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Nicolas Winding Refn Will Deliver Cannes Masterclass on Working in Film and TV — Exclusive

The Cannes regular will speak about his new Amazon series "Too Old to Die Young," among other projects.

Nicolas Winding Refn

Nicolas Winding Refn

Karl Schoendorfer/REX/Shutterstock

The Cannes Film Festival will host a masterclass with Nicolas Winding Refn at its 2019 edition, IndieWire has learned. The filmmaker, a Cannes regular whose past three features have screened in the festival’s Competition section, will return to the Croisette with the first two episodes of his new Amazon crime series “Too Old to Die Young.” Additionally, Refn will speak at the festival about his experiences directing in both media.

Earlier this year, “Too Old to Die Young” star Miles Teller revealed that each of the series’ 10 episodes will run approximately 90 minutes. That feature length speaks to the pliable running time standards that some shows have adopted on streaming platforms. “It will be very interesting to talk with Nicolas Winding Refn,” Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux said in a phone interview. “He will give a masterclass about what it is to be a filmmaker today doing feature films for the cinema, doing series, and doing commercials.”

Fremaux also singled out Refn’s other foray into the streaming world, byNWR.com, which allows users to stream restored cult movies for free. “I can’t wait to hear him talk about that,” Fremaux said. “It’s a really passionate time.”

Miles Teller in Too Old to Die Young

“Too Old to Die Young”


The decision by the festival to screen series from one its regular auteur filmmakers is the latest development in the gradual appearance of television in the festival lineup, which started two years ago, when episodes from David Lynch’s latest season of “Twin Peaks” as well as the entire second season of Jane Campion’s “Top of the Lake” screened out of competition at the festival.

Meanwhile, Netflix continues to be absent at the festival, following rules last year that required Cannes films in Competition to have a theatrical release in France. (Technically, Netflix could submit its own series for consideration at Cannes just like Amazon.) Fremaux reiterated that he maintains a cordial relationship with Netflix. “They have a business model, they are really focused on that, and I respect that,” he said, noting that several of the streaming platforms’ most anticipated titles — including Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman” — weren’t ready to premiere in Cannes anyway.

“Maybe Netflix doesn’t have anything ready for Competition,” Fremaux said, “but we’ll see about next year.”

The 2019 Cannes Film Festival runs May 14 – 25.

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