Cannes nods prods

Festival fetes producers for role in film

PARIS — Following the Cannes Film Festival’s 50th anniversary extravaganza last year — where almost all of the event’s prize-winning directors gathered to be feted — the 51st affair will pay homage to ‘the producer.’

Marie-Pierre Hauville, one of the fest’s organizers says, “The producer has strong ties to the filmmaking process which are often talked of as a role apart. We want to highlight the importance of the producer.”

Hauville told Daily Variety that each day of the fest’s run will be devoted to a particular producer who will screen three films he had a hand in launching.

The fest is hoping to align this with active participation from the artists, directors and actors of each of the films, including attendees; Kevin Costner, Roman Polanski, Gong Li, Ines Sastre and Jeff Goldblum. An honorary award will then be presented to the prod during a tribute dinner at the close of ‘his’ day.

Although it’s too early for confirmed attendance from all producers, among the invitee-honorees are: Claude Berri, Mike Medavoy, Andres Vincente Gomes, Eric Fellner and Tim Bevan. Each of whom could also have a director present whose career he helped to mold. Hauville explains, “Behind some of the most beautiful works of different directors, is the very strong relation-ship with a producer.”

In the case of Berri, the fest is looking to Milos Foreman. With Medavoy it would be Jonathan Demme and so on. Hauville is also very hopeful for Roger Corman’s presence as the man who kicked off fest-jury prexy Martin Scorsese’s career.

During a press conference early in the first week, Hauville plans to regroup all of the producers and their various ‘protégés’ as a way to highlight the diversity in age and nationality that exists in today’s filmmaking community.

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