Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Steve Carell Redefined His Career By Surprising Everyone in 'Foxcatcher' Steve Carell Redefined His Career By Surprising Everyone in 'Foxcatcher' Watch: Ellar Coltrane on the 'Brutal' Experience of Watching 'Boyhood' After Living It Watch: Ellar Coltrane on the 'Brutal' Experience of Watching 'Boyhood' After Living It Mortem Tyldum Explains Why Alan Turing Was the Right Subject For His First English-Language Film Mortem Tyldum Explains Why Alan Turing Was the Right Subject For His First English-Language Film Why Richard Linklater’s ‘Boyhood’ is a Great, Unexpected Awards Season Frontrunner Why Richard Linklater’s ‘Boyhood’ is a Great, Unexpected Awards Season Frontrunner Watch: Patricia Arquette on Stripping Away Ego to Get to the Heart of 'Boyhood' 
Watch: Patricia Arquette on Stripping Away Ego to Get to the Heart of 'Boyhood' 'Whiplash' Breakout Miles Teller Has Officially Arrived 'Whiplash' Breakout Miles Teller Has Officially Arrived Michael Keaton Dug Deep to Deliver the Best Performance of His Career in 'Birdman' Michael Keaton Dug Deep to Deliver the Best Performance of His Career in 'Birdman' Mark Ruffalo Explains Why Dave Schultz Was One of the Most Complex Characters He's Ever Played Mark Ruffalo Explains Why Dave Schultz Was One of the Most Complex Characters He's Ever Played Keira Knightley on 'The Imitation Game' and Why Awards Matter Keira Knightley on 'The Imitation Game' and Why Awards Matter Katherine Waterston On the Good and Bad of Working With Paul Thomas Anderson Katherine Waterston On the Good and Bad of Working With Paul Thomas Anderson Emma Stone Proved She Can Do It All in 2014 Emma Stone Proved She Can Do It All in 2014 Jon Stewart is Off to a Strong Start with Directorial Debut 'Rosewater' Jon Stewart is Off to a Strong Start with Directorial Debut 'Rosewater' Awards Spotlight: Don't Be Surprised When J.K. Simmons Takes Home Oscar Awards Spotlight: Don't Be Surprised When J.K. Simmons Takes Home Oscar Jessica Chastain Proved She's a Total Chameleon in 2014 Jessica Chastain Proved She's a Total Chameleon in 2014 Laura Poitras on 'CITIZENFOUR,' The Most Dangerous Work She's Ever Done Laura Poitras on 'CITIZENFOUR,' The Most Dangerous Work She's Ever Done Jake Gyllenhaal On Doing Very Bad Things in 'Nightcrawler' Jake Gyllenhaal On Doing Very Bad Things in 'Nightcrawler' Channing Tatum Explains Why It Took Him Eight Years to Have the ‘Balls’ for ‘Foxcatcher’ Channing Tatum Explains Why It Took Him Eight Years to Have the ‘Balls’ for ‘Foxcatcher’ Ethan Hawke Didn't Know That Richard Linklater Would Bring 'Boyhood' Home So Well Ethan Hawke Didn't Know That Richard Linklater Would Bring 'Boyhood' Home So Well Jack O'Connell Explains What It’s Like to Work For Angelina Jolie Jack O'Connell Explains What It’s Like to Work For Angelina Jolie 'Red Army' Director Gabe Polsky Reveals the Story of Soviet Hockey 'Red Army' Director Gabe Polsky Reveals the Story of Soviet Hockey How Felicity Jones is Getting Noticed This Awards Season How Felicity Jones is Getting Noticed This Awards Season Edward Norton Goes Full-Blown For Alejandro González Iñárritu in 'Birdman' Edward Norton Goes Full-Blown For Alejandro González Iñárritu in 'Birdman' How Eddie Redmayne Transformed His Body and Mind to Become Stephen Hawking How Eddie Redmayne Transformed His Body and Mind to Become Stephen Hawking Oscar Isaac Explains How 'A Most Violent Year' Fits With His Other Roles Oscar Isaac Explains How 'A Most Violent Year' Fits With His Other Roles Timothy Spall Almost Went Mad to Play 'Mr. Turner' For Mike Leigh Timothy Spall Almost Went Mad to Play 'Mr. Turner' For Mike Leigh 'Gone Girl' Composer Atticus Ross: How to Write a Score Without Seeing the Film 'Gone Girl' Composer Atticus Ross: How to Write a Score Without Seeing the Film How to Play James Brown, By Chadwick Boseman: Study the Man, Listen to Drake How to Play James Brown, By Chadwick Boseman: Study the Man, Listen to Drake Chris Rock on Why Making 'Top Five' Was a No-Brainer Chris Rock on Why Making 'Top Five' Was a No-Brainer Steve James and Chaz Ebert Tackled 'Life Itself' Steve James and Chaz Ebert Tackled 'Life Itself' Bennett Miller Explains Why He Had to Make 'Foxcatcher' Bennett Miller Explains Why He Had to Make 'Foxcatcher' How Do You Roll Six Movies Into One? 'Wild Tales' Director Damian Szifron Explains How Do You Roll Six Movies Into One? 'Wild Tales' Director Damian Szifron Explains How Rosario Dawson Stole the Show From Chris Rock in 'Top Five' How Rosario Dawson Stole the Show From Chris Rock in 'Top Five' Alan Hicks: From Drummer-Surfer to Oscar-Shortlist Filmmaker Alan Hicks: From Drummer-Surfer to Oscar-Shortlist Filmmaker Alejandro González Iñárritu: 'Birdman' Could Have Been 'so wrong' Alejandro González Iñárritu: 'Birdman' Could Have Been 'so wrong' Amir Bar-Lev Likes to Make People a Little Uncomfortable Amir Bar-Lev Likes to Make People a Little Uncomfortable

Cannes: Why Directors Fortnight Didn't Decide On Its Lineup Until the Last Second

Photo of Eric Kohn By Eric Kohn | Indiewire May 15, 2013 at 1:12PM

The Cannes Festival's official competition may garner more attention, but the Directors Fortnight provides a hip alternative. With just 21 features, Fortnight offers a leaner take on the latest noteworthy cinema from around the world, but that doesn't make artistic director Édouard Waintrop's job any easier. On the brink of his second year running the festival, which opens Thursday with the premiere of Ari Folman's "The Congress," Waintrop sat down with Indiewire to explain this year's selection. Many decisions were made at the last minute. While Waintroup singled out Marcel Ophuls' diary film "A Voyager" as the first movie they chose, many films weren't selected until moments before the final announcement of the lineup was made. "We didn't know the flavor of the year until a week before we announced it," he said. "I don't know why." He rejected the possibility that the selection of the main lineup at Cannes limited his decision. "We weren't really troubled by their choices," he said. "We got our movies really late and some of the movies I liked the most I saw during that last week." These included two French titles in the lineup, Serge Bozon's "Tip Top" and Thierry de Peretti's "Les Apaches." His relationship with the main Cannes Film Festival has improved. In fact, during his interview with Indiewire, Waintrop received a call on his cell phone from Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux. The conversation sounded pleasant enough. "It's easier now because he's really content with his choices," Waintrop said. "He took the movies he wanted to take and has given us the space to be what we are. Unlike last year, we had no temptation to compete with them." The truth is obviously more complicated: "The Congress," for instance, was certainly a movie considered for Cannes' competition. "OK," Waintrop conceded, "but this movie is so strong and new, which is a flag for us. For the others, Thierry has picked the best names and movies, and we've tried to find the best movies by going in other directions." Why so many French films? "In the beginning, I didn't want so many French films," Waintrop explained. (There are four.) "But they were so different, one movie to another -- not only in terms of being French movies -- but we have three French comedies. But the same person might not laugh during all of them because they're very different." Of all the Sundance movies available, why take two genre films? Last year, the only Sundance movie was "Room 237." This year, Waintrop selected Sebastian Silva's eerie Michael Cera vehicle "Magic Magic" and Jim Mickle's cannibal drama "We Are What We Are." Waintrop said he hopes to bring new context to the movies. "Both were both shown in the midnight section at Sundance," he said. "I thought that 'Magic Magic' was not a proper midnight film, because people were probably expecting something very scary and it wasn't. I think for European audiences, and especially French ones, it's a movie to be shown here." In the case of MIckle's movie, "I'd seen his previous film "Stake Land" and was struck by the progress he had made in two or three years. I think he's going to become a master horror filmmaker. I wanted to present this to a French audience." The festival isn't exclusively devoted to newcomers, but it helps if the work feels fresh. "We look for new names and the best names of the future," he said, pointing out that there are nine first-time filmmakers at Fortnight eligible for the Camera d'Or. "We're not obsessed with first-time filmmakers because that's not our job. That's what Critics Week does. But in terms of quality, we were seduced by many first movies." That being said, there are two directors in their eighties whose work will screen this year. Waintrop felt their presence was justified. "Even Alejandro Jodorworsky and Marcel Ophuls, while being very established, are also outsiders," he said. Distribution deals matter, but they're not the main goal for the festival. "We care but we're not looking for the industry," he said. "We speak with them, but we have no time to help them during the festival. Sometimes they call and we tell them about our movies." For example, "Les Apaches" didn't have a distributor when the festival selected it, but three days later it landed one. Waintrop also singled out Anurag Kashyap's "Ugly," which follows the director's five-hour action epic "Gangs of Wasseypur," a Fortnight hit last year, as a movie with major sales potential. A number of movies have potential to generate strong audience reactions. "I don't sure which one, but I'm sure one of the French comedies will be a crowdpleaser," Waintrop said. He also pointed to the sci-fi movie "Last Days on Mars," a personal favorite. "I've seen twice," he said. "It is extremely brilliantly directed. It's like a screwball comedy on Mars. In the first part, the dialogue is very punchy, as it's the story of a bunch of people who spend six months on Mars and get bored with each other. Then it starts to be a real horror movie after 30 minutes."Still, there are definitely movies in the main selection of the festival he really enjoyed. "In Un Certain Regard, I loved the new Hany Abu-Assad film, 'Omar,'" he said. "In competition, there are a lot of movies that I liked. Nicolas Winding Refn's 'Only God Forgives' is really good. Francois Ozon's 'Young and Beautiful' is very surprising."
0
"We Are What We Are."
"We Are What We Are."

The Cannes Festival's official competition may garner more attention, but the Directors Fortnight provides a hip alternative. With just 21 features, Fortnight offers a leaner take on the latest noteworthy cinema from around the world, but that doesn't make artistic director Édouard Waintrop's job any easier. On the brink of his second year running the festival, which opens Thursday with the premiere of Ari Folman's "The Congress," Waintrop sat down with Indiewire to explain this year's selection.

Many decisions were made at the last minute. While Waintroup singled out Marcel Ophuls' diary film "A Voyager" as the first movie they chose, many films weren't selected until moments before the final announcement of the lineup was made. "We didn't know the flavor of the year until a week before we announced it," he said. "I don't know why." He rejected the possibility that the selection of the main lineup at Cannes limited his decision. "We weren't really troubled by their choices," he said. "We got our movies really late and some of the movies I liked the most I saw during that last week." These included two French titles in the lineup, Serge Bozon's "Tip Top" and Thierry de Peretti's "Les Apaches."

His relationship with the main Cannes Film Festival has improved. In fact, during his interview with Indiewire, Waintrop received a call on his cell phone from Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux. The conversation sounded pleasant enough. "It's easier now because he's really content with his choices," Waintrop said. "He took the movies he wanted to take and has given us the space to be what we are. Unlike last year, we had no temptation to compete with them." The truth is obviously more complicated: "The Congress," for instance, was certainly a movie considered for Cannes' competition. "OK," Waintrop conceded, "but this movie is so strong and new, which is a flag for us. For the others, Thierry has picked the best names and movies, and we've tried to find the best movies by going in other directions." 

Why so many French films? "In the beginning, I didn't want so many French films," Waintrop explained. (There are four.) "But they were so different, one movie to another -- not only in terms of being French movies -- but we have three French comedies. But the same person might not laugh during all of them because they're very different."

Of all the Sundance movies available, why take two genre films? Last year, the only Sundance movie was "Room 237." This year, Waintrop selected Sebastian Silva's eerie Michael Cera vehicle "Magic Magic" and Jim Mickle's cannibal drama "We Are What We Are." Waintrop said he hopes to bring new context to the movies. "Both were both shown in the midnight section at Sundance," he said. "I thought that 'Magic Magic' was not a proper midnight film, because people were probably expecting something very scary and it wasn't. I think for European audiences, and especially French ones, it's a movie to be shown here." In the case of MIckle's movie, "I'd seen his previous film "Stake Land" and was struck by the progress he had made in two or three years. I think he's going to become a master horror filmmaker. I wanted to present this to a French audience."

The festival isn't exclusively devoted to newcomers, but it helps if the work feels fresh. "We look for new names and the best names of the future," he said, pointing out that there are nine first-time filmmakers at Fortnight eligible for the Camera d'Or. "We're not obsessed with first-time filmmakers because that's not our job. That's what Critics Week does. But in terms of quality, we were seduced by many first movies." That being said, there are two directors in their eighties whose work will screen this year. Waintrop felt their presence was justified. "Even Alejandro Jodorworsky and Marcel Ophuls, while being very established, are also outsiders," he said.

Distribution deals matter, but they're not the main goal for the festival. "We care but we're not looking for the industry," he said. "We speak with them, but we have no time to help them during the festival. Sometimes they call and we tell them about our movies." For example, "Les Apaches" didn't have a distributor when the festival selected it, but three days later it landed one. Waintrop also singled out Anurag Kashyap's "Ugly," which follows the director's five-hour action epic "Gangs of Wasseypur," a Fortnight hit last year, as a movie with major sales potential. 

A number of movies have potential to generate strong audience reactions. "I don't sure which one, but I'm sure one of the French comedies will be a crowdpleaser," Waintrop said. He also pointed to the sci-fi movie "Last Days on Mars," a personal favorite. "I've seen twice," he said. "It is extremely brilliantly directed. It's like a screwball comedy on Mars. In the first part, the dialogue is very punchy, as it's the story of a bunch of people who spend six months on Mars and get bored with each other. Then it starts to be a real horror movie after 30 minutes."

Still, there are definitely movies in the main selection of the festival he really enjoyed. "In Un Certain Regard, I loved the new Hany Abu-Assad film, 'Omar,'" he said. "In competition, there are a lot of movies that I liked. Nicolas Winding Refn's 'Only God Forgives' is really good. Francois Ozon's 'Young and Beautiful' is very surprising."


 


This article is related to: News, Festivals, Edouard Waintrop, Cannes Directors' Fortnight, Cannes Film Festival, The Congress






Check out Indiewire on LockerDome on LockerDome



Awards Season Spotlight

Contender Conversations

Indiewire celebrates the best and brightest from Independent film, Hollywood, and foreign cinema.

More