Proof that people are crazy...
According to Screen International, someone has decided that Chilean filmmaker Raoul Ruiz should be financed to make a $36-million historical epic, Love And Virtue. Ruiz is an esoteric auteur who generally makes small art films. His Proust adaptation, Time Regained, is probably his best known and most successful film. But Echo Bridge Entertainment thinks that it's a good idea to bankroll him for more money than any of his films have ever made. I smell a tax write off, but you never really know. Must be a hell of a script.
Colorado will start another film festival. On the heels of Telluride, the Independence Film Festival of Colorado will focus on "movies inspired by the filmmaking prowess of the 60s, 70s and 80s." This will happen in Leadville, Colorado, which is, ahem, 10,000 feet above sea level, because movies look better when you're suffering from altitude sickness. Before Toronto film buffs start booking flights out to catch the opening festival tribute to John Landis, it is slated for the first weekend in September, overlapping with the first weekend of the Toronto Festival.
I know that aged movie stars gotta make a living too, but this is just kind of sad. Somehow, I never pictured Faye Dunaway toting a machine gun in a movie with the cast of Kill Bill 2 -- but not the director.
Cruised over to the Arcades to see the premier market screening of the closing night film, Denys Arcand’s Days Of Darkness. I decided to gamble on getting in – sometimes they let press into these screenings, sometimes they don’t…
But there was no one from the film there at the beginning. Ran into TIFF boss Piers Handling, and we were both being aisle fascists, and I laughed, pointing out, “we’re Canadians, it’s the new Arcand, we aren’t walking out.” And he says “and with you sitting across the aisle from me, I can’t”. Hehe. I’ll write about the film a little closer to the premier on Sunday, though one thing fascinates me. As with Arcand’s other recent films like his Oscar-winning Les Invasions Barbares, one wonders exactly what people outside of Quebec make of some of the jokes, which tend to be extremely inside.
Anyway, on the way out of the cinema, publicists from the film had arrived to collect business cards, and got tres upset when they saw my press card. “But you know these screenings aren’t for press…”
One, I see half the festival in the market.
Two, the screening schedules in Variety and Screen didn’t have that “No Press” bug they often have.
Three, even if I do, how is it my responsibility to defend the distributors against their own lack of diligence? If they don’t want press to attend, they ought to tell them not to let us in.
And having been denied to any number of screenings on the “No Press” grounds at Cannes, I have absolutely no conscience on this.
Well, I went to a pretty cool party for the Lebanese Film Festival with some very well dressed people at the Carlton Hotel Beach. One of those rare occasions when my decision to pack a jacket just in case I get invited to a nice party pays off. Plus, the whole place smelled even more like money than Cannes usually does, though that may have been the fragrance samples the sponsors were handing out as people departed.
Lots of snacks, but it was awfully polite for Middle Eastern cuisine – and the kid at the kebab joint down the hill from my hotel is way faster filling up a pita with meat and sauce and tomatoes. The carving staff from the Carlton seemed a little bit discombobulated by the vertical spit. Excellent hummus, though. U2 did not play and I didn’t see any movie stars.
Tomorrow: New Asian films, first look at Ocean’s Eleven, and The Five Directors You Meet at Cannes…