Stanley Donen to be on hand for Grand Lyon Film Festival

The forecast calls for lots of rain.

Stanley Donen will open the second Lumiere Grand Lyon Film Festival on Oct. 4 with a new print of 1952’s “Singin’ in the Rain,” which he directed with Gene Kelly.

With the 86-year-old U.S. director-choreographer in attendance, the gala at Lyon’s Halle Tony Garnier, which seats 5,000, can be expected to be SRO.

“People will love him,” said Thierry Fremaux, the Cannes Festival topper who also directs the Lumiere Institute, which runs the fest.

Bowing just last year and screening only restorations, retrospectives and revivals, the Lyon fest has already captured the French city’s imagination, selling 70,000 admissions for its first edition.

Donen’s presence is another coup for Lyon of the kind that most festival programmers can only dream about. Last year, Clint Eastwood took four days out before the French shoot of “Hereafter” to accept the first Prix Lumiere, applauded by a crowd of 3,000.

Milos Forman will receive the second Prix Lumiere on Oct. 10, when the fest closes.

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