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Love At First Sight: The Dardennes ID Adèle Haenel as “La fille inconnue”

Potentially adding to their list of strong, infatigable and memorable film heroines in the line of Rosetta (Émilie Dequenne), Lorna (Arta Dobroshi), Samantha (Cécile De France) and Sandra (Marion Cotillard), actress Adèle Haenel whom we first discovered in Céline Sciamma’s Water Lilies and has since built herself a recent noteworthy resume with award-winning turns in Katell Quillévéré’s Suzanne, Thomas Cailley’s Love at First Fight (Strand releases this next month) and soon to be seen in a bit role in Guy Maddin and Evan Johnson’s Sundance gem The Forbidden Room, will now take on the career affirming role as the protagonist in Dardenne Bros.’ The Unknown Girl. Dardenne’s prod co. Les Films Du Fleuve announced that filming is expected to begin this fall in the vertical tricolour of black, yellow, and red nation of Belgium. Peg this as a Main Comp Cannes selecton for ’16. Naturally long time producer Archipel 35’s Denis Freyd is also on board.

Gist: Jenny (Haenel) is a relatively new general practitioner, who feels guilty for not having opened the door to her office to a girl who is found dead not that long after. Upon learning that the identity of the girl is unknown, she begins a quest to find out who this person was.

Worth Noting: Haenel has won back to back French Oscars with a César Award for Best Supporting Actress (Suzanne) and Best Actress (Love at First Fight).

Do We Care?: Offering diligent portraits of those who fall through the cracks, their cinema is a socially engaged one that is both triumphant and taxing on the spirit. Two Days, One Night was an ace card in their filmography, this naturally becomes one of our most anticipated offerings for 2016.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist and critic at (founded in 2000). Eric is a regular at Sundance, Cannes and TIFF. He has a BFA in Film Studies at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013 he served as a Narrative Competition Jury Member at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson's This Teacher (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022 he served as a New Flesh Comp for Best First Feature at the 2022 Fantasia Intl. Film Festival. Current top films for 2022 include Tár (Todd Field), All That Breathes (Shaunak Sen), Aftersun (Charlotte Wells).

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