“Nero Fiddled” (dir. Woody Allen)
Cast: Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Allen, Ellen Page, Penelope Cruz, Robert Begnini, Alison Pill, Greta Gerwig, Judy Davis
Yes, France loves Woody and Woody loves France. However, with this movie being an Italian set tale featuring the country’s beloved Roberto Benigni, a Venice premiere is far more fitting. If it bowed anywhere else, it would practically be a scandal.
"Dans La Maison" (dir. Francois Ozon)
Cast: Fabrice Luchini, Emmanuelle Seigner, Kristin Scott-Thomas
Even though he's a native hero, lensing on this one only began late last year and Ozon was recently sidetracked by jury duty at this year's Berlin Film Festival. Could he knock this out in a record amount of time? Yeah, sure, anything is possible but our guess is that this comedic thriller will instead make a fall festival appearance.
“Song For Marion” (dir. Paul Andrew Williams)
Cast: Terrence Stamp, Vanessa Redgrave, Gemma Arteton
Though The Weinstein Company picked up the Brit film last fall and it has all the trappings of serious Oscar bait (grumpy old man becomes involved with his wife’s choir after she gets stricken with cancer) we’d be surprised if they rolled it out this early. “The Artist” -- being a black-and-white silent film with no major stars -- needed that early Cannes love and push, but this is a different animal, a film strictly in the crowdpleaser mode that seems far more suited to a Telluride or TIFF premiere where audience reaction and buzz will much more helpful for this film’s inevitable Oscar campaign. This populist pic would be an odd fit for Cannes and we don’t see it being included in the lineup.
“The Congress” (dir. Ari Folman)
Cast: Robin Wright, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Paul Giamatti, Danny Huston
This one has come up in a few conversations, but it’s not going to make it. The ambitious film that is blending live action and animation has been through an intense production that is still on going and the director himself revealed in December that, “The movie should be done by January 2013." So maybe next year.