Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Marcello Mastroianni, Sofia Loren and Sergio Leone Celebrated at the Cannes Film Festival

cannesSophia Loren as a guest of honor, the birth of the Italian western, 30 years old for Paris, Texas, a homage to Henri Langlois, Kieslowski back at Cannes, a masterpiece of Georgian cinema, an unacknowledged film by Raymond Bernard about WWI, rediscovering the colors of Sayat Nova, restorations coming from all over the world, here comes Cannes Classics 2014.

Ten years ago our relationship with contemporary cinema was about to be shaken up by digital revolution. The Festival de Cannes created Cannes Classics, a selection which allows production companies, right holders, cinematheques and national archives throughout the world to show their work done to preserve patrimonial value. Now an essential part of the Official Selection with a presence that inspired several international festivals. Cannes Classics presents old-established features and masterpieces from the history of film in restored prints. Cannes also gives itself the mission to delight audiences of today with the memory of cinema. Thus Cannes Classics confers the prestige of the world’s biggest festival on rediscovered films, accompanying all new exploitations: release in theaters, VOD or DVD edition/Blu-ray of the great works of the past. The selected films for 2014 will be screened at the Palais des Festivals, Salle Buñuel or Salle du Soixantième, with the restoration teams and with those who directed them, when they still among us. The program of the edition 2014 of Cannes Classics is made of twenty-two features and two documentaries.

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Picture of the film Matrimonio all’italiana (Marriage Italian Style) by Vittorio De Sica

Award for Best Actress in 1961 and president of the jury in 1966, Sophia Loren was awarded the 2014 Guest of Honor for Cannes Classics. While at the dinner celebration, the beautiful Italian actress declared that Marcello Mastroianni “was an amazing man with a great sense of humor and when we got tired, he would begin to tell jokes. It was 20 years of work and fun,” and added that “Of all my films with Marcello and Vittorio (De Sica), I remember the smallest detail, everything.”

Sofia Loren will be present at the screening of LA VOCE HUMANA (2014, 25mn), directed by Edoardo Ponti, which will mark the occasion of her comeback to the movies. During the same evening MARRIAGE ITALIAN STYLE (Matrimonio all’italiana) by Vittorio De Sica (1964, 1h42) will be screened in 4K restoration by L’Immagine Ritrovata. Restoration carried out in collaboration with Surf Film by Cineteca di Bologna and Technicolor Foundation for Cinema Heritage with contribution from Memory Cinema, at L’Immagine Ritrovata laboratory.

Sophia Loren had also accepted to give a masterclass—a conversation which will took place on the stage of Salle Buñuel.

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Picture of the film A Fistful of Dollars by Sergio Leone © RR

Quentin Tarantino to close the Festival de Cannes with a celebration of the life and work of Sergio Leone. A Fistful of Dollars by Sergio Leone will be screened at the Awards Ceremony on Saturday 24th May.

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the birth of the Spaghetti Western in 1964, the Festival de Cannes will be showing A Fistful of Dollars directed by Sergio Leone that same year and starring Clint Eastwood and Gian Maria Volontè. The film will be screened on Saturday 24th May, after the prizes have been awarded, using the exceptional new copy restored by the Cineteca di Bologna.

The event will be hosted by Quentin Tarantino, a great admirer of Sergio Leone, who has always been open about how much his own film making owes to the influence of the Western’s great Italian masters.

The restoration of A Fistful of Dollars was undertaken by the Cineteca di Bologna and Unidis Jolly Film (the film’s original producer and distributor) with the involvement of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and Martin Scorsese’s Film Foundation. The work was carried out by the Immagine Ritrovata film restoration laboratory. The original Techniscope camera negative was digitised by immersion and restored to 4K resolution. Cinematographer Ennio Guarneri oversaw the digital calibration and a period copy printed in Technicolor was used as a visual reference. The digital restoration of the sound was achieved with two optical negatives of the English version owned by Unidis Jolly Film and MGM, remixed with two separate magnetic sets that contained the original pre-mixes of the music and the effects.

The screening is made possible thanks to the right holders: the Paladino family and Unidis Jolly Film. Special thanks go to the Leone family.

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