Three Italian Films Nominated for the Cannes Film Festival
The first film is Giovanni “Nanni” Moretti’s Mia Madre (My Mother). Moretti previously won the Palme d’Or in 2001 with his film The Son’s Room. In 2012 he was the festival’s President of the Jury. Moretti is also a producer, screenwriter and actor.
John Turturro, an American actor, stars in the film Mia Madre alongside Italian actress Margherita Buy. Buy plays the role of a director shooting a film with an American actor protagonist while her mother is dying in the hospital. She has just separated from her husband, Victor, and is also trying to raise her teenage daughter Livia.
The second Italian film is Oscar-winner Paolo Sorrentino’s Youth. The film is in English, and stars American actor Harvey Keitel and English actor Michael Caine. Caine plays the role of a retired orchestra conductor who is on vacation in the Alpine mountains when he is asked to perform for Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip.
Sorrentino was nominated for the Palme d’Or for his 2004 film The Consequences of Love and won an Oscar for The Great Beauty in 2013.
Matteo Garrone’s film Il Racconto dei Racconti (The Tale of Tales) was also nominated for the main competition at the Cannes Film Festival. The film is comprised of interwoven stories starring Mexican and American actress Salma Hayek, French actor Vincent Cassel and Italian actress Alba Rohrwacher. It is based on a collection of stories by 17th century Neapolitan author Giambattista Basile, and also in English.
Garrone’s Gomorrah, a film adaption of an award-winning book by Roberto Saviano, was nominated for the Palme d’Or and won the Gran Prix at Cannes in 2008. He won the Sacher d’Oro, an award sponsored by Moretti, with the short film Silhouette. Garrone won Best Director at the European Film Awards and at the David di Donatello awards for Gomorrah. His film Reality won the Gran Prix at the Cannes Film Festival in 2012.
The three directors stated “we are happy and proud to represent Italy at the next Cannes festival. We’re aware that it’s a great opportunity for us and for the whole of Italian cinema.”
Festival director Thierry Fremaux said that Sorrentino and Garrone’s choice of filming in English emphasizes that “English is the Esperanto… a world language, not necessarily tied to just one country.”
Culture Minster Dario Franceschini commented “the Cannes Film Festival programmers’ selection of three Italian films for competition is a reward to our cinema, which is speaking to the world once again.”