75. Cannes with Cronenberg, Chan-wook and ‘Elvis’

PARIS (AP) – Film by David Cronenberg, Park Chan-wook and Kelly Reichardt will compete for the coveted Palme d’Or at a Cannes Film Festival set to settle in the wake of the war in Ukraine.

Cannes Film Festival’s Artistic Director Thierry Frémaux and President Pierre Lescure announced the line-up for this year’s festival, Cannes’ 75th, at a press conference on Thursday in Paris. After canceling the 2020 event and hosting a slightly scaled-down 2021 editionthe French Riviera festival seeks to regain its pre-pandemic attraction with around 35,000 accredited attendees expected next month.

The 18 films announced in Cannes’ prestigious competition series feature new works by several former Palme winners, including Japanese filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda (“Broker”), the Swedish social satirist Ruben Ostlund (“Triangle of Sadness”) and the Belgian brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (“Tori and Lokita”).

Also in competition: Cronenberg’s “Crimes of the Future”, starring Léa Seydoux, Kristen Stewart and Viggo Mortensen; Kelly Reichardt’s “Showing Up,” which reunites her with “Wendy and Lucy” star Michelle Williams; Chan-wooks Korean mystical thriller “Decision to Leave”; and French filmmaker Claire Denis’ “Stars at Noon” with Margaret Qualley.

The 75th anniversary of the French Riviera film extravaganza “takes place in special circumstances: the pandemic, the war in Ukrainea world that has changed and will continue to change, “Fremaux said.

The biggest Hollywood splashes expected at Cannes had already been announced, including a screening of “Top Gun: Maverick,” which will be accompanied by a tribute to star Tom Cruise. The “Top Gun” sequel will be out of competition, as will Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley biography “Elvis,” starring Austin Butler and Tom Hanks.

The organizers will announce the jury at a later date.

Cannes’ international village with flag-waving pavilions annually houses more than 80 countries from around the world. But organizers said earlier that no Russian delegations would be welcome this year because of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. Russian director Kirill Serebrennikov, who recently fled Russia to Berlin after several years of travel bans, will premiere his latest film about the composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky

As usual, most of the instructors in the competition are men. Only three of the 18 films competing for the Palme d’Or were directed by women. Last year, Julia Ducournau became only the second woman in Cannes history to win the top prize for her film “Titane”, the body-horror thriller.

The festival opens on May 17 with the premiere of the zombie comedy “Final Cut,” by “The Artist” director Michel Hazanvicius. The film had previously been scheduled to debut in January at the Sundance Film Festival, but was pulled when the festival switched to a virtual version amid a virus rise.

Ethan Coen will debut his first feature film without his brother, Joel, in the documentary “Jerry Lee Lewis: Trouble in Mind”. Other highlights include George Miller’s first film since 2015’s “Mad Max: Fury Road”: “Three Thousand Years of Longing,” a fantasy romance starring Idris Elba and Tilda Swinton. And Brett Morgan will premiere “Moonage Daydream,” a David Bowie documentary.

As has been the case since 2017, no Netflix movie competes in Cannes. The streamer and the festival have been a dead end due to the country’s rigid window rules. Once a movie hits theaters in France, it cannot be streamed for 15 months. Earlier this year, however, Netflix signed a three-year deal with French film guilds to spend a minimum of $ 45 million on funding French and European films that can be played in theatrical performances in France.

Cannes Film Festival runs 17.-28. May.

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