We are delighted to announce that this year’s Focus on French Cinema lineup includes a Tribute to Québec, with numerous exciting films, guest appearances by actors, and Q&As with directors.
This tribute is co-organized with the Montréal festival, CINEMANIA, whose Managing Director, Guilhem Caillard, will be attending the FFC Festival as a guest programmer.
Statement from Guilhem Caillard:
It was a year ago already, as I discovered Focus on French Cinema, that the idea of a Tribute to Quebec began to take form. Much has been accomplished since then and, today, this marks the first time that an entire section of the festival’s program will be dedicated to Quebec cinema. I have had the great pleasure of working closely with the FFC Selection Committee to recommend films and guests and to help them put this Tribute together. I would like to thank the entire FFC team for their invitation and for hosting this crucial, new initiative. I use the word “crucial” because Quebec cinema lacks exposure in the US. This unique opportunity offered by the FFC this year thus represents a rare occasion for Connecticut and New York filmgoers to discover the cultural wealth of today’s Quebec film production.
To showcase this effervescence, we have chosen six feature films and six shorts among those that have left their mark over the past year. Of course, it was impossible to leave Xavier Dolan behind. At 27, he has already directed seven feature films and has become one of the most acclaimed voices among Quebec’s new generation of filmmakers. It’s Only the End of the World (Juste la fin du monde), Grand Prize Winner at Cannes, will open the FFC. This Tribute is the occasion to welcome to Greenwich young talents from Montreal. Director Anne Émond will be presenting Nelly, which brings to the big screen for the first time the life of Quebec novelist Nelly Arcan, embodied with superb aplomb by up-and-coming star Mylène Mackay who is also making the trip to Connecticut. Yan England will be presenting 1:54, an important film about bullying. His main actor, Antoine Olivier Pilon (the unforgettable Steve in Dolan’s Mommy), will also be present at FFC. Actor Émile Schneider will represent Kiss Me Like a Lover (Embrasse-moi comme tu m’aimes)–alongside Mylène Mackay–and A Pact Among Angels (Le Pacte des anges). Starring in both films, Émile goes from historical melodrama to family drama with great ease, impressing audiences with a nuanced and charismatic sensitivity. And, cherry on the pie, Richard Angers, director of A Pact Among Angels (Le Pacte des anges), will be joining us to present his first feature film!
The short film scene is also vibrantly innovative in Quebec, so we were keen on showcasing some of its representatives. Best known for playing a high school student in popular Quebec television series 30 vies, young thespian Théodore Pellerin makes a sensational splash in two short films presented this year at FFC, Sigismond Imageless and By the Pool. A promising revelation, Théodore offers supercharged, disarming performances full of a rare emotional intelligence. Filmmaker François Jaros will accompany his film Oh What a Wonderful Feeling, which premiered at the 2016 Critics Week in Cannes.
Come meet these talents for their Q&As and during our Quebec Round Table!
Truly, the FFC can take pride in such a formidable selection. As for myself, I invite you to join me on the other side of the border, in Montreal, for the 23rd edition of CINEMANIA (November 2-12). Until then, enjoy the FFC and long live Quebec cinema!
Managing Director, CINEMANIA Film Festival (Quebec)
Guest programmer in charge of the Tribute to Quebec