Dinard Festival draws solid biz presence

Asif Kapadia takes Golden Hitchcock for 'Warrior'

DINARD, France — With the spate of cancellations by industryites to events like the San Sebastian Film Festival and the Mipcom TV market, it’s good to know that a hop across the Channel is still considered a safe, civilized way to confab.

The 12th Dinard British Film Festival (Oct. 4-7) attracted top industry players from both the U.K. and France to the relaxed atmosphere and secluded location of this seaside Brittany town.

Headed by Brit thesp Emily Watson, the actor-dominated jury awarded top prize, the Golden Hitchcock, to Asif Kapadia’s Indian odyssey “The Warrior.”

A producers round table chaired by the U.K.’s Film Council and French org the CNC attracted more than 60 players as well as rare appearances by CNC toppers David Kessler and Marc Nicholas.

Other French honchos in town included reps from TF1 and StudioCanal. “You have nothing to lose,” says regular Patrick Binet of UGC Intl. “It’s only for a weekend.”

Hugh Grant was on hand for a gala screening of his box office hit “Bridget Jones’s Diary” as well as the annual French-U.K. golf tournament that has become a staple part of the fest. Other stars in attendance included “Dogville” thesp Stellan Skarsgard and Martine McCutcheon, who took time off from the London production of “My Fair Lady” to attend the fest. She was found singing into the early hours in the bar at the Grand Hotel, the prime latenight meeting place.

Co-sponsored for the first time by the U.K.’s Film Council in association with the British Council, there’s talk of a reciprocal event in the U.K., with reps scouting potential locations.

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