French director Céline Sciamma (Portrait of a Lady on Fire,Petite maman) will preside over the jury of the Giornate degli Autori, the independent sidebar running parallel to the Venice International Film Festival. Founded in 2004, modeled on the Directors’ Fortnight in Cannes, and often referred to as Venice Days, the Giornate selects ten films each year by young and promising directors to compete for its single official prize, the Giornate degli Autori Award. Sciamma and her jury composed of participants in the European Parliament’s 27 Times Cinema program will select this year’s winner.
Cédric Succivalli, a programmer for the Giornate, says that the team is about to finalize its selection, and the lineup for Venice’s seventy-ninth edition, running from August 31 through September 10, will likely be announced during the last week of July. In the meantime, the festival has joined Cannes and Berlin as well as the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) and the European Film Academy in calling for the immediate release of Iranian directors Jafar Panahi, Mohammad Rasoulof, and Mostafa Aleahmad. All three have been arrested and imprisoned within the past week. Talking with other directors in Iran and scholars specializing in Iranian cinema, IndieWire’s Eric Kohn has put together an excellent backgrounder on the alarming crackdown.
In other festival news, Sarajevo will present its Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Award to Paul Schrader during the twenty-eighth edition running from August 12 through 19. FIDMarseille, a festival whose “most obvious qualities are its lack of pretense and penchant for experimentation,” as Diego Semerene writes in a dispatch to Slant, wrapped a few days ago with the presentation of its awards. The jury—Mati Diop (president), Ted Fendt, Patrick Holzapfel, Bani Khoshnoudi, and João Pedro Rodrigues—presented the Grand Prix of the International Competition to The Unstable Object II, Daniel Eisenberg’s study of bodies at work at a prosthetics factory in Germany, a glove-making workshop in France, and a large-scale jeans factory in Istanbul.
The series of films by globetrotting director Hugo Fregonese cocurated by Dave Kehr and Ehsan Khoshbakht was clearly a hit at the recently wrapped Il Cinema Ritrovato in Bologna. Khoshbakht has asked around a hundred critics, historians, archivists, and other attendees to pick their absolute favorites and major discoveries from the entire program, and Fregonese’s name pops up more than fifty times. For David Filipi, director of Film/Video at the Wexner Center for the Arts, Il Cinema Ritrovato is “the most exciting and rewarding gathering of films, filmgoers, and film professionals there is.”
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