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Greenaway tapped for Variety talk

Director delivers Cinema Militans lecture at Dutch fest

UTRECHT — Prolific U.K. director and writer Peter Greenaway will deliver the Variety Cinema Militans Lecture at the 23rd edition of the Netherlands Film Festival set to run Sept. 24 through Oct. 3 here.

The Cinema Militans lecture, for the third year in a row sponsored by Variety, will be delivered on Sept. 28 at the wrap of the plenary sessions of the Holland Film Meeting, a four day sidebar and gathering of Dutch industry filmers, plus broadcasters, sales agents, distributors and film fest reps interested in Dutch films.

The director of more than 50 pics and scriptwriter of some three dozen films, Greenaway’s lecture will center around the theme of “the position and viability of cinema in the present age.” The lecture is an adaptation of the topic of Dutch film critic and writer Menno ter Braak’s 1926 essay, titled “Cinema Militans.”

The Cinema Militans podium has been used in the past to deliver ardent prognostications on the future of cinema by previous lecturers, among them Tom Tykwer, Paul Schrader and Alan Pakula, and Greenaway is likely to be no exception.

In 1988, he delivered the second Cinema Militans lecture but fest director Doreen Boonekamp told Daily Variety, “He is a director with strong and very expressive views on cinema, and his views have changed since 1988.” At that time, Greenaway made a plea for style and structure rather than plot, suggesting films should not provide an image of reality, should not be made after a book or a play, but should call our dreams into existence, in a playful way.

Greenaway’s most recent film, “The Tulse Luper Suitcases, Part I: The Moab Story,” is in competition at the fest, where it will have its Dutch premier. The pic, which was also in competition at Cannes this year and was produced by the Kassander Film Co., covers three of the 16 episodes mentioned in the film’s subtitle, “A Life History in 16 Episodes.” Pic is a tale of writer Tulse Luper, who has been confined to prisons around the globe in a life story that runs in parallel to some events of the 20th century. Part I ends at the outbreak of World War II.

The festival, which last year drew 90,000 visitors, is the territory’s premiere film event and culminates in the awarding of the Dutch version of the Oscars, the Golden Calf, to Holland’s top film talent.