PARIS — COLCOA, the Los Angeles-based French film festival. has unveiled its full lineup, kicking off with Pierre-Niney starrer “An Ideal Man” (pictured above) on opening night.
Set to run April 20-28 at the DGA in L.A., the nine-day festival will showcase a record of 68 titles and will introduce a competition section dedicated to TV movies and series.
“We decided to initiate a mixed program of selections made for both cinema and television, one of the first in the United States, not only because of the evolution of the market, the industry and film viewers’ habits, but also because American directors, writers and now distributors — who are an invaluable part of our audience — are involved in both fields,” said François Truffart, COLCOA’s exec producer and artistic director.
One of the most prominent TV titles set to play at COLCOA is Erick Zonca’s “White Soldier,” a gripping thriller shedding light on a young French soldier’s journey during the war in Cambodia. The film was co-produced and commissioned by pay TV group Canal Plus.
Directed and co-written by Yann Gozlan, “An Ideal Man” toplines Pierre Niney, who just won a Cesar award for his performance as the tormented fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent in Jalil Lespert’s pic. Niney, a former member of the prestigious Comedie Francaise, stars as an aspiring writer whose limitless ambition and passion for a woman drive him toward a dark path and propel his downfall. The movie is produced by two up-and-coming production outfits, WY Prods. (“Yves Saint Laurent”) and 2425 Films. Released in France by Mars Distribution, “An Ideal Man” has already grossed 2.1 million Euros from 337 000 admissions during its first week in theaters. The movie, sold by SND, will have its North American premiere at COLCOA.
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Among the new French movies poised to premiere at COLCOA are two highly different romantic comedies: thesp-turned-director Clovis Cornillac’s “Blind Date,” which opens in May in France; and auteur-helmer Emmanuel Mouret’s “Caprice,” due to bow in Gaul three days before the fest.
COLCOA will also highlight France’s rising generation of filmmakers with Thomas Cailley’s “Love at First Fight” (Strand Releasing), Alix Delaporte’s “The Last Hammer Blow,” Stéphane Demoustier’s “40-Love,” Jeanne Herry’s “Number One Fan” (Distrib Films), Thomas Lilty’s “Hippocrates, the Diary of a French Doctor” (Distrib Films), and Jean-Paul Rouve’s “Memories” and Pascal Tessaud’s “Brooklyn.”
As every year, COLCOA will play films from established helmers such as Anne Fontaine’s dramedy “Gemma Bovery” with Gemma Arterton (Music Box Films); Oscar winner Michel Hazanavicius’s Cannes-competing”The Search”; Patrice Leconte’s romantic “Do Not Disturb”; André Techiné’s drama “In the Name of My Daughter” (Cohen Media Group); Eric Toledano and Olivier Nakache’s immigration-themed dramedy “Samba,” starring Omar Sy and Charlotte Gainsbourg (Broad Green Pictures); and Régis Wargnier’s Cambodia-set drama “The Gate,” based on Francois Bizot’s bestselling autobiographical novel.
Truffart has also added two movies (which both opened at Cannes) to the section titled World Cinema Produced by France Series: Naomi Kawase’s “Still the Water” and the politically engaged doc feature “Silvered Water, Syria Self Portrait,” by Ossama Mohammed and Wiam Simav Bedirxan.
Other docu features set to compete at COLCOA include Laurent Bécue-Renard’s “Of Men and War,” as well as Radu Mihaileanu and Stéphanie Valloatto’s “Cartoonists, Foot Soldiers of Democracy,” which will be presented in homage to Charlie Hebdo’s journalists.
COLCOA will also host two events highlighting French film figures: “A Focus on a Filmmaker,” with Hazanavicius. and “Focus on Two Producers”: Maxime Delauney and Romain Rousseau.
The festival is financially backed by the Franco-American Cultural Fund, in partnership with the DGA, MPA and WGA West. It’s also backed by various French guilds and institutions: France’s SACEM, the Association of Authors, Directors and Producers (ARP), the National Film Board CNC, the French Consulate in L.A., as well as promotion orgs TV France International and Unifrance.