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Cannes Update: Fortnight, Critics Week, Carlos, Tree of Life

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood April 20, 2010 at 8:09AM

The Cannes Film Festival is still in motion.
Thompson on Hollywood

The Cannes Film Festival is still in motion.

At the opening press conference, Thierry Fremaux admitted that there would be additions. A festival has to leave its options open. Fremaux wooed Terrence Malick to bring The Tree of Life to the fest, and I hear he loved the version of the film he screened, but finally all the lengthy negotiations did not pay off. There are reports of a secret screening of the film in Austin, and the 70 mm IMAX stuff still needs effects tweaks. Sean Penn and Brad Pitt will have to grace some other red carpet gala in Venice, New York or Toronto.

Thompson on Hollywood

So now Fremaux is confirming some of the projects waiting in the wings, like Olivier Assayas's lengthy Carlos, based on Carlos the Jackal, which is screening out-of-competition (Cannes delayed the announcement due to a union question about a TV premiere going into the fest), and Boxing Gym, the latest doc from Frederik Wiseman, a special screening.

Still to be slotted? Possibly films from Andrucha Waddington (Lope), Susanne Bier (The Revenge), Francois Ozon (Potiche), Bertrand Blier (The Sound of Ice Cubes), Guillaume Canet (Little White Lies), Bela Tarr (The Turin Horse) or Kornel Mundruczo (The Frankenstein Project). And what has become of Vincent "Brown Bunny" Gallo? (Check out this great train wreck tale.)

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Over dinner on Friday night, Toronto Film Festival co-director Cameron Bailey (@cameronbailey) was grinning like the Cheshire Cat over the rich slate of movies that may be available for the fall fest that weren't ready for Cannes. Will Toronto be able to lure Clint Eastwood up North with Hereafter? They might also land still in-the-works pics from Wong Kar Wai (The Grand Master), Darren Aronofsky (The Black Swan), Tom Tykwer (Three), Julian Schnabel (Miral), Sofia Coppola (Somewhere) and Gus Van Sant. Last week Bailey did the studio and agency rounds and was psyched about what he might be able to bring to Toronto, from gala fall junket premieres to indie fare. Saturday he headed to New York to meet with major fest supplier Sony Pictures Classics, among others.

Meanwhile, Cannes Critics Week and Director's Fortnight announcements reveal lists of movies most of us have never heard of. The biggest American project: Shit Year, Cam Archer’s follow-up to Wild Tigers I Have Known, starring Ellen Barkin and Luke Grimes (Brothers & Sisters). Eleven of the Fortnight films are by rookies, who will compete for the first-timer prize, the Camera d’Or.

This article is related to: Festivals, Toronto, Cannes

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Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.