Sorrentino, Jia, Van Sant in Cannes festival lineup, selfie sticks ‘banned’
World cinema heavyweights including China’s Jia Zhangke, Italy’s Paolo Sorrentino and the United States’ Gus Van Sant will compete for prizes at next month’s Cannes Film Festival, organizers announced Thursday.
Stars including Charlize Theron, Natalie Portman, Rachel Weisz, Cate Blanchett, Michael Fassbender and Benicio del Toro will be on the red carpet — but selfie sticks won’t, if festival bosses have their way.
Cannes director Thierry Fremaux called selfies “ridiculous and grotesque” and said the strongly discouraged them.
Fremaux announced 17 films that will be competing at the May 13- 24 festival. They include Jia’s “Mountains May Depart,” Sorrentino’s “Youth” — a film about age starring Michael Caine — and Van Sant’s “The Sea of Trees.”
Also in the lineup are films by Italy’s Nanni Moretti, France’s Jacques Audiard, Taiwanese director Hou Hsiao-Hsien and American Todd Haynes, whose entry “Carol” is a 1950s-set love story between two women starring Blanchett and
festival Rooney Mara.
Cannes organizers have faced criticism for not selecting more films by female directors. For the first time in more than 25 years, this year’s festival will be opened by a film by a woman, French director Emmanuelle Bercot’s drama “La Tete Haute.”
Two more female filmmakers are in competition: Valerie Donzelli with “Marguerite and Julien” and Maiwenn with “Mon Roi” (“My King”). Both directors are French.
Geographically, the range from Europe to entries China, Taiwan, South Korea, and Mexico, setting the U.S. of Denis Villeneuve’s narco-crime drama “Sicario.”
Cannes Film festival President Pierre Lescure, right, and festival director Thierry Fremaux, pose in front of the Cannes International Film Festival poster for the upcoming 68th edition featuring Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman, at the end of a press conference, in Paris, France, Thursday, April 16.