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Toronto, Venice and Locarno: 2 + 20 Confirmed Titles For Locarno

Toronto, Venice and Locarno: 2 + 20 Confirmed Titles For Locarno

Always on the lookout for the “Tipped For” Titles, now we have one confirmed title and one more “Tipped For”:

Toronto IFF has announced its opening film, Score: A Hockey Musical, directed by Michael McGowan, starring Olivia Newton-John, Stephen McHattie, John Pyper-Ferguson about a teenage hockey player who becomes a national sensation.. How Toronto is that! “I can’t think of a better way to kick off our 35th anniversary festival than with Score: A Hockey Musical,” said Cameron Bailey, co-director of the Toronto International Film Festival. “It continues our tradition of launching the very best in Canadian filmmaking — although in 35 years this is our first musical romance about hockey.” Mongrel Media has Canadian rights.

And Venice IFF is rumored to be showing Even the Rain, a twist on Christopher Columbus, the Italian who discovered America…How Venice is that! Written by Paul Laverty, Ken Loach’s writer of choice, starring Gael Garcia Bernal and directed by Iciar Bollain, ♀ the Spanish woman director of Take My Eyes (Te doy mis ojos), this is a co-production between Bolivia and Spain’s Moreno Films (The Monk, A Room in Rome). Wild Bunch is handling international sales. See more about this film on WB’s website.

Gael Garcial Bernal

Locarno‘s first year with Olivier Pere heading it has chosen 20 titles for its International Competition. Martin Barney of Screen notes that 4 of these have German involvement, proving its active participation in co-production which is now fueling world production. These include Benedek Fliegauf’s first English language film Womb (ISA: The Match Factory), Pia Marais’ ♀ second feature At Ellen’s Age (had been tipped for Cannes) (ISA: The Match Factory), and Serbian filmmaker Oleg Novkovic’s White White World to the international premiere of Bruce LaBruce’s L.A. Zombie with porn star Francois Sagat in the lead. (LaBruce’s film is a co-production between Germany, USA and France.)

Two first features prove the current Romanian film wave continues: Marian Crisan’s Morgen and Bogdan George Apetri’s Periferic. The Female Factor is well represented by the home nation Switzerland’s Stephanie Chuat ♀ and Veronique Reymond’s ♀ first feature La Petite Chambre and Katalin Gödrös’ ♀ Songs Of Love And Hate. North America is represented by the international premiere of U.S. director Aaron Katz’s Cold Weather and the world premiere of Canadian Denis Cote’s Curling. Pere notes the commonality of all the various festival sections is the youthfulness of the filmmakers. Details about this year’s programme including the various sidebars and special events can be found at The Female Factor: Out of 20 films 4 are by women = 20%, better than average but still a long way from parity!

As festivals are now also hosting more side events, primarily market events like Locarno’s co-production event, they are now also entering the field of training and their training pilot project is Locarno Summer Academy (August 5-11), which aims to foster an exchange of knowledge between the generations “and thus sustain the flow of new blood into film, in Switzerland and abroad. The initiative, in collaboration with Lugano’s Swiss Italian University Film Summer School, will be open to 20 young professionals or film students from around the world, who will be benefit from the knowhow and experience of such speakers as documentary filmmaker Christian Frei, producer Peter Rommel, casting director Beatrice Krüger of e-Talenta Casting and Georges Goldenstern of Cannes’ Cinefondation.

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