×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Damien Chazelle’s ‘First Man’ With Ryan Gosling to Open 75th Venice Film Festival (EXCLUSIVE)

Oscar-winning director Damien Chazelle’s space race drama “First Man” will open the 75th annual Venice International Film Festival, Variety has learned. The film will unspool on Wednesday, Aug. 29.

This will mark the second opening-night Venice bow for Chazelle. His previous film, “La La Land,” kicked off the fest in 2016 before cruising into the awards season and tying the all-time Oscar nominations record. Chazelle ultimately won the best-director prize at the Academy Awards, while Barry Jenkins’ “Moonlight” walked away with best picture.

A Universal Pictures release, “First Man” stars Ryan Gosling as astronaut Neil Armstrong in the years leading up to the Apollo 11 moon-landing mission of 1969. Claire Foy (Netflix’s “The Crown”) also stars as Armstrong’s wife, Janet Shearon. Kyle Chandler, Jason Clarke, Corey Stoll, Ciaran Hinds, Christopher Abbott, and Patrick Fugit fill out the rest of the cast.

“The hook was to think of it less as a biopic but as a mission movie, and to think of landing on the moon as this insane, once-in-history mission that I think we have a hard time even fathoming as a society now,” Chazelle told Variety as he was gearing up to tackle the project in early 2017. “In other words, we take it for granted, I think. At least kids of my generation, you grow up, you know that Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, you see the picture, it’s all very gleaming and you see the American flag and you feel proud, and that’s kind of it. You accept that it happened. But the challenge or the hope with this would be to try to play a little bit of a rewind and put you in a mindset where it hasn’t happened yet, and it’s the most insane thing that a group has ever come together to do.”

Other recent Venice openers have included “Downsizing,” “Everest,” “Birdman,” “Gravity,” “The Reluctant Fundamentalist,” “The Ides of March,” and “Black Swan.”

The 75th annual Venice Film Festival runs Aug. 29 – Sept. 8. Guillermo del Toro, whose Oscar-winning film “The Shape of Water” premiered in Venice last year, will head the festival jury.

More Film

  • Alita Battle Angel

    'Alita: Battle Angel' Banks on Foreign Audiences to Save It From Box Office Disaster

    “Alita: Battle Angel” beat expectations with its $27 million debut at the domestic box office, but Fox’s cyberpunk fantasy adventure has a long road to travel before it can claim victory. When it comes to achieving profitability, the CGI-spectacular may never arrive at that particular destination. With a production budget hovering at $170 million (Fox [...]

  • Berlin Awarded 'Tess' Sells to Multiple

    Berlin Awarded 'Tess' Sells to Multiple Territories (EXCLUSIVE)

    Berlin-based sales agent Picture Tree Intl. has sold Steven Wouterlood’s coming-of-age film “My Extraordinary Summer with Tess,” which received a Special Mention from the jury of Berlin Film Festival’s Generation KPlus section, to distributors in several territories. Among the buyers are Les Films Du Preau in France, Proview Entertainment in Taiwan, Angel Films in Denmark, [...]

  • China Box Office: ‘Wandering Earth’ Reaches

    China Box Office: ‘Wandering Earth’ Reaches $557 Million in Second Week

    The winning films during China’s Lunar New Year holiday period remained on top of the local box office in their second normal weekend of release. Locally made sci-fi film “The Wandering Earth” pushed its total to $557 million. “Wandering Earth” earned $88.8 million between Friday and Monday, according to data from Asian film industry consultancy [...]

  • Nuno Beato’s ‘My Grandfather’ Part of

    ‘My Grandfather Used to Say He Saw Demons’ Marks Sardinha em Lata’s Animation Build

    Portuguese animator-producer-director Nuno Beato, whose credits include “Emma & Gui,” “Híssis” and the multi-prized “My Life In Your Hands,” will pitch a new project, currently in development, “My Grandfather Used to Say He Saw Demons” at Bordeaux’s upcoming Cartoon Movie, the leading European animated feature forum. Cartoon Movie runs March 5-7. Combining 2D and stop-motion, [...]

  • DF-10193 – L-R: Ben Hardy (Roger Taylor),

    'Bohemian Rhapsody' Leads MPSE Golden Reel Awards for Sound Editing

    “Bohemian Rhapsody” followed up love from Cinema Audio Society sound mixers with a pair of honors at the Motion Picture Sound Editors’ 66th annual Golden Reel Awards Sunday night. The musical biopic scored wins for dialogue and ADR as well as sound editing in a musical. The film is nominated for sound editing at the Oscars [...]

  • Melissa McCarthy as "Lee Israel" in

    Writers Guild Makes It Official: This Is the Most Wide-Open Oscars Race Ever

    For the record, we’re in uncharted territory this Oscar season. While we still have the costume designers’ ceremony to get through on Tuesday, the Writers Guild Awards put a bow on the major guild kudos circuit Sunday night. The results have yielded what is, unequivocally, the most wide-open Oscar field in history. The major guild [...]

  • Melissa McCarthy as "Lee Israel" and

    WGA Awards 2019: 'Can You Ever Forgive Me?,' 'Eighth Grade' Win Screenplay Awards

    In a pair of upsets, “Can You Ever Forgive Me?” has won the Writers Guild of America’s adapted screenplay award for Nicole Holofcener and Jeff Whitty and Bo Burnham has won the original screenplay award for “Eighth Grade.” The major television trophies went to “The Americans,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” “Homeland” and “Barry” for the [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content