Hungarian uprising

Cannes Daily Spotlight 2012: Hungarian Cinema

As Bela Tarr retires, these five helmers are among the country’s most vital voices:

Gyorgy Palfi
No stranger to the Croisette, the “Taxidermia” helmer returns to Cannes with “Final Cut,” a montage film comprising 450 scenes from mainstream movies that became an underground hit in the film club circuit in his native Hungary. “Final Cut” will close Cannes Classics, a selection choice that Palfi personally regards as a gesture of symbolically “legalizing” his (or anyone’s) irreverent sampling of copyrighted materials. He is also preparing “Toldi,” a postmodern take on Hungary’s only superhero, an actual 14th century muscleman.

Balint Kenyeres
Stellan Skarsgard and Nastassja Kinski signed up for Kenyeres’ debut feature, “Hier,” which has been selected for Cannes’ L’Atelier. Filming on the $3.2 million existential thriller is due to commence in Morocco and Hungary in the fall, with Les Films de L’Apres-midi, Hungary’s Cameo Film and Sweden’s Bob Film co-producing.


Janos Szasz
Revered for his slow-burning movies tinged with Eastern European gloom (“Woyzeck,” “Opium: Diary of a Madwoman”), Szasz is in the director’s seat on “The Notebook” (Le Grand cahier), based on Agota Kristof’s prize-winning 1986 novel. The book centers on twin boys who attempt to duke out the horrors of WWII in the Hungarian countryside. Shooting on the $4.4 million production wrapped shortly before Cannes.


Kornel Mundruczo
Hard-core auteur of such esoteric Cannes competition entries as “Delta” and “Tender Son: The Frankenstein Project,” Mundruczo is developing his first populist film with producer Viktoria Petranyi. Set in Asia, “The Flying Man” is the story of a gifted kid who can work miracles. The tandem’s shingle, Proton Cinema, is producing with Peter Carlton’s Warp Films.


Szabolcs Hajdu
“The Gambler,” Hajdu’s follow-up to “Bibliotheque Pascal” is a micro-budget reiteration of the Dostoyevsky short story with a Romanian nouveau riche family trying their luck in the world capital of gambling. Shot guerrilla style in Las Vegas.


Cannes Daily Spotlight 2012: Hungarian Cinema
Vajna’s goal is to win over locals | Aggressive tax rebate keeps foreign pics coming | Hungarian uprising

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