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The Conversation: Venice 2017 – Those Who Were Not Named

The Conversation

The Conversation: Venice 2017 – Those Who Were Not Named

The Conversation: Venice 2017 – Those Who Were Not Named

With Locarno and Venice’s recently announced competition line-ups, the last stand as far as 2017 festival circuit competition now sits with the soon to be revealed Platform Program at the Toronto International Film Festival, which will be the third annual lineup (last year, TIFF conjured premieres for Bonello’s Nocturama, Jenkins’ Moonlight, and Larrain’s Jackie here). Those not named in Venice’s line-up last week might give us a few hints at some stragglers we expect to show in Platform’s increasing visibility, but it also gives us an idea about what might pop up in Berlin and Cannes in 2018.

Despite the disappointing out-of-competition slot for Lucrecia Martel’s Zama in Venice (leaving only one woman in the main comp, Vivian Qu with her sophomore effort Angels Wear White), a slew of obvious suspects from the US and Italy (Aronofsky, Clooney, Pallaoro, Payne, Virzi) pop up alongside some surprises, such as Paul Schrader (who seems poised for a major comeback), Andrew Haigh, and Ziad Doueiri. Perhaps Venice’s greatest coup is Abdellatif Kechiche with Mektoub, My Love: Canto Uno (which means we can probably expect the second part to pop up in Cannes). Also, it would seem Carlos Reygadas and Jean-Luc Godard, both who were rumored not to be ready in time, might also be major Croisette titles next year. Yorgos Lanthimos, who recently wrapped The Favorite, might also be in no hurry to have a second major premiere in 2017. The absence of Alfonso Cuaron with Roma is somewhat disappointing, as is Christian Petzold with Transit (again, Berlin could be likely for either, though both auteurs are still prime for a Cannes comp entry). But perhaps more shocking are the absence of some Lido regulars, such as Benoit Jacquot with the Isabelle Huppert headlined Eva, and Luca Guadagnino with his Suspiria remake. Both could be held for next year (Jacquot is no stranger to Berlin, either, last in comp in 2015), but would also be major steals if TIFF snaps them up.

A slew of other titles which may still be jockeying for space include Pablo Berger’s Abracadabra, Lisa Langseth’s Euphoria (her last film was programmed at TIFF, so Platform seems a logical invite), David Zellner’s Damsel, Pawel Pawlikowski’s Cold War, David Robert Mitchell’s Under the Silver Lake, Michael Mayer’s long awaited third effort in Elisabeth Moss and Saoirse Ronan starrer The Seagull, Debra Granik’s My Abandonment (certainly now positioned for Sundance), Armando Iannucci’s The Death of Stalin (receives an October release in the U.K), Clio Barnard’s Dark River, and Erick Zonca’s Black River.

And then, there’s a slew of contenders who may not have been ready in time, like Ulrich Seidl with Evil Games, Miroslav Slaboshpitsky with Luxembourg, or Ari Folman with his animated Anne Frank project. Either way, it’s already a stuffed fourth quarter for 2017, but some of these still have a chance to get in where they fit in.

Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is IONCINEMA.com's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes, TIFF and AFI. His top 3 for 2016: Toni Erdmann (Maren Ade), Elle (Paul Verhoeven) and OJ: Made in America (Ezra Edelman).

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