Film festival unspools Sept. 2

Francis Ford Coppola will be guest of honor at the Deauville American Film Festival, which unspools on Gaul’s Normandy coast on Sept. 2.

Details of films to be screened in his honor are not yet released, but the director is scheduled for a public Q&A session during the fest.

Additional tributes will be paid to director Todd Solondz and thesps Danny Glover, Shirley MacLaine and Naomi Watts. The late Blake Edwards will receive retrospective honors.

Deauville will open with “The Help,” Tate Taylor’s sophomore feature set in Mississippi during the segregation era. Pic opens in Gaul in November. The awards night film will be Michel Hazanavicius’ love letter to silent Hollywood, “The Artist,” which bowed in Cannes.

The competition lineup is still under wraps, but out-of-competition titles include Robert Redford’s “The Conspirator,” Nicolas Winding Refn’s “Drive” and actress Famke Janssen’s directorial debut, “Bringing Up Bobby.”

Helmer Olivier Assayas will preside over the main competition jury, which will announce its choice Sept. 10. The grand prize winner will close the fest on Sept. 11.

Innovations for 2011 include a New Hollywood section, focusing on a rising American actor or actress, and a carte blanche presenting a personal view of American cinema. Details will be released over the summer.

Deauville is also developing its pro strand with the creation of Film Corner, pitching American movies to French buyers. This will cover films from the selection without a Gallic berth and productions not at the fest.

Fest’s TV drama strand continues with Deauville Series Two. The first two episodes of miniseries “The Borgias” will unspool. Show creator Tom Fontana will attend and give a master class.

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