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Lyon, France — In a wide-ranging discussion at Lyon’s Lumière Festival on Monday, Guillermo del Toro talked about the creative and disturbing influence of the Catholic Church, his own personal Holy Trinity, the unique aspects of cinema, his desire to work with Michael Mann and George Miller on a book project and his Boris Karloff-inspired epiphany.
Asked how he is able to translate nightmares into beautiful dreams, Del Toro quipped, “I had a f****d up childhood.”
The imagery of Mexico’s Catholic Church, which Del Toro described as second only to that of the Philippines in goriness and anatomical accurateness, was a main factor.
“There was a Christ in my church with an exposed bone fracture, and it was kind of green and purple, but his face looked like he was coming. And then they said, ‘The body of Christ,’ and I said, ‘No thank you.’
“In Guadalajara, of all f*****g cities, »
- Ed Meza
Lyon, France — Director Nicolas Winding Refn on Monday announced an ambitious new online project at the Lumière Film Festival in Lyon that will showcase restored films and other content with the aim of inspiring a new generation of cinephiles.
Dubbed byNWR.com, the site, set to launch in February, will offer rare and forgotten films that have been restored as part of an ever expanding free content platform.
“I thought it was interesting coming to the place where cinema was born because now we can celebrate the death of cinema,” Refn said at a press conference. “So for the next 10 seconds, we should wait in silence and experience whatever we go through in our minds,” he added, remaining silent for 10 seconds before exclaiming, “And now, cinema is reborn.”
Refn is developing the project with London-based agency Bureau, the Harvard Film Archive, streaming service Mubi and music production and promotion firm Milan Records. Mubi members »
- Ed Meza
While presenting the new director’s cut of “Heat” at the Lumière Film Festival, Cannes chief Thierry Frémaux made an announcement sure to please cinephiles: Guillermo del Toro is making a documentary about Michael Mann. That’s enough to make films about well-known auteurs a trend, what with Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow’s “De Palma” and Susan Lacy’s “Spielberg.”
No other information is available as of yet, though the news is in keeping with del Toro’s habit of pursuing as many different movies as possible. (His list of unrealized projects is longer than his actual filmography, with everything from “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” and “The Hobbit” to “At the Mountains of Madness” and “Silent Hills” leaving fans to wonder “what if?” forever.)
Del Toro has sung the “Collateral,” “The Last of the Mohicans,” and “Blackhat” director’s praises on Twitter, calling “Heat” both “a film that is part of the lexicon of the medium” and “a stark Western set in a hyperreal LA.”
— Guillermo del Toro (@RealGDT) December 20, 2015
Sign Up:Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here. Related storiesAlfonso Cuarón Says 'The Shape of Water' is 'Amazingly Sublime,' Teases Why 'Roma' is Taking So LongThe 15 Best Horror Directors of the 21st CenturyGuillermo del Toro 'Hated the Experience' of Working With Harvey Weinstein on 'Mimic' »
- Michael Nordine
Guillermo del Toro’s “The Shape of Water” is just under two months away from hitting theaters, and it’s already making fans out of some of the best directors in the world. Alfonso Cuarón, the Oscar winner behind “Gravity” and “Children of Men,” had nothing but raves for “The Shape of Water” while speaking to Variety at Lyon’s Lumière Film Festival
“It’s such an amazingly sublime, beautiful film,” he said. “Go, run immediately and go see that film. It’s absolutely sublime.”
“The Shape of Water” is set during the Cold War and centers around the unusual romance between a lonely custodial worker (Best Actress contender Sally Hawkins) and an amphibious sea creature (Doug Jones) being tested on in a government facility. The movie won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and »
- Zack Sharf
Link time. Here we go...
/Film Deadpool 2 and X-Men Dark Phoenix have both wrapped, both due in 2018
Coming Soon Gong Li will lead Martin Campbell's next thriller Ana -- the tone is said to be similar to La Femme Nikita. We'd be super excited because Gong Li is always welcome in leading roles but Campbell's new one The Foreigner with Jackie Chan isn't exactly winning raves
Variety it's official The Current War has moved to »
- NATHANIEL R
Acclaimed French helmer Bertrand Tavernier (“Round Midnight”) will present his eight-part series on French cinema during the 9th Lumière Festival, covering the period between the 1930s and early 1970s.
The series, “My Journeys Through French Cinema,” is a follow-up project to his documentary “My Journey Through French Cinema” which had its world premiere at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, followed by screenings at Cannes Classics, Telluride, New York, San Sebastián and the Lumière Festival.
The project is inspired by Martin Scorsese’s “Personal Journey through American Movies” (1995) and “My Voyage to Italian Cinema” (1999).
Tavernier was born in 1941 in France’s third largest city, Lyon, the home of the inventors of cinema, the Lumière brothers.
Tavernier and Thierry Frémaux are the president and director of the Institut Lumière, which organizes the Lumière Festival – one of the only big international festivals of classic cinema.
The eight-part series includes two episodes on Tavernier’s favorite directors, an episode »
- Martin Dale
For Mexican director Alfonso Cuarón, Lyon’s Lumière Film Festival is not only an event that celebrates cinema but also a relaxing opportunity to catch up with old friends without the stress of the film industry’s business.
“It’s beloved by filmmakers because it’s a cinephile festival,” Cuarón told Variety. “It’s not competitive. It’s a festival that celebrates cinema. It’s a festival of great films with great friends and amazing wine.”
The intimacy of the festival was evident at Saturday’s opening night ceremony and it’s something Cuarón seems to take to heart.
“It’s just one of those places in which you meet your old friends and you make new friends and everything is in the context of going to the movies to see great cinema in which there is a big respect for films the way that filmmakers intended.
He went on: “If it’s a digital film, it »
- Ed Meza
Lyon, France — The 9th Lumière Festival opened in Lyon on Saturday with a glitzy and star-studded yet intimate and informal ceremony at the cavernous Halle Tony Garnier, the city’s famed concert hall.
Thierry Frémaux and Bertrand Tavernier, the respective director and president of the Institut Lumière, paid tribute to stars and filmmakers past and present, including a slew of high-profile guests that included Tilda Swinton, who was greeted with an emotional ovation, Michael Mann, Christopher Lambert and Daniel Brühl. Also in attendance were Mexican filmmakers Guillermo Del Toro and Alfonso Cuarón, who the laid-back Fremaux greeted in Spanish with “Hola cabrones!” – a more affectionate salutation than it might seem – and a mariachi band serenade.
It was, however, French actor and rock ‘n’ roll icon Eddy Mitchell, who dazzled the crowd with his entrance. Although he didn’t play live, “Pas de boogie woogie,” his 1976 hit cover of the Jerry Lee Lewis classic, blared as the »
- Ed Meza
Many actors profess to be surprised when they win an Academy Award; few look as sincerely stunned as Tilda Swinton did when she was named Best Supporting Actress in the 2007 ceremony, for her expertly frosted turn as a corrupt corporate lawyer in “Michael Clayton.” Her shock, one suspects, had less to do with how favored she was or wasn’t by the bookies than her bewilderment at being in the hunt for Hollywood gold in the first place: Little about the way the iconoclastic British star forges and curates her unusual career has courted the awards and embrace of the mainstream, yet they’ve found her anyway.
The Oscars certainly seemed a world away when the 25-year-old Swinton — who caught the acting bug while studying politics at Cambridge, and joined the Royal Shakespeare Company after graduating — began her film career with Derek Jarman, Britain’s pioneering godfather of New Queer Cinema. Playing the artist »
- Guy Lodge
Winding down the day with a good old escapist fantasy – there’s nothing quite like it. If, as it happens, you’re attending a hotly-anticipated gala premiere in Central London, »
- Paddy Mulholland
Nancy Utley has been a studio powerhouse for 30 years. She started at 20th Century Fox in 1986, then moved to Fox Searchlight in 1999. She became president of the specialty arm in 2009, overseeing all aspects of the films alongside fellow prez Stephen Gilula. Their box office has been successful, and their awards track record is terrific, including 117 Oscar nominations and best picture wins for “Slumdog Millionaire,” “12 Years a Slave” and “Birdman.” This season they have a strong awards lineup that includes “The Shape of Water,” “Battle of the Sexes,” “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri” and “Goodbye Christopher Robin.”
Utley is also a big proponent of mentoring, working with such programs as Fox’s high potential employee program, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Step Up Women’s Network, Film Independent’s Project Involve and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Gold Program. She is on the boards of AMPAS, Lupus La and Film Independent.
What were your »
- Tim Gray
The 9th Lumière Festival in Lyon, France, is again bringing together some of the biggest names in world cinema, including Guillermo Del Toro, Wong Kar-wai and Michael Mann, while celebrating the history of film with some 400 screenings of international classics.
Launched in 2009 by Bertrand Tavernier and Thierry Frémaux, the respective president and director of the Institut Lumière, the event has become one of the largest international festivals of classic cinema. Last year it hosted 160,500 festivalgoers – up from 2015’s 150,000 admissions – and more than 1,000 industry professionals.
It was in Lyon where brothers Auguste and Louis Lumière invented the cinematograph in 1895, and in keeping with the city’s cinematic tradition, the festival celebrates the history of film by presenting restored works, retrospectives, tributes and master classes.
In 2013, the festival also started what it describes as the first and only classic film market in the world, noting that the heritage cinema sector is currently expanding thanks to advancements in conservation standards »
- Ed Meza
Warwick Thornton’s “Sweet Country” emerged as an early favorite in the Asia Pacific Screen Awards. The Australian race tension drama received nominations on Friday in three Apsa categories, including best film.
Nominations for the 11th edition of the awards spanned 41 films from 21 countries and include a first -time nod towards a film from Bhutan. Winners will be announced at a ceremony on Nov. 23, in Brisbane, Australia.
Competing for best feature are: Vivien Qu’s “Angels Wear White” (China, France), Samuel Maoz’s “Foxtrot” (Israel, Germany, France, Switzerland), Sergei Loznitsa’s “A Gentle Creature” (France, Germany, Lithuania, Netherlands), Mohammad Rasoulof’s “A Man of Integrity” (Iran) and Thornton’s “Sweet Country.”
The APSAs noted that 26% of films in competition this year were directed by women and 51% were directed by first »
- Patrick Frater
Chicago – In May of this year, Cinema/Chicago – the parent organization of the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival (Ciff) – announced that Mimi Plauché was the new Artistic Director of the Fest. She assumed the position that had formally been held by Ciff founder Michael Kutza, who continues as President and CEO.
Mimi Plauché grew up in a film-loving family, but ended up in Asian studies during college, focusing on a doctorate in Japanese literature and film. She joined Ciff as a programmer in 2006, and was Programming Director before her promotion. As Artistic Director, she is responsible for all film programming at the Chicago International Film Festival, Cinema/Chicago’s year-round film slate, and community partnering. She also identifies established and emerging filmmakers for inclusion into the festival, and has already represented Ciff at other festivals throughout the world.
Mimi Plauché, the New Artistic Director for the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival
Photo credit: Timothy M. »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Adam Fendelman)
Guillermo del Toro visited the BFI London Film Festival to screen his acclaimed awards contender “The Shape of Water” and to participate in one of the festival’s director talks, and the conversation inevitably touched upon Harvey Weinstein. The media mogul has been fired from The Weinstein Company over numerous allegations of sexual harassment that span decades, and del Toro worked alongside Weinstein on the production of “Mimic” during the Miramax days. Let’s just say del Toro does not think fondly of Weinstein.
“I really hated the experience,” del Toro said to the crowd at the festival. “My first American experience was almost my last because it was with the Weinsteins and Miramax. I have got to tell you, two horrible things happened in the late nineties, my father was kidnapped and I worked with the Weinsteins. »
- Zack Sharf
The Napa Valley Film Festival (Nvff) is pleased to announce its collaboration with Napa based non-profit, Jameson Animal Rescue Ranch (Jarr), a new partner of the upcoming 7th annual event, taking place November 8-12.
The Jameson Animal Rescue Ranch Humanitarian Award celebrates those individuals who have shown outstanding compassion, advocacy and dedication to animal protection issues. The recipients, actors Ian Somerhalder (Vampire Diaries, Lost) and Nikki Reed (The Twilight Saga, Twilight, Thirteen), exemplify Jarr’s mission to show compassion to all animals in need and by using their unique platform to bring a spotlight to animal welfare issues help further the work to end animal cruelty in all it’s forms.
“I am delighted to dedicate the 2017 Jarr Humanitarian Award to »
As of today, the 53rd Chicago International Film Festival will continue to push daring and worthy new films into the awards spotlight. Running Oct. 12–26, this year’s festival will open with director Reginald Hudlin’s “Marshall” (distributed by Open Road), starring Sterling K. Brown, Kate Hudson, Josh Gad, and producer-star Chadwick Boseman as the titular Supreme Court justice. Greta Gerwig’s “Lady Bird” (A24), starring Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf, will serve as the fest’s centerpiece event after its premiere at the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival. The closing night film will be another anticipated awards contender: Guillermo del Toro’s “The Shape of Water” (Fox Searchlight Pictures) starring Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, and Octavia Spencer. Those following this year’s festival season favorites will also recognize Ruben Östlund’s “The Square” which took home the Palme d’Or at this year’s Cannes Film Festival back in May with »
When Octavia Spencer was growing up, her mother always stressed the importance of education to her and her siblings. “That was her thing,” reveals the Oscar-winning actress. “That was demanded of us, and I’m glad that she did demand it. We were from humble beginnings, and I believe education was the key out of poverty.” So it’s not surprising Spencer was drawn to City Year, a member of the AmeriCorps network. The organization is designed to help students and schools excel. Spencer became intrigued shortly after wrapping “The Help,” when 20th Century Fox co-chairman Stacey Snider (then chairman-ceo of DreamWorks) invited her to attend the org’s annual Spring Break: Destination Education party. “I heard all the talking points and learned what they do in the community,” recalls Spencer. “I knew it was something I would lend my time to, and years later, I’ve become a member of the board of the L »
- Jenelle Riley
If there’s one 2018 blockbuster that enjoyed a huge showcase at New York Comic Con, it’s Pacific Rim: Uprising.
Steven S. DeKnight’s super-sized sequel brought the big, big guns thanks to that show-stopping first trailer, one designed to usher in a new generation of Jaeger pilots. Front and center is John Boyega (Star Wars: The Last Jedi) as Jake Pentecost, son of the apocalypse-canceling Stacker, who suits up alongside Scott Eastwood to fend off a whole new wave of Kaiju nasties. And if Friday’s footage is any indication, that resurgence will include a towering monstrosity that’ll surely register as a category six on the Ppdc’s (Pan Pacific Defense Corps) official spectrum.
- Michael Briers
"I want to create a moment on film that will last forever, and he's that director that can make immortal things happen on film." In a new behind-the-scenes video from Fox Searchlight, Doug Jones and Guillermo del Toro discuss the complex creature at the center of The Shape of Water.
Set in 1963, The Shape of Water will be released in North American theaters by Fox Searchlight on December 8th, 2017. You can watch the new behind-the-scenes video below, and in case you missed it, check out the trailer for the upcoming Guillermo del Toro film.
Synopsis: "From master story teller, Guillermo del Toro, comes The Shape Of Water - an other-worldly fairy tale, set against the backdrop of Cold War era America circa 1963. In the hidden high-security government laboratory where she works, lonely Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is trapped in a life of silence and isolation. Elisa's life is changed forever when »
- Derek Anderson
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