The out of competition films screening at this year’s Cannes Film Festival include some of the more high profile premieres.
OUT OF COMPETITION
Here is a guide to the big films screening out of competition, which means they are not competing for the Palme d’Or and are basically ‘prestige’ premieres.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Dir. Steven Spielberg): The biggest major studio release of the year gets a high profile premiere, with Steven Spielberg bringing a film to the festival for the first time since The Color Purple in 1985.
All eyes around the world will eagerly be awaiting how this installment will fit in with the original trilogy. Plot details have been kept under wraps, but according to the offficial plot sypnopsis at the festival site it begins in 1957 at the height of the Cold War and involves Indy battling Russian agents as he searches for the Crystal Skull of Akator in Peru.
Harrison Ford returns as the famous archaeologist and the supporting cast includes Ray Winstone, Shia LaBeouf, Cate Blanchett, John Hurt, Jim Broadbent and Karen Allen.
It is bound to be a huge hit worldwide, but the big question is whether or not it can please the older, more demading audiences that loved the original trilogy. All eyes will be on the reports coming out of the press screening which happens a few hours before the official premiere. (Screening: Sunday 18th May)
Kung Fu Panda (Dir. Mark Osborne and John Stevenson): The new animated film from DreamWorks Animation is about a panda (voiced by Jack Black) who learns martial arts to fight his enemies.
The film features a starry voice cast including the likes of Jackie Chan, Dustin Hoffman, Angelina Jolie and
Lucy Liu. Cannes has often been a place for DreamWorks to launch their tentpole releases like Shrek or Over the Hedge and this is expected to do similar business.
Maradona (Dir. Emir Kusturica): A documentary about the extraordinary life of Diego Maradona – the legendary Argentine footballer.
If the quality is good, this looks set to get interest from the wider media though the fact that the IMDb lists it as a 2006 film may be a cuase for concern. (Screens: Tuesday 20th May)
Vicky Cristina Barcelona (Dir. Woody Allen): The latest Woody Allen film is about two young American women, Vicky (Rebecca Hall) and Cristina (Scarlett Johansson) who come to Barcelona for a summer holiday only to get invloved with a local painter (Javier Bardem).
Despite the fact that Allen’s recent films haven’t always even secured UK distribution, he is loved in France and the European setting of this film, as well as the solid cast, should ensure a lot of interest. (Screens: Saturday 17th May)
What Just Happened? (Dir. Barry Levinson): The closing night film is based on producer Art Linson’s memoir of the same name, this stars Robert De Niro as an ageing producer struggling to get his new moviein the crazy world of Hollywood.
Despite a solid cast with Bruce Willis and Sean Penn turning up in minor roles as themselves, this only seemed to get lukewarm reviews at Sundance back in January. That said the book it is based on is very funny indeed (especailly the chapter chrinicling the making of The Edge) so it could be a pleasant surprise. (Screens: Sunday 25th May)
Also screening out of competition are:
- Surveillance (Dir. Jennifer Lynch)
- The Chaser (Dir. Hong-Jin Na)
- The Good, The Bad, The Weird (Dir. Jee-woon Kim)
If you are in Cannes and get to see any of these films then you can leave comments below.
> Official site for the Cannes Film Festival
> Our guide to the history and significance of the festival from last year
> Download the official screenings schedule as a PDF file