French helmers' guild starts hunt for replacement

Frederic Boyer won’t be back as artistic director of Directors’ Fortnight in Cannes.

The French directors’ guild, La Societe des Realisateurs de Films, released a statement Tuesday saying that it had decided not to reappoint Boyer, who replaced Oliver Pere in 2009. The news comes after many critics deemed his selection this year disappointing.

During his tenure at Directors’ Fortnight, Boyer placed a spotlight on first-time helmers, selecting eight feature debuts this year. But apart from a few exceptions such as Bouli Lanners’ “The Giants” and Karl Markovic’s “Breathing,” which took the top prizes, and American helmer Liza Johnson’s “Return,” many critics said the films were mediocre in comparison with those in Critics’ Week, the fest’s other sidebar.

Boyer drew better reviews for his first year at the helm, which produced such well-traveled pics as Michelangelo Frammartino’s “Le quattro volte,” Frederick Wiseman’s “Boxing Gym,” Michael Rowe’s Camera d’Or-winning “Leap Year,” Alistair Banks Griffin’s “Two Gates of Sleep” and Jorge Michel Grau’s cannibal thriller “We Are What We Are.”

Boyer also serves as director of Les Arcs European Film Festival.

The guild has started the hunt for an artistic director for next year’s edition, and is accepting applications until July 8. Interviews will take place from July 18-22.

Pere is now head of the Locarno Film Festival.

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