My penultimate film watching day in Cannes was notable for two things: I caught a brief glimpse of Marion Cotillard and Zoe Saldana as they arrived for the press conference for their new film, Blood Ties, which is screening out of competition. From what I could tell, both were wearing great dresses, which is the least you’d expect, I guess. The other notable thing was I saw a man walking around with two small pigs on leads. He was accompanied by another man who was singing a song on guitar that seemed to be called ‘I Love My Pig’. I’d like to say this was unusual but after five days in Cannes, it isn’t.
The first weekend of Cannes is over and my celebrity spots have been off the scale, including Harvey Weinstein, a Thai princess, Olga Kurylenko and Sanjay from Eastenders, all within a few hours on Saturday evening. I’ve also seen some striking films, the best of which is Sofia Coppola’s The Bling Ring.
Out on 5 July, it tells the true story of a group of fame obsessed teens in LA who take to robbing celebrities houses. Their subsequent notoriety almost provides them with the kind of fame they crave. Starring Emma Watson and a host of newcomers, it’s funny, inventive and bitingly relevant. It also features a number of amusing celebrity cameos. With a host of upmarket fashion brands pilfered by the group, perhaps it’s a great opportunity to get some on screen? It would also make a great double bill with April’s Spring Breakers.
The talk today has been not so much about films but global warming. Last year, Cannes was unusually wet. Queuing outside for screenings wasn’t pleasant and screening rooms eventually smelled vaguely of wet dog. Maybe it wasn’t so unusual though as two days in to Cannes 2013 and it has rained almost constantly and the forecast suggests it’s not letting up any time soon.
Queuing for over an hour in the rain isn’t bad though when you finally take your seat at the start of the film but two bouts of queuing today were sadly fruitless as the hottest ticket so far, Sofia Coppola’s The Bling Ring proved just too popular. There’s still time to catch it later in the festival but I’m feeling slightly left out of conversations about the new buzz film.
You only need to look at the jury for the 66th Cannes Film Festival too see it remains the world’s premiere film festival. It’s like a particularly starry episode of Stella Street, with the most famous of all film directors, Steven Spielberg chairing a jury that also features Nicole Kidman and recent Oscar winners, Ang Lee (Life of Pi) and Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained).
The film selection is equally star-studded, with Baz Luhrmann’s lavish The Great Gatsby (opening today in the UK) kicking off proceedings yesterday and new offerings featuring numerous stars including Ryan Gosling, Justin Timberlake and Emma Watson in various strands of competition.
Smart brands will find plenty of big films in the coming months to associate themselves with, Tom Linay writes.
Highlights included UK premières for Sundance’s 2013 US Grand Jury Prize: Documentary winner, Blood Brother, and Lake Bell’s directorial debut and the winner of a screen-writing award, In A World. There were also music performances, workshops and Q&As providing a Millennium Dome-shaped Mecca for film lovers.
Every year, the San Francisco International Film Festival invites a well-known public figure to talk about the intersecting worlds of contemporary cinema and visual arts, culture and society, images and ideas. Past speakers have included Jonathan Lethem, Walter Murch, and Brad Bird. This year, Steven Soderbergh (Oceans Eleven and Magic Mike) took the stage.
Speaking about cinema versus movies, he compared the relationship to auteurs versus studios. He told the audience that art will always be a human need, as humans have always needed to tell stories.
DCM’S resident films specialist, Tom Linay, takes a look ahead in the release schedule and guides us through some of the upcoming romantic movies.
There’s also a distinctly romantic feel to May and June with an all-star romantic comedy released and three distinctive art-house titles that promise to make a notable splash with an upmarket female audience.
On 29 May, The Big Wedding unleashes its all-star ensemble on an affluent, female audience. The cast has all bases covered with mainstay stars Robert De Niro, Diane Keaton and Susan Sarandon and emerging talents such as Amanda Seyfried and Katherine Heigl.
Oz: The Great And Powerful 3D dominated the box office this weekend with a fantastic debut of £3.7m, the third highest opening of the year so far. Compare this to the opening weekend of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory back in 2005 (£7.9m), not quite as impressive perhaps, but the thing to bear in mind here is that title released at the height of the summer holidays. Oz will be on release over the upcoming Easter break, giving it a chance to catch up with Charlie’s final box office taking of £37.2m.
In the second slot of the top five, Steven Soderbergh’s Side Effects began its run with a positive start, clocking up £905k. Soderbergh’s last thriller, Haywire, debuted with £864k in 2011.
Third place was taken by Disney’s Wreck-It Ralph 3D, with £745k, bringing its cume up to £21.4m. This is now within a hairs breadth of Brave’s £21.5m final cume, expect this to be exceeded within the next week.
This April is notable for two things that are great for cinema admissions: the bulk of the Easter school holidays and later in the month, the start of the summer blockbuster season. It may not feel like summer in late April but the first of the year’s big superhero films, Iron Man 3 3D is released on April 26 and after that the tent-pole releases come thick and fast.