Actress' directorial debut to premiere at festival

The Cannes Film Festival has announced that famed French actress Fanny Ardant will receive a special homage during this year’s fest, accompanied by the premiere of her debut feature, “Ashes and Blood,” in an out-of-competition slot.

“Blood” features Israeli director-actress Ronit Elkabetz (“Seven Days”) as a widowed mother of three who returns to Marseille after a 10-year absence, and finds herself caught in a whirlwind of family violence. Pic was produced by Paolo Branco’s Alfama Films, which is also repping international sales, with Rezo handling distribution in Gaul.

Ardant also stars in Taiwanese helmer Tsai Ming-Liang’s competition entry “Face,” a film commissioned by the Louvre, featuring Gallic big names Jeanne Moreau, Nathalie Baye, Mathieu Amalric and Laetitia Casta.

The 60-year-old Ardant previously played in five pics presented on the Croisette, including Claude Lelouch’s 2005 thriller “Roman de gare” and last year’s Jury Prize winner “Il Divo.”

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