Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, Gaspar Noe, and more announced for Cannes

In what’s been an exciting day for Cannes 2019, three major films have been added to the festival lineup.

First, and most anticipated, is Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Marked for months as a dead cert at Cannes, many were taken aback as rumours began to circulate that the film wouldn’t actually make it to the Croisette due to a protracted editing process. Earlier in April, when the Official Selection was announced, General Delegate Thierry Frémaux had remarked that Tarantino was trying his hardest to prepare the film for release, and that we’d hopefully see it added to the line-up before the festival began.

That day is finally here, with Frémaux remarking “We were afraid the film would not be ready, as it wouldn’t be released until late July, but Quentin Tarantino, who has not left the editing room in four months, is a real, loyal and punctual child of Cannes. Like for Inglourious Basterds, he’ll definitely be there – 25 years after the Palme d’Or for Pulp Fiction – with a finished film screened in 35mm and his cast in tow. His film is a love letter to the Hollywood of his childhood, a rock music tour of 1969, and an ode to cinema as a whole.”

Although a date has not been set for a premiere, all eyes are on May 21st – the anniversary of the Pulp Fiction screening that blasted Tarantino into cult-director hyperspace. The screening will run to 2 hours and 45 minutes.

This will surely mark a seminal moment for the controversial 56-year-old director, whose films have, for better or worse, left an enormous mark on mainstream cinema in the modern age. As one of the, if not the, most anticipated releases of the year, Hollywood will also prove to be a litmus test for the current critical and commercial appetite for Tarantino – especially a Tarantino who appears to be going out and doing something new (despite its Leone-esque title, the film seems to be a Hollywood noir more than a Western). In any case, we’re damn excited to see what the madman comes up with.

Also exciting London Student is Cannes’ addition of Gaspar Noé’s 50-minute film Lux Æterna, starring iconic actors Béatrice Dalle and Charlotte Gainsbourg. The film will, fittingly, unspool as a midnight screening – whether or not the veteran provocateur will return to the controversial, nauseating work of his (recent) past, or continue in the *slightly* more sanitised vein of his masterful Climax (screened in Directors Fortnight last year), we’ll just have to wait and see.

Frémaux had this to say: “Two actresses, Béatrice Dalle and Charlotte Gainsbourg, are on a film set telling stories about witches – but that’s not all. Lux Æterna is also an essay on cinema, the love of film, and on-set hysterics. It’s a brilliant fast-paced medium-length film for Gaspar Noé’s return – an unexpected one until recently – to the Official Selection, for a film that the Selection Committee watched at the last minute and which will be shown in a Midnight Screening as hyped as it is mysterious.”

Slightly less thrilling is the expected addition of Abdellatif Kechiche’s Intermezzo – the 4-hour-long sequel to the much-maligned, tediously pretentious Canto Uno. Considering the director’s standing as a previous Cannes victor – with Blue is the Warmest Colour – one wonders whether the festival felt somewhat obliged to squeeze in a screening. Still, we don’t expect much.

With these high-profile additions, 2019 is looking more and more like a vintage year for Cannes. More coverage coming soon.

The full Official Selection can be found here: https://www.festival-cannes.com/en/infos-communiques/communique/articles/the-2019-official-selection

London Student will be reporting from Cannes May 14th-23rd.

James is an undergraduate law student at UCL, and London Student's Chief Arts Editor/Film Editor. He wants you to know that Christopher Nolan is overrated.

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