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2016 Cannes Film Festival: What You Need To Know About These 6 Buzzy New Titles

2016 Cannes Film Festival: What You Need To Know About These 6 Buzzy New Titles

All this week, Indiewire will be rolling out our annual Cannes Film Festival Preview, including just about everything you need to know about the festival’s offerings, from the talent behind their creation, to why it’s at Cannes and what we can expect from the final product. Consider these your Cannes cheat sheets, packed with the kind of information and insight you can’t get anywhere else. Check back every day this week to learn more about the films that are poised to make this year’s festival one to remember. 

READ MORE: Indiewire’s Complete 2016 Cannes Film Festival Preview

“The BFG”


Who Made It?
A filmmaker you’ve probably heard of, one Mr. Steven Spielberg, who served as Cannes’ Jury President in 2013.

Why It Might Be Great: Based on Roald Dahl’s beloved classic book, “The BFG” marks Spielberg’s first live-action 3D film. The movie stars recent Oscar-winner Mark Rylance as the Big Friendly Giant, of the magical land Giant Country, with British actress Rebecca Hall in the lead role of Mary. “Saturday Night Live” alum Bill Hader and New Zealand talent Jemaine Clement, of “Flight of the Conchords” and “What We Do in the Shadows” fame, round out the cast.

What’s It Doing at Cannes? The fantasy movie is one of four films screening out of competition at Cannes, where Spielberg famously premiered “E.T.” in 1982 and returned with “The Color Purple” in 1986.

When Can I See It? The film will hit U.S. theaters on July 1. -Graham Winfrey

“Money Monster”

Who Made It? The supremely talented and Academy Award-winning actress-turned-director Jodie Foster is at the helm of this suspenseful drama. On top of being fluent in French, Foster is a Cannes favorite and is frequently showcasing her work at the festival.

Why It Might Be Great: With a stellar cast including George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Jack O’Connell (“’71” breakout) and Dominic West, “Money Monster” has set itself up to be one of the more star-studded films on the Croisette.

What’s It Doing at Cannes? Knowing Foster’s intimate relationship with Cannes, it’s likely comes from how long she’s been a regular participant of the prestigious film festival since her teenage years time working on “Taxi Driver.” It’s no surprise that Foster’s newest flick is premiering at Cannes.

When Can I See It? Fans are in luck, as the film will open to wide release in the U.S. a day after the Cannes premiere on May 12. The film is being distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment. -Riyad Mamedyarov

“The Nice Guys”


Who Made It? Shane Black, the “Lethal Weapon” scribe and the writer/director behind “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” and “Iron Man 3.”

Why It Might Be Great: Three words: Ryan. Gosling’s. Wardrobe.

What’s It Doing at Cannes? (See above.) But really, this film lives in the intersection of star power and storytelling talent that’s Cannes’ out-of-competition sweet spot. Stars Gosling and Crowe get the chance to walk the all-consuming red carpet and the film gets a captive audience to generate the word-of-mouth train before it bows stateside. With the talent involved and the concept of box-office draw that’s not beholden to a pre-existing property? We’re hopeful.

When Can I See It? Wear your best wide-collared dress shirt to the theater when Warner Bros. has this in wide release on May 20. -Steve Greene

“Gimme Danger”

Who Made It? Jim Jarmusch, whose Adam Driver-led drama “Paterson” is also playing in the festival’s competition section. 

Why It Might Be Great: Named after a 1973 song by the Stooges, Jarmusch’s second feature documentary centers on the band’s frontman Iggy Pop, considered by many to be the godfather of punk rock. Jarmusch first announced his plans to direct the film back in 2010. His other feature-length documentary “Year of the Horse” (1997) also had a musician at its center, the legendary rocker Neil Young and his band Crazy Horse, which Jarmusch followed during the group’s 1996 concert tour.

What’s It Doing at Cannes? Jarmusch’s inclusion at Cannes has become something of a foregone conclusion when the director is premiering a new film. His most recent movie to screen at the festival, the vampire film “Only Lovers Left Alive,” won the Cannes Soundtrack Award and was nominated for the Palme d’Or in 2014. Amazon owns the rights to the “Gimme Danger,” which is playing as a part of the festival’s Midnight Screening section.

When Can I See It? U.S. audiences will likely be able to see the film later this year. -GW

“The Last Days of Louis XIV”

Who Made It? Catalonian filmmaker Albert Serra, who tends to make wry, experimental historical dramas, from the biblically-empowered “Birdsong” to “The Story of My Death,” a dual ode to Casanova and Dracula. 
Why It Might Be Great: This peculiar take on French royalty stars iconic French actor Jean-Pierre Leaud, which is in itself a major step forward in profile for Serra; expect a strange, meditative look at the legendary French king in his final days — the kind of edgy riff on history that at Cannes is bound to divide audiences in all kinds of exciting ways. 
What’s It Doing at Cannes? Given a special screening slot, the film likely found its way into the lineup due to Leaud’s profile rather than Serra’s, though the filmmaker’s offbeat style has steadily made him an intriguing fixture on the international festival circuit. It was only a matter of time before he received this level of exposure. 
When Can I See It? Hard to say. While Leaud is a natural draw for arthouse audiences, the movie might be deemed a bit too weird for many buyers. Expect it to generate some noise among French cinema’s most devout followers. -Eric Kohn

“From the Diary of a Wedding Photographer”

Who Made It? Israeli director Nadav Lapid, whose previous film, “The Kindergarten Teacher,” received a lot of critical attention after its premiere at last year’s festival.

Why It Might Be Great: Not too much is known about “From the Diary of a Wedding Photographer,” except that it’s a short that will receive a special screening.

What’s It Doing at Cannes? After the success of “The Kindergarten Teacher,” it’s only natural that Lapid should return.

When Can I See It? It is unlikely that “From the Diary of a Wedding Photographer” will have its U.S. rights acquired by a distribution company, since shorts are not usually featured in American cinemas. However, there might be special screenings in various indie film centers around the country. -Kristen Santer

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