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2024 Cannes Film Festival Predictions – Un Certain Regard (Part 2)

2024 Cannes Film Festival Predictions – Un Certain Regard (Part 2)

Yesterday we tossed filmmaker names like Ala Eddine Slim, Alexandre Koberidze, Marco Dutra and the tandem of Fabio Grassadonia & Antonio Piazza into the prognostication Un Certain Regard mix. Today we present another ten options and make sure to tune in on Monday for 25 firm Palme d’Or competition guesses. The official line-up will be revealed on April 11th.

Maria – 🇫🇷
Jessica Palud
Producers: Marielle Duigou.
World Sales: Orange Studio

A sophomore feature film for the filmmaker that moved into production last May and adapted from Vanessa Schneider’s Tu t’appelais Maria Schneider, Jessica Palud‘s Maria tells the story of Maria Schneider inside the film industry. She is no longer a child, not yet an adult, when she ignites the film of a young and promising Italian director’s film, a camera of sex and violence, alongside an American star. She becomes famous. She was not prepared for anything, neither for glory nor for scandal. The film in part tracks the controversial production and wrenching fallout of Bernardo Bertolucci’s 1972 masterpiece — a landmark that made Schneider an icon while locking her into a sexualized image she never could escape. Anamaria Vartolomei toplines. Matt Dillion, Hugo Becker, Yvan Attal, Marie Gillain and Céleste Brunnquel also star. Music is handled by Benjamin Biolay and cinematography is serviced by Sébastien Buchmann.

Mexico 86 – 🇬🇹
César Díaz
Producers: Anne-Laure Guegan, Géraldine Sprimont, César Díaz
World Sales: Goodfellas

Winner of the prestigious Camera d’Or in Cannes for his 2019 debut Our Mothers, we are placing César Díaz’s sophomore feature on our list knowing that production took place from August to October of last year — and that post prod work could push Mexico 86 into the fall or even a 2025 Cannes berth. Filmed in Mexico and Guatemala, Bérénice Bejo plays Maria, a Guatemalan revolutionary activist, who has been exiled to Mexico City for years, where she continues her political action. As her 11-year-old son comes to live with her, she will have to make a difficult choice between her role as mother or activist. Fermín Martínez, Leonardo Ortizgris, Julieta Egurrola also star.

Mond – 🇦🇹
Kurdwin Ayub
Producers: Ulrich Seidl Filmproduktion’s Ulrich Seidl.
World Sales: TBC.

Iraq born, Vienna-based artist Kurdwin Ayub made ripples into waves with her sophomore feature Sonne (Berlinale seelction), and we think this third feature film will draw more onlookers. Filmed in Vienna and Jordan, starring Florentina Holzinger, Andria Tayeh and Celina Sarhan, Mond is the story of Sarah, a former professional kickboxer from Vienna, who accepts an offer to work as a personal trainer for three daughters of a wealthy family in the Middle East. She lands in a strange world, in a palace behind walls and without internet, where the sisters are monitored 24/7. Production began in April of last year so this Ulrich Seidl produced project is a great UCR candidate.

My Father’s Son – 🇨🇳
Qiu Sheng
Producers: CG Cinema’s Charles Gillibert, Ruocheng Jia, Jia Ruocheng, Zhang Yuxuan, Yuxuan Zhang
World Sales: Kinology

Currently in a heavy creative output, word on the street is that Suburban Birds (2018 Locarno selection) filmmaker Qiu Sheng is headed to the Croisette with his second solo directing outing. A personal story for the Chinese filmmaker about a young man who wanders a city after his father dies, this is a story revolving on family and A.I., set across two decades. My Father’s Son was photographed by Jiahao Zhang (Brief History of a Family).

Niki – 🇫🇷
Céline Sallette
Producers: Julien Deris, David Gauquié, Alexandre Mattiussi, Jean-Luc Ormières.
World Sales: Pulsar Content

Featuring Charlotte Le Bon in the lead and surrounded by John Robinson, Damien Bonnard and Judith Chemla, Niki is the feature film debut from veteran actress and has a legit shot at several sections along the Croisette, Céline Sallette moved into production in April of last year on the story of famous French-American artist Niki de Saint-Phalle. The biopic charts her immersion onto the arts scene. Niki follows Saint-Phalle while she is modeling and striving to be an actor. She’s married and has a daughter who is two years old. They left the United States during the harsh McCarthy era and travel to France, where they briefly feel elated.

On Becoming a Guinea Fowl – 🇬🇧
Rungano Nyoni
Producers: Element Pictures
World Sales: A24.

The heavily anticipated sophomore feature (and closely guarded in terms of details – nothing is known in terms of plot or cast) the Zambian-Welsh filmmaker has had a healthy rapport with the Croisette. Rungano Nyoni took part in the Cannes’ Cinéfondation Residence (2013) and her short, Listen, premiered at the festival in 2014, and then she saw her feature debut I Am Not a Witch landed in the Directors’ Fortnight section in 2017. Invited to be part of the Palme d’Or jury that award Anatomy of a Fall the big prize, On Becoming a Guinea Fowl has been flying low on the radar since we first heard about the late 2022 production. This has the A24 folks involved.

The Shameless – 🇧🇬
Konstantin Bojanov
Producer: Maéva Savinien.
World Sales: Urban Sales

Bulgarian filmmaker Konstantin Bojanov saw his feature debut Avé land in the Critics’ Week section in 2011 and his third feature is posed for a possible showing. The Shameless (aka Comme je ferme les yeux) tells the tale of Nadira (27) escapes in the middle of the night from a Delhi brothel after stabbing an abusive cop to death. Shetakes a temporary shelter in a Southern-Indian devadasi community of sex workers, assuming the Hindu name Renuka. There, she falls in love with the emotionally fragile 17-year-old Devika, prompting her rebellion against her mother and the oppressive centuries-old institution of religious dedications.

Stranger Eyes – 🇸🇬
Yeo Siew Hua
Producers: Akanga Film Asia’s Fran Borgia, Volos Films’ Stefano Centini, Films de Force Majeure’s Jean-Laurent Csinidis, Cinema Inutile’s Alex C. Lo.
World Sales: Playtime

Landing the top honors of the Locarno Film Festival with A Land Imagined in 2018, for his sophomore film Yeo Siew Hua serves up what might belong to the voyeuristic thriller subgenre with Chien-Ho Wu, Lee Kang-sheng, Vera Chen, and Mila Troncoso toplining. Stranger Eyes follows a young father who receives footage of his private life after his baby daughter goes missing and decides to flip the gaze in a bid to track the mysterious voyeur.

The Quiet Son – 🇫🇷
Delphine Coulin & Muriel Coulin
Producers: Felicita Films’ Marie Guillaumond, Curiosa Films’ Olivier Delbosc.
World Sales: TBC.

Delphine Coulin and Muriel Coulin landed on the Croisette back in 2011 with 17 Girls and then with their sophomore feature in 2016’s Voir du pays they won the Un Certain Regard section’s Best Screenplay award. Their third fiction feature The Quiet Son stars Vincent Lindon and Benjamin Voisin and is an adaptation of the novel What You Need from the Night by Laurent Petitmangin and tells a family story rooted in Lorraine, about a railway-worker father and his two sons, following the death of their mother. The sisters moved into production on this film this past summer.

When the Light Breaks – 🇮🇸
Rúnar Rúnarsson
Producers: Compass Films’ Heather Millard, Rúnar Rúnarsson.
World Sales: The Party Film Sales

Iceland’s Rúnar Rúnarsson is now a the four features mark in his early filmography with When the Light Breaks gunning for a second showcase on the Croisette. His 2011 film Volcano premiered in the Cannes Directors’ Fortnight and his next two landed in San Sebastián and Locarno. This is about Una (Elín Hall Halldórsdóttir), a young art student, whose life is turned upside down during one long summer’s day in Reykjavik – it was filmed on 16mm.

Other predictions:

Out of Competition – Predictions
Critics’ Week – Predictions
Directors’ Fortnight – Predictions
Un Certain Regard – Predictions (First Batch)

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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