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Venice Film Festival Showcases Auteurs Miyazaki, Cuaron, Gilliam, Schrader, Frears, and Reichardt

Photo of Anne Thompson By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood July 25, 2013 at 10:56AM

The Venice Film Festival gets under way August 28 with Alfonso Cuaron's previously announced 3-D opener "Gravity," starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, and closes with Tierry Ragobert’s $20 million 3-D documentary “Amazonia."
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Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem'
Voltage Pictures Terry Gilliam's 'The Zero Theorem'

The Venice Film Festival gets under way August 28 with Alfonso Cuaron's previously announced 3-D opener "Gravity," starring George Clooney and Sandra Bullock, and closes with Tierry Ragobert’s $20 million 3-D documentary “Amazonia."

Other films not in competition include the return of "Pieta" Golden Lion winner Kim Ki-duk with "Moebius," which is banned in South Korea reportedly for "scenes of self-castration and incest"; Shinji Aramaki's 3-D animated "Space Pirate Captain Harlock," Steven Knight's "Locke," starring Tom Hardy, Sang-il Lee's "Unforgiven," starring Ken Watanabe, Australian Greg McLean's "Wolf Creek," starring Philipe Klaus, Horizons jury chief Paul Schrader's crowd-funded "The Canyons," starring Lindsay Lohan and porn star James Deen, Ettore Scola's "Che strano chiamarsi Federico Scola racconta Fellini," and Andzej Wajda's (Walesa. Man of Hope").

Out of competition documentaries include "When Zappa Came to Sicily," featuring the Frank Zappa family, Alex Gibney's Lance Armstrong expose "The Armstrong Lie," and Frederick Wiseman's "At Berkeley."

Among the global auteurs making world premieres at Venice are Hayao Miyazaki with animated feature “The Wind Rises,” which just opened well in Japan, frequent attendee Terry Gilliam with "The Zero Theorem," starring Christoph Waltz and Tilda Swinton; Jonathan Glazer, whose sci-fi thriller "Under the Skin" stars Scarlett Johansson as an alien; Kelly Reichardt with environmental terrorist drama "Night Moves,” starring Jesse Eisenberg, Peter Sarsgaard and Dakota Fanning; Quebecois Xavier Dolan, 24, with psychological thriller “Tom at the Farm"; and Israeli filmmaker Amos Gitai's “Ana Arabia."

The U.S. is supplying a sizable 18 American features in the official selection, seven in competition, including for the first time documentaries such as Errol Morris's “The Unknown Known: the Life and Times of Donald Rumsfeld.” James Franco adapts Cormac McCarthy's “Child of God”; David Gordon Green sets thriller “Joe" in Texas, starring Nicolas Cage; and JFK assassination drama “Parkland,” the directorial debut of screenwriter Peter Landesman, is produced by Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman and stars Zac Efron, Marcia Gay Harden, Paul Giamatti, and Billy Bob Thornton.

The U.K. contingent's competition titles include Stephen Frears' adoption drama “Philomena,” starring Judi Dench (The Weinstein Co.), U.K./Brit co-production “Tracks,” starring Mia Wasikowska as a woman who trekked 1,678 miles through the Australian outback in 1977, from U.S director John Curran and “The King’s Speech” producers Emile Sherman and Iain Canning.

This article is related to: Venice Film Festival, Festivals


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Thompson on Hollywood

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.