The competition for the Golden Shell at the latest edition of the San Sebastian Festival, running from September 16th to 24th, will have as its protagonists some of the most eye-catching moviemakers on the international panorama. Bertrand Bonello (‘Nocturama’), Fernando Guzzoni (‘Jesus’), Johannes Nyholm (‘Jätten’ ), William Oldroyd (‘Lady Macbeth’), Arnaud des Pallières (‘Orpheline’), Miles Joris-Peyrafitte (‘As You Are’) and Hong Sang-soo (‘Dangsinjasingwa dangsinui geot’ ) join the list of filmmakers whose works will compete in the Official Selection.
Bonello will present ‘Nocturama’, a film which has generated great interest in both its director and its subject matter. The filmmaker from Nice won the Fipresci Prize at Cannes for ‘Le pornographe’ (2001) and three of his latest movies were selected for the French festival’s Official Selection: ‘Tiresia’ (2003), ‘L’Apollonide.Souvenirs de la maison close’ (2011) and ‘Saint Laurent’ (2014). ‘Nocturama’, filmed prior to the November attacks in Paris, tells the tale of a group of youngsters that seem to be following a plan.
Another prominent French filmmaker, Arnaud des Pallières, who participated at Venice with his last two feature films – ‘Parc’, in the Orizzonti section (2008) and ‘Age of Uprising: The Legend of Michael Kohlhaas’, (2013) in the Official Selection at Cannes – will come to San Sebastian for the first time with ‘Orpheline’. Sergi López once again figures on the cast, alongside Adèle Haenel (‘L’Apollonide’), Adèle Exarchopoulos (‘La vie d’Adèle’), Solène Rigot (‘17 filles’) and Gemma Anterton (‘007: Quantum of Solace’) to render four moments in the lives of four women.
The Chilean director, filmmaker and producer Fernando Guzzoni returns to the Festival after winning the Kutxa-New Directors Award in 2012 with his first full-length feature, ‘Carne de Perro’. In Guzzoni’s ‘Jesus’, which was presented at the 2013 Europe-Latin America Co-Production Forum, Guzzoni looks at the relationship between a father and his son; as a backdrop, the portrayal of his country through two generations.
The moviemaker known as the Korean Woody Allen, Hong Sang-soo, presents his latest film, ‘Dangsinjasingwa dangsinui geot’ (‘Yourself and Yours’), having bagged awards in his latest festival participations: Un Certain Regard at Cannes for ‘Hahaha’ (2010); the Silver Leopard for Best Director at Locarno for ‘Our Sunhi’ (2013); and the Golden Leopard once again at the Swiss festival for ‘Right Now, Wrong Then’ (2015).
‘As You Are’, first feature film by the 23 year old director and actor Miles Joris-Peyrafitte, comes with the acclaim of the US Dramatic Special Jury Award picked up at Sundance. Co-written with Madison Harrison, star of his short film ‘As a Friend’ (2014), and headlined by Amandla Stenberg (‘The Hunger Games’), Owen Campbell (‘Conviction’) and Charlie Heaton (the TV series ‘Stranger Things’), the film explores the friendship between two teenagers and a girl in their class, which unites and separates them, as a police inquiry runs its course.
The Swedish-Danish co-production ‘Jätten’ (‘The Giant’) is the first feature from filmmaker Johanes Nyholm, who helms and writes the movie. The story portrays a man with deformations and psychological disability who sees in a national petanque championship the opportunity to reunite with the mother he was taken from at birth. Nyholm authored the famous short ‘Las Palmas’, winner of accolades at festivals in Sweden, Finland and the UK.
Also making his feature directorial debut is William Oldroyd, winner of the Sundance London short film competition with Best. Oldroyd, who enjoys a prestigious theatre career, takes the screenplay by Alice Birch, winner in 2014 of the George Devine award for most promising playwright, to constitute his ‘Lady Macbeth’, a tale set in the 19th century about forbidden passions and death. The cast includes Florence Pugh (‘The Falling’), Cosmo Jarvis (‘Spooks: The Greater Good’) the debutant Naomi Ackie and Paul Hilton (Andrea Arnold’s Wuthering Heights).
These bring the titles known for the Festival’s Official Selection to fifteen. Added to those announced in this press release are Oliver Stone’s ‘Snowden’ and ‘A Monster Calls’ by J.A. Bayona, both participating out of competition; the special screenings of ‘Manda huevos’ and ‘Vivir y otras ficciones’ (‘Living and Other Fictions’); and the other four competing films: the Spanish productions ‘El hombre de las mil caras’ (‘Smoke amd Mirrors’) by Alberto Rodríguez, ‘Que Dios nos perdone’ (‘May God Save Us’) by Rodrigo Sorogoyen and ‘La reconquista’ (‘The Reunion’) by Jonás Trueba, in addition to ‘American Pastoral’, the directorial debut by Ewan McGregor. The remaining titles making up the Official Selection will be announced in the coming weeks.