came from Lucas, who sees brain implants within the relatively near future. He noted such implants are already being used to control artificial limbs; they just haven’t been used for entertainment yet.
“The next step is to be able to control your dreams,” he said. “You’ll just tap into a different part of your brain. You’re just going to put a hat on or plug into the computer and create your own world. … We’ll be able to do the dream thing 10, 15 years from now. It’s not some pie-in-the-sky thing.”
Asked by Boorstin what that might mean for the Entertainment Industry, he said: “You still have to tell stories. Some people will want to be in a game… and some people will want to have a story told to them. Those are two different things. But the content always stays the same. The content hasn’t changed in 10,000 years.”
In keeping with the transcontinental hunt of Gerry Lane (well played by Brad Pitt) for the cure to the spreading pandemic, “World War Z” was shot in various exotic locations, on land and in the sea.
Representing the Globe
“First of all it’s called ‘World War Z’ so it was critical that we represent the globe. I think the planet is evident to a greater number of people than ever before – you can click a button and see what’s going on virtually anywhere. So it’s harder and harder to fake that. Audiences are smart, they know what different cities around the world look like and there is a point where you can’t engage in trickery nor do I think you should. I think movies benefit from different locales and different cultures and settings and different moods and I think that comes across on the screen,” Gardner says.
“World War Z” opens in Philadelphia as full-scale zombie pandemonium ensues. Glasgow doubled for Philly and although they are literally worlds apart, the cities share similar architecture, some of which was augmented during post-production. To further transform the Scottish city, the production replaced native signs, traffic signals and cars with their American counterparts. Also, Glasgow offered an ideal layout for showing maximum mayhem.
“The city is arranged in a square which gave us more opportunity to see the havoc and panic when the zombies invade the city,” says location manager Michael Harm.
Glasgow was also particularly hospitable to the hundreds of extras and personnel required to approximate the start of the pandemic.
“When we were on the smaller streets in the beginning of the sequence, we had over 200 people to make the streets look full. As we moved into the square for the mayhem scenes, we bumped it up to 700 people. But what was really lucky was there was an old Bank of Scotland building that was completely gutted. That offered about 50,000 square feet where the background artists could stay in between shots. And we used its four floors for make-up, wardrobe and catering,” Harm says.
Veteran second unit director Simon Crane orchestrated much of the “World War Z” mayhem. “When we see the zombies for the first time, in Philadelphia, it goes from calm to 100% panic and action very quickly and Glasgow worked beautifully. Marc had a real passion for conveying the huge scale of the devastation and we tried to do that practically, in-camera, as much as possible. We approached the zombie attack like a pack of rabid dogs, running and taking people down. We were trying to bring across that fear and violence,” Crane says.
To accomplish this required carefully choreographed stunt work that began with a pre-visualized look at the action in the computer and culminated with, among other things, the sacrifice of several vehicles.
“We crashed over 150 different cars. We crashed the garbage truck and slammed Brad’s Volvo into an ambulance and various other things. It was big scale. At least 80% of the vehicles were written off,” Crane says. “Glasgow was great. We shut down blocks and blocks for controlled car crashes outside the main buildings. It was fantastic.”
Gardner notes that up until the arrival of the ‘World War Z’ production, Glasgow had not experienced the temporary influx of the army of people that populate a big, complicated movie – and, she says, the city could not have been more welcoming or accommodating.
“Glasgow was quite an operation. Even though they had not hosted a lot of big films, there was an unbelievable enthusiasm on the part of the city to not only have us but to try and make our jobs easier. The reception was just astonishing. To shoot the big opening zombie attack sequence, they shut down the main square of the city for us for over two weeks. And people rolled with it. They posted signs in their windows welcoming us. It was really terrific,” Gardner recalls.
Often the huge amount of extras and the associated personnel required to turn them into zombies became its own logistical circus.
“There were many, many thousands of extra man days on the film. We had big crowd scenes in Malta, playing for Jerusalem. There were big crowd scenes in Glasgow for Philadelphia. The airplane sequence had roughly 150 extras to fill the interior of the aircraft for five days of photography. And those scenes are even further complicated, because there were heavy zombie presences. That involves giant numbers of hair, make-up and wardrobe staff to achieve the look of what you’re trying to get. If you have 500 extras that need to look a certain way, that’s an awful lot of people required to get them ready. We were shooting one day with the full extra count and I remember coming on to the set and you literally couldn’t move because of the size of the crew that was there to get everyone ready. And then a couple hours later we sent the zombies away for a little break as we were going to do something else just with Brad and a few other people and it was like the set became barren. It was hilarious,” says producer Ian Bryce.
In keeping with the overall mantra of authenticity, the filmmaking team endeavored to ground the adrenalin-spiking zombie anarchy in reality. Gerry Lane is not a superhero but rather an astute, quick-witted, hyper-perceptive man. Crane had worked with Pitt several times before and they had a shorthand, in terms of how to accomplish the complicated action scenes.
“Brad had huge input into the strategy of how we would stage all the action and we always tried to keep it as real as possible. He’s a former U.N. worker, not a fighter. He’s a real person, a normal, everyday guy. So we tried to make everything as believable as possible. He’s very good at the action stuff and wanted to be as involved as possible, which of course also helped,” Crane says.
The Lane family finds temporary safety on an enormous aircraft carrier and, in fact, the British Navy vessel the Argus stood in for the American ship. Filming the arrival sequence was quite a feat, featuring actual helicopters, 500 extras, dozens of military vehicles and of course the huge, powerful and elegant aircraft carrier itself.
“It was great to work on a real aircraft carrier instead of on stage. The emotional intensity was so much more. It offered great scale and authenticity, which is what you want for this film, because on many levels, it is a war film. The world is at war with the zombies,” Forster says.
We are celebrating this month our tenth anniversary. There are over 21,000 reviews, interviews, and essays on www.EmanuelLevy.com, Cinema 24/7.
As part of our celebration, we are doing tributes to several directors, including Spaniard Pedro Almodovar and our very own Steven Soderbergh.
LOS ANGELES, CA June 3, 2013 – Fox Searchlight Pictures Presidents Stephen Gilula and Nancy Utley announced today that the company has acquired North American rights as well as select major territories to the black comedy crime tale DOM HEMINGWAY.
Written and directed by Richard Shepard, DOM HEMINGWAY stars Jude Law, Richard E. Grant, Demián Bechir and Emilia Clarke. The film was produced by Academy Award-winner Jeremy Thomas at Recorded Picture Company. The film is scheduled to be released in 2014.
“We were so attracted to this film, with its rich array of characters and sharp dialogue. Jude Law’s clever and outrageous performance as Dom is completely transformative, unlike anything you have seen him do before,” said Utley and Gilula.
“From the beginning Jeremy, Jude and I talked about Fox Searchlight distributing Dom Hemingway. They’re the best, and you only want the best for your baby. I’m over the moon and under the influence,” said Shepard.
“I’m so glad that my friends at Searchlight will be dancing with Dom, continuing the tradition of many movies as this is in the vein of Sexy Beast, which was in collaboration with Searchlight, so they are the perfect partners,” said Thomas.
Jude Law plays Dom Hemingway, a larger-than-life safecracker with a loose fuse who is funny, profane, and dangerous. After twelve years in prison, he sets off with his partner in crime Dickie (Richard E. Grant) looking to collect what he’s owed for keeping his mouth shut and protecting his boss Mr. Fontaine (Demián Bechir). After a near death experience, Dom tries to re-connect with his estranged daughter (Emilia Clarke), but is soon drawn back into the only world he knows, looking to settle the ultimate debt.
The deal was brokered by Fox Searchlight’s Executive Vice President of Worldwide Acquisitions Tony Safford and Senior Vice President of Business Affairs Megan O’Brien, with HanWay Films Managing Director Thorsten Schumacher and COO Jan Spielhoff on behalf of the filmmakers.
DC Entertainment and Warner plan a big birthday bash for his 75th anniversary.
Superman first appeared in the comic book Action Comics #1, on June 1938, and has since become an icon in films, TV shows, radio, videogames, publishing and merchandise.
The companies unveiled a new logo that will be used by Warner Bros. Pictures, Warner Bros. Television, Warner Bros. Animation, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and Warner Bros. Consumer Products as they roll out Superman-related promotions, products and initiatives rolling out throughout the year.
“Warner Bros. is privileged to be home to the global Superman brand, which has had an unparalleled impact on popular culture for 75 years,” said Kevin Tsujihara, CEO, Warner Bros. Entertainment. “We are proud to commemorate this milestone with exciting entertainment across the entire studio and across the globe, ensuring this enduring icon reaches new generations of audiences.”
Superman-themed efforts this year include:
■ Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel,” on June 14, that will serve as the main event in theaters this summer, and reboot the character on the bigscreen. Studio hopes the film will lead to sequels as well as spinoffs like “Justice League,” that will feature the character for years to come the way Christopher Nolan’s Batman pictures breathed new life into the Caped Crusader.
■ Snyder will direct and produce an animated short that chronicles the 75-year history of the character. WB will preview the short at San Diego Comic-Con Intl. in July.
■ The videogame “Injustice: Gods Among Us” was released in April and pits DC’s iconic superheroes, including the Man of Steel, against supervillains like Superman foe Lex Luthor.
■ In the fall, Warner Bros. Interactive will launch “Infinite Crisis,” an all-new multiplayer online battle arena game.
■ “Superman: Unbound,” a new animated original movie from DC Universe, was released May 7, and has Superman battle Brainiac.
■ “Man of Steel” and Superman products are on retail shelves now, timed with the release of the new film.
■ Cartoon Network’s “DC Nation” block will air new animated Superman-themed shorts, produced by Warner Bros. Animation.
■ DC Entertainment’s “We Can Be Heroes” giving campaign will focus on Superman in June, and offer up limited edition merchandise and experiences to excite fans.
■ And DC Entertainment will be the first to feature the new Superman logo on the upcoming “Superman Unchained” comicbook by artist Jim Lee and writer Scott Snyder, on sale Wednesday, June 12. Series centers on a mystery that is frustrating the hero in both the Superman and Clark Kent aspects of his identity ultimately revealing a brand-new villain.
“Superman is undeniably the greatest Super Hero in the world and likely the most influential comic book character of all time,” according to Diane Nelson, president, DC Entertainment. “In addition to being an enduring presence in pop culture for the last 75 years, he continues to be a commanding global icon. DC Entertainment and all of Warner Bros. look forward to celebrating this important, year-long anniversary for Superman.”
The Liberace biopicture, “Behind the Candelabra,” which wodrew 2.4 million viewers with its premiere telecast Sunday night, becoming the most-watched HBO Film original in nine years.
The picture, helmed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Michael Douglas and Matt Damon, also drew 1.1 million for its repeat later Sunday for a total of 3.5 million, according to Nielsen.
No HBO Film original has drawn a larger audience since “Something the Lord Made” in 2004.
Last year’s HBO Film originals included “Game Change,” which drew 2.12 million in its premiere, and “The Girl” (722,000).
Cannes Film Fes 2013–“Blue Is the Warmest Color,” Abdellatif Kechiche’s sexually explicit drama about a French teenage girl’s love affair with another woman, received the Palme d’Or at the 66th annual Cannes Film Festival on Sunday night.
In a historical decision, the Steven Spielberg-led jury opted not only to give the first Palme d’Or to a gay romantic drama, but to present the accolade jointly to three artists: Tunisian-born director Abdellatif Kechiche and French actresses Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux.
The Grand Prix went to “Inside Llewyn Davis,” Joel and Ethan Coen’s warmly received musical comedy-drama about a singer-guitarist from New York’s 1960s folk scene. It’s the eighth film the Coen brothers have had in competition at Cannes; they won the Palme d’Or for 1991′s “Barton Fink,” as well as directing prizes for “Barton Fink,” “Fargo” (1996) and “The Man Who Wasn’t There” (2001).
Dern drew the best actor kudo for his performance as an aging husband and father in Alexander Payne’s black-and-white road movie “Nebraska.”
In contrast with last year, when none of the five American films in competition won a prize, Spielberg’s jury spread the wealth around, honoring a range of films from Europe, North America and Asia.
With its 175-minute running time (the longest of any film in competition) and graphic lesbian sex scenes, “Blue Is the Warmest Color” dominated festival conversation following its first press screenings on Wednesday night and was swiftly acquired for Stateside distribution by IFC’s Sundance Selects.
This is the second year in a row that the festival’s top prize has gone to a French-language feature, as Austrian helmer’s Paris-set drama “Amour” won in 2012. It also represents a rare instance of a director winning Cannes’ top prize for his first film in competition. Kechiche’s previous two films, “The Secret of the Grain” (2007) and “Black Venus” (2010), played in competition at the Venice Film Festival (where “Grain” was a multiple prizewinner).
At a press conference following the ceremony, Spielberg described Kechiche’s film as “a great love story that made all of us feel privileged to be a fly on the wall, to see this story of deep love and deep heartbreak evolve from the beginning. The director didn’t put any constraints on the narrative. He let the scenes play in real life, and we were absolutely spellbound.”
While the presentation of international cinema’s highest honor to this particular film struck a topical note at a time when the gay-marriage debate continues to rage (France just legalized it last week), Spielberg rejected the idea that politics had influenced the jury’s decision. “As you know, the characters in this film do not get married,” he said. “Politics were never in the room with us.” He also said that the decision to honor Exarchopoulos and Seydoux alongside Kechiche was essential, noting that, “If the casting had been even 3% wrong, it wouldn’t have worked in the same way. All of us felt we needed to invite all three artists to the stage together.”
Spielberg added that while he expected the film to play well in the U.S., “I’m not sure it will be allowed to play in every state.”
The jury presented a united front backstage, as Spielberg noted that there had been no behind-the-scenes drama, and that he and his fellow jurors were able to come to a consensus on “at least three of the incredibly important choices.”
Juror Nicole Kidman noted that, given their hectic schedule, she asked her jurors to see certain films more than once. In addition to Spielberg and Kidman, the jury included directors Ang Lee, Cristian Mungiu, Lynne Ramsay and Naomi Kawase, and actors Christoph Waltz, Daniel Auteuil and Vidya Balan.
The evening’s biggest surprise was when Mexican director Amat Escalante received the directing nod for his third feature, “Heli.” A tough drama about a family torn apart by drug-related gang violence, the film screened on the first evening of the festival and generated discussion primarily for its attention-grabbing image of a man having his genitals set on fire.
Berenice Bejo took the actress award for her performance as a Parisian woman seeking a divorce from her Iranian husband in Asghar Farhadi’s “The Past.” The last time Bejo appeared in a Cannes competition entry was in 2011 with “The Artist,” for which she later received an Oscar nomination.
Two of the three Asian films in competition were singled out. The jury prize was awarded to “Like Father, Like Son,” Japanese helmer Hirokazu Kore-eda’s delicate drama about two families who discover their sons were swapped at birth, while Chinese writer-director Jia Zhangke was given the screenplay prize for “A Touch of Sin,” his four-part drama based on real-life episodes of violence in contempo China.
In another victory for an Asian film, the Camera d’Or jury, headed by Agnes Varda, presented its prize for best first feature to Singaporean helmer Anthony Chen’s Directors’ Fortnight entry “Ilo ilo.” Chen noted in his acceptance speech that his was the first picture from Singapore to receive an award in Cannes.
Despite having generated considerable buzz during the festival, Steven Soderbergh’s “Behind the Candelabra,” James Gray’s “The Immigrant” and Paolo Sorrentino’s “The Great Beauty” went home empty-handed.
Before Sunday’s ceremony, the Un Certain Regard jury, headed by Thomas Vinterberg, gave its top award to “The Missing Picture,” Cambodian helmer Rithy Panh’s documentary account of his childhood under the Pol Pot regime, and a jury prize to “Omar,” helmer Hany Abu-Assad’s drama about young Palestinian men driven to violence.
Ryan Coogler’s first feature, “Fruitvale Station,” received a Future prize, adding to its two big wins at Sundance, while a directing award was presented to Gallic helmer Alain Guiraudie for his gay-cruising thriller “Stranger by the Lake,” acquired during the festival by Strand Releasing. Finally, the Un Certain Regard jury handed a special A Certain Talent award to the ensemble cast of “La jaula de oro,” an immigration thriller from Mexico-based Spanish helmer Diego Quemada-Diaz.
The winner in the Directors’ Fortnight sidebar was “Me Myself and Mum,” Gallic actor-director Guillaume Gallienne’s comedy adapted from his own stage show. The pic won both the Art Cinema award and the Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers’ SACD prize, given to a French-language film. “The Selfish Giant,” British helmer Clio Barnard’s unconventional take on Oscar Wilde, received the Europa Cinemas Label for best European film.
The Critics’ Week yielded a double winner: “Salvo,” a thriller from Italian directors Fabio Grassadonia and Antonio Piazza, which won both the Grand Prix and the Visionary prize in the sidebar. A special mention went to Argentinian entry “The Owners,” helmed by Agustin Toscano and Ezequiel Radusky, while Canadian director Sebastien Pilote’s farming drama “Le Demantelement” took the SACD prize for best screenplay.
The Fipresci international critics jury sided with Spielberg’s jury, giving its top competition prize to “Blue Is the Warmest Color,” and also bestowed awards on Mohammad Rasoulof’s “Manuscripts Don’t Burn” (Un Certain Regard) and Jeremy Saulnier’s “Blue Ruin” (Directors’ Fortnight).
MAIN JURY PRIZES
Palme d’Or: “Blue Is the Warmest Color” (Abdellatif Kechiche, director; Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux, actresses; France-Belgium-Spain)
Grand Prix: “Inside Llewyn Davis” (Joel and Ethan Coen, U.S.)
Director: Amat Escalante, “Heli” (Mexico)
Jury prize: “Like Father, Like Son” (Hirokazu Kore-eda, Japan)
Actor: Bruce Dern, “Nebraska” (Alexander Payne, U.S.)
Actress: Berenice Bejo, “The Past” (Asghar Farhadi, France-Italy)
Screenplay: Jia Zhangke, “A Touch of Sin” (China)
UN CERTAIN REGARD JURY PRIZES
Main prize: “The Missing Picture” (Rithy Panh, Cambodia-France)
Jury prize: Hany Abu-Assad, “Omar” (Palestine)
Director: Alain Guiraudie, “Stranger by the Lake” (France)
Future prize: “Fruitvale Station” (Ryan Coogler, U.S.)
A Certain Talent prize: Ensemble cast of “La jaula de oro” (Diego Quemada-Diaz, Mexico-Spain)
OTHER JURY PRIZES
Camera d’Or: “Ilo ilo” (Anthony Chen, Singapore)
Directors’ Fortnight Art Cinema Award: “Me Myself and Mum” (Guillaume Gallienne, France)
Directors’ Fortnight Europa Cinemas Label: “The Selfish Giant” (Clio Barnard, U.K.)
Directors’ Fortnight SACD Prize: “Me Myself and Mum”
Critics’ Week Grand Prix: “Salvo” (Fabio Grassadonia, Antonio Piazza, Italy)
Critics’ Week Visionary Prize: “Salvo”
Critics’ Week Special Mention: “The Owners” (Agustin Toscano, Ezequiel Radusky, Argentina)
Critics’ Week SACD Prize for Screenplay: “Le Demantelement” (Sebastien Pilote, Canada)
Short Films Palme d’Or: “Safe” (Moon Byoung-gon, South Korea)
Ecumenical Jury Prize: “The Past” (Asghar Farhadi, France-Italy)
Competition: “Blue Is the Warmest Color” (Abdellatif Kechiche, France)
Un Certain Regard: “Manuscripts Don’t Burn” (Mohammad Rasoulof, Iran)
Directors’ Fortnight: “Blue Ruin” (Jeremy Saulnier, U.S.)
Cannes Film Fest 2013–Abdellatif Kechiche’s “Blue is the Warmest Color” received the ward from the Fipresci Federation of Film Critics as the best film in Cannes Festival’s Competition.
The recognition went to a lesbian-themed film, an emotional epic depicting over three hours a girl’s discovery of her sexuality and her multi-faceted love relationship with another woman over the space of years.
The two leads, Adele Exarchopoulos and Lea Seydoux, are also considered as front-runners for Cannes’ best actress prize.
Fipresci plaudits go to one outstanding film in Cannes Competition, another in Un Certain Regard and a third in either Directors’ Fortnight or Critics’ Week.
Fiprecci’s Un Certain Regard nod went to Iranian Mohammad Rasoulof’s “Manuscripts Don’t Burn.” Secretly shot in Iran, “Manuscript” turns on a former political prisoner who manages to write his memoirs about his time in jail despite being under state security surveillance. The plot echoes director Rasoulof’s own situation in Iran, where he is currently on bail, awaiting a one-year prison sentence for shooting without a permit in 2010.
Beyond its subject matter, Rasoulof said that he was very proud that critics had recognized the cinematographic merits of “Manuscripts.”
Directors’ Fortnight entry “Blue Ruin,” the second pic from Brooklyn-based Jeremy Saulnier (“Murder Party”) and a revenge thriller about a homeless man’s family’s murder, also received Fipresci recognition.
“It’s a humor-laced, action-packed film noir which sheds light on the gun craze and violence in contemporary America,” Directors’ Fortnight artistic director Eduoard Waintrop said.
“Blue Ruin” was acquired at Cannes by Radius/The Weinstein Co. in the first U.S. distribution buy anounced at Cannes festival.
Also announced Saturday, Cannes’ Ecumenical Jury awarded its main Prix to “The Past,” from Iran’s Asghar Farhardi who won an Academy Award for “A Separation.”
Anther of this year’s Cannes Competition favorites, and a companion piece to “A Separation,” “The Past” is a family melodrama, though this time set in Paris and starring Berenice Bejo (“The Artist”), in which a woman seeks the end to a marriage.
“The Past,” like “Separation,” is backed by France’s Memento Films whose Alexandre Mallet-Guy pointed out that “A Separation” also started out winning an Ecumenical prize. “I hope ‘The Past’ now follows ‘A Separation’s’ prize course,” he said Saturday in Cannes.
Italian actress Valeria Golino’s directorial debut “Miele” and Hirokazu Kore-eda’s Cannes Competition contender “Like Father, Like Son” both received commendations from the Ecumenical jury.