×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Alfonso Cuaron Says He Owes ‘Roma’ in Part to Cannes’ Thierry Fremaux

At a special screening of “Roma” in Paris, Alfonso Cuaron said he owed the film to Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux, who encouraged him to return to Mexico to make a movie – and who, ironically, failed to nab the title for Cannes because of the festival’s spat with Netflix.

Fremaux was eager to select the film to compete at Cannes but could only offer it an out-of-competition slot because of a new rule, passed by Cannes’ board, requiring all competing films to have theatrical distribution in France. “Roma” world-premiered at the Venice Film Festival instead, where the Netflix-backed title won the Golden Lion. It’s now one of the favorites for the best picture Oscar.

While presenting the film Wednesday at the Max Linder Panorama single-screen theater in the heart of Paris, Cuaron recalled speaking to Fremaux about his next project while at the Morelia Film Festival in Mexico four years ago.

“There was a lot mezcal, and Thierry kept interrupting me and saying, ‘No, no, no, you have to go back to Mexico to make a film here,’ and he was pissing me off….In the days that followed, what [Fremaux] had told me was haunting me and I was offended – until ‘Roma’ came into my thoughts and changed everything,” Cuaron said.

The special screening in Paris was attended by French producers such as Marc Missonnier (“Django”); filmmakers including Houda Benyamina (“Divines”); and talent like Tahar Rahim (“Looming Towers”) – as well as Melanie Laurent (“Inglourious Basterds,” who was tapped to introduce Cuaron on stage and mistakenly referred to “Pan’s Labyrinth” as Cuaron’s film instead of fellow Mexican director Guillermo Del Toro’s.

Although Netflix has been successful as a streaming service in France, where it currently boasts more than 3 million subscribers, it has struggled with the country’s strict window release schedule, which prevents it from accessing movies until about three years after their theatrical release. Because of the local rules, Netflix said it won’t be hosting even a limited theatrical release for “Roma” in France as it is doing in the U.K. and Italy.

Fremaux has been in ongoing talks with Netflix to find a compromise that would allow the streaming giant to come back to Cannes. The artistic director has his eyes set on Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman,” which was bankrolled by Netflix and is expected to be ready for a May unspooling.

More Film

  • Peter Rabbit trailer

    Australia Box Office Recovers, Grows 3.8% in 2018

    Gross theatrical box office in Australia grew by 3.6% in 2018, to $890 million (A$1.25 billion). The score was propelled by a rebound in the performance of the top local films. Data from the Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia published Tuesday showed aggregate cinema revenues recovering after a dip in 2017. While the 2018 [...]

  • Megan Mullally70th Primetime Emmy Awards, Arrivals,

    Q&A: Why Megan Mullally Won't Talk Politics While Hosting the SAG Awards

    Megan Mullally is funny. The “Will & Grace” star can also sing and dance. While she’s not picking up the Oscar hosting gig after the Kevin Hart fiasco, Mullally will take center stage on Sunday, Jan. 27 when she makes her debut as the host of the 25th annual SAG Awards. Variety caught up with [...]

  • Glass trailer

    'Glass': Five Box Office Takeaways From M. Night Shyamalan's Thriller

    With his fifth No. 1 box office opening, M. Night Shyamalan has plenty to celebrate. “Glass,” the conclusion to a trilogy that consists of the 2000 cult hit “Unbreakable” and 2016’s box office sensation “Split,” topped the box office last weekend — though its win comes with a few caveats. James McAvoy reprised his role [...]

  • Berlin: Patra Spanou Picks Up Panorama

    Berlin: Patra Spanou Picks Up Panorama Title 'Family Members' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Patra Spanou has picked up world sales rights to “Los miembros de la familia” (Family Members), which will world premiere in the Berlin Film Festival’s Panorama section. Variety has been given an exclusive first look of the film’s trailer. The film is the second feature from writer/director Mateo Bendesky, and is produced by Agustina Costa [...]

  • Great Point Media, The Development Partnership

    Great Point Media, Development Partnership Join Forces on Slate of Movies

    Great Point Media and The Development Partnership, the development and production arm of the talent agency the Artists Partnership, are joining forces to develop, package, and co-produce multiple films, kicking off with three projects, including “Chasing Agent Freegard,” starring James Norton (“War & Peace”). “Chasing Agent Freegard,” which is being produced by “Captain Phillips” co-producer [...]

  • Berlin: FiGa Acquires ‘Landless,’ Drops ‘Hormigas’

    Berlin: FiGa Acquires ‘Landless,’ Drops ‘Hormigas’ Trailer (EXCLUSIVE)

    Sandro Fiorin’s Miami-based FiGa Films, a leading sales agent on the independent Latin American scene, has announced the acquisition of Brazilian doc “Landless,” and released a trailer for the Costa Rican-Spanish drama “El despertar de las hormigas.” Both features will play at this year’s Berlinale Forum and come from young Latin American filmmakers making their [...]

  • Ryan Reynolds Cancels Arm Surgery to

    Ryan Reynolds Cancels Arm Surgery to Promote 'Deadpool 2' in China

    Ryan Reynolds canceled surgery on his arm to fly to China and charm “Deadpool” fans in Beijing on Sunday ahead of the franchise’s unexpected China theatrical debut. Just last week, Fox suddenly announced that a re-cut, PG-13 “Deadpool 2” would hit Chinese theaters starting this Friday – the first time the notoriously blood-splattered and foul-mouthed [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content