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When a Man Loves a Women: Breaking Glass Break in 2013 with ‘Laurence Anyways’

While his second film (Heartbeats via IFC) found an easier pathway to a fruitful distribution, despite acclaim and film festival prestige, it appears to have been quite the task to find a distributor willing to back an almost three hour gender-bender romantic drama with subtitles. Variety announced that after premiering in Cannes and TIFF and soon to make its U.S film fest premiere at the AFI next week, Xavier Dolan’s highly ambitious, imperfect, modern love fable Laurence Anyways has found a suitor in LGBT label Breaking Glass Pictures. The 168 minute pic will likely be released in early 2013.

Gist: The sprawling decade love affair is set in Montreal, 1989. Laurence (Melvil Poupaud), who teaches literature at a CEGEP, has lived for two years with Fred (Suzanne Clément), the love of his life. On his 30th birthday, Laurence decides it’s time to tell Fred the truth about who he really is. And so he confesses to his girlfriend that although he’s madly in love with her and he doesn’t want to lose her, he’s a woman trapped in a man’s body and wants to undergo a sex change.

Worth Noting: The Un Certain Regard selected film saw Suzanne Clément share a Best Actress prize for her performance – what is even more remarkable is that the award itself does not exist in this sidebar – the UCR jury bended the rules creating the award.

Do We Care?: Despite being a known foreign filmmaker in the U.S., Dolan’s breakout debut film, I Killed My Mother never received the kickstart it deserved – legal problems for the distribution company who held onto the title capsized meaning that his sophomore pic, Heartbeats was released beforehand. We hope that this pic (which has received favorable comments among the IONCINEMA staff) receives a loving, grassroots, long theatrical window.

Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury 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 was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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