Stephen Frears, Martin Freeman, Rupert Everett, Anton Corbijn, Sabina Guzzanti and Laura Morante are the guest stars of Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema 2018, taking place from the 8th to the 15th of April in the Tuscan cities of Lucca and Viareggio.
A stellar red carpet with the Film Festival paying tribute to each of the film stars with dedicated film screenings, prize-giving ceremonies and encounters open to the public. For the 3rd year in a row, the International Feature Film Contest returns with 14 films competing from around the world that are also premiering in Italy.
The Hors-Concours Premiers and the well-established International Short Film Competition further enrich this not-to-be-missed event. The Film Festival will take place in various locations around the city, including the cinema Astra, the cinema Centrale, the Teatro del Giglio, Palazzo Ducale and the Fondazione Ragghianti.
“Lucca’s international film festival is an example of how culture, private enterprises and public institutions can bring together international cinema stars while promoting our wonderful territory, in the hope that one day these great icons may choose to shoot a film in Lucca and its surroundings”, stated Giambattista Chiarelli of Banca Pictet.
Paolo Tacchi of Banca Generali Private Banking added, “This year’s event is the crowning jewel of the festival and the shining star of a journey we have believed in and supported since its very beginning. An example how Italy is able to create a cultural offer of international quality”.
“Over the years, Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema has become a not-to-be missed event for Italian and international cinema and for all lovers of the seventh art. Furthermore, the feature film and short film competitions are a showcase for young directors and established ones alike,” explained Marcello Bertocchini, President of the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Lucca. “The festival aims to be a hub of the culture of cinema and to offer our public programs and selections of ever-increasing quality and interest, year after year,” Bertocchini concluded.
Martin Freeman, 9 aprile
A multifaceted actor, over the past twenty years, Martin Freeman has encountered remarkable success both on the big and on the small screen, playing unforgettable roles such as Bilbo Baggins in the three film adaptations of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit the fantasy, Dr. Watson in the publicly acclaimed television series Sherlock and Lester Nygaard in Fargo, the award-winning production inspired by the homonymous film directed by the Coen brothers, without forgetting the witty salesman Tim Canterbury series that led him to be famous, The Office . Currently in cinemas worldwide with the superhero movie Black Panther, Martin Freeman will be the guest of the festival on Monday 9 April when he will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award and present his latest work in Italian premiere Ghost Stories co-directed by Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman. Ghost Stories is the adaptation of the homonymous theatrical work in which he plays Mike Priddle. Ghost Stories will be in Italian theaters starting 19 April and is distributed by Adler Entertainment.
After the screening, the British actor will meet the audience.
Anton Corbijn, 10 aprile
Renowned worldwide for having immortalized the heavyweights of rock history, from Joy Division and Tom Waits to the U2 and Rolling Stones and for having produced over 60 video clips that include masterpieces like Heart-Shaped Box by Nirvana and Personal Jesus by Depeche Mode, the Dutch photographer and Director Anton Corbijn will be in Lucca as a guest of the Lucca Film Festival. Corbijn will hold a morning masterclass open to the public in which he will illustrate his forty-year militancy behind the lens and talk about the relationship between cinema and music together with Mimmo D’Alessandro, Enrico Stefanelli and Alessandro Romanini. Corbjin’s Control, the biographical film dedicated to Joy Division leader Ian Curtis that won several awards in Cannes 2007, will be screened before the masterclass.
Rupert Everett, 12 aprile
Actor and director Rupert Everett will present his latest film “The Happy Prince” and meet the audience at the Cinema Astra. Produced by Palomar and distributed by Vision Distribution, the film was presented at the Sundance Film Festival and at the Berlinale Special Gala Event. The biographical drama film “The Happy Prince” brings the last days of Oscar Wilde to the big screen and features Rupert Everett in the double role of director and protagonist, starring alongside Colin Firth and Emma Watson. Rupert Everett’s career has been intense and extraordinary, a multifaceted one that ranges from literature to comics, from cinema to theater and television. The making of “The Happy Prince” was strongly yearned for by the British actor and director and crowns a long career that has led Everett to interpret some of the best-known roles of British literature, such as Oberon in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, Lord Arthur Goring in “An ideal husband”, Algy in “The importance of being Ernest”. Over the years, Rupert Everett has also collaborated with internationally renowned Italian directors such as Francesco Rosi in “Chronicle of a death foretold”, Giuliano Montaldo in “The golden rimmed glasses “and Michele Soavi in “Cemetery Man”.
Stephen Frears, 13 – 14 aprile
Having celebrated David Lynch (2014), David Cronenberg (2015), George Romero (2016) and Oliver Stone (2017), this year Stephen Frears will be the protagonist of one of Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema 2018’s main sections. The twice Academy Award nominated British director (in 1991 for The Grifters and in 2007 for The Queen) will be in the Tuscan city from April 8th to the 15th to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award and to hold a masterclass on cinema during which Frears will answer questions from the audience and meet students. The Festival will also honor Stephen Frears with a film retrospective of some of his most iconic works, retracing the highlights of his career as a filmmaker; from his debut film Gumshoe (1972) to the recent Vittoria and Abdul (2017) passing through unforgettable classics that include Dangerous Liaisons (1988), High Fidelity (2000) and Florence (2016), without forgetting Vendetta (1984) and The Grifters (1990).
Sabina Guzzanti e Laura Morante
Italian actresses Sabina Guzzanti and Laura Morante will also be guests at the Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema to take part in meetings and screenings that focus on women’s cinema, a section organized by the journalist and historical member of the festival Silvia Bizio. A strong and bold look, a new and timely one that interprets intra-generational, international, religious and political conflicts and uses images to depict the relationship between mothers and daughters, women and work, physical abuse and gender-based violence. Film as a means to reinterpret the most pressing current events. The public encounters with the two actresses will focus on women and on their ability to reflect and carry out activities in a creative and professional way while at the same time finding a balance between family, work and daily life. The Cinema and Women theme will be explored in depth during a public roundtable entitled Women who Break Barriers moderated by Silvia Bizio where producers, directors, actresses and film operators will offer their contribution,
Lucca Film Festival Events
As previously mentioned, Lucca Film Festival 2018 features the premiere screening of Ghost Stories directed by Anton Corbijn and of The Happy Prince by Rupert Everett. Additionally, this section also features Isle of Dogs by Wes Anderson (soon to be distributed by 20th Century Fox in Italy); Lucky by John Carrol Lynch (produced by Wanted to be released in September 2018); Storie di altromare directed by Lorenzo Garzella and Papa Francesco by Claudio Rossi Massimi.
International Feature Film Contest
This year, the International Feature Film Contest will feature 14 films premiering in Italy. The Chairman and Members of the Jury who will award the “Best Film” prize will be announced at a later date. The winning director will receive a sum of 3,000 Euros. Also in the 2018 edition, University Jury will award the “Best Film – University Jury” prize and the Popular Jury will bestow the “People’s Choice Special Mention” to one of the competing works.
International Short Film Contest
LFFEC International Short Film Contest continues to be one of the most important European showcases for experimental cinematography. The composition of the Jury that will assign the “Best Short Film” award and the 500 Euro prize will be announced at a later date. Starting in 2018, all competing short films will also be viewed by the University Jury that will award the “Best Short Film – University Jury” prize. The International Short Film Contest features 22 selected works that will be screened over four days (10-13 April 2018) in Lucca and Viareggio. The 2018 selection is characterized by the narration of the most current news thanks to its geographical and gender heterogeneity. Director Luca Ferri, the visual artist Laurina Paperina and the director and curator of the 2Annas Riga International Film Festival Astra Zoldnere will be members of the jury.
Effetto Cinema Notte – Day for Night 2018
Effetto Cinema Notte 2018 (Day for Night) is a section in its own right within the international film festival that was created to tribute the greatest films of all times and that transforms the whole city of Lucca into a giant open-air movie set. Extending over the whole week of the Festival, 41 local downtown establishments will stage screenings, performances, build sets and create costumes in the five different areas matched to a film genre. Every evening the city will become alive with concerts and events leading up to the Grand Finale scheduled for Saturday 14 April, when all sets designs and roving performances will take place at the same time from the afternoon until late at night. On Saturday night, Effetto Cinema Notte will host a Main Event dedicated to the stars of the Film Festival co-produced by the LFFEC and by the establishments located in the theme area. A Technical Jury will award the Effetto Cinema Notte Best Costumes Prize to the staff of the venue staging the performance most in line with the assigned film.
Among the events, the Educational section is dedicated to schools of all levels and offers a rich program with targeted film screenings and tailored lectures. Among the works to be screened The Forgotten History of Camp Monticello directed by Matteo Borgardt, Pertini-The Fighter by Graziano Diana e Giancarlo De Cataldo, A voice on loan by Antonio Prochilo, Seeking the Roots of Evil by Piero D’Onofrio e Israel Cesare Moscati, Let us not speak about this was by Fredo Valla and Robert Doisneau: Through the Lens by Clémentine Deroudille.
This year, Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema host two exhibits. The first, Luchino Visconti. In Search of Lost Time. History of a Never-Made Film is curated by Alessandro Romanini and by set designer Francesco Frigeri, produced by the Experimental Center of Cinematography in Rome and will be hosted at the Palazzo Ducale in Lucca (17 March-21 April 2018). After last year’s tribute to Federico Fellini and The Journey of G. Mastorna hosted at the GAMC in Viareggio, the students of the Department of Stage Design headed by Francesco Frigeri and those led by costume designer Maurizio Millenotti have drafted over 40 executive storyboards – that is to say ready to be transformed in a film set – and designed a similar number of costumes. Aided by a wide range of original documents, the goal is to recreate a journey that illustrates Visconti’s dream of transposing on film Marcel Proust’s À la recherche du temps perdu, a pharaonic project, which had to be abandoned due to lack of funding.
The second exhibit entitled Art Cinema – An Unprecedented Dialogue. Behind the scenes of Sky Art Cinema curated by SKY in collaboration with Alessandro Romanini will be on display at the Fondazione Ragghianti, (23 March-23 April 2018). Over 40 large-format photographs guide the visitors through a journey to discover the “dream machine” in all of its aspects: the sets, the actors in the various stages of filming, film and art professionals at work, the Directors of Photography, the Studios of Cinecittà in Rome, set preparation from the initial sketch to the making of it, the process of costume design and, last but not least, the processes of the new 3D “immersive” technologies. Viewers will be able to enjoy never-seen-before stills of the masterpieces of Michelangelo, Raphael and Caravaggio, of the Vatican Museums and breathtaking aerial views of the Papal Basilicas (filmed for the first time close-up thanks to a special permit granted by the Holy See) and of The Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
From 19 to 22 April, Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema’s program will be further enriched thanks to the screening all the art films produced by Sky in collaboration with Magnitudo Film. The art film screening will open with Caravaggio – the Soul and the Blood at the Monumental Complex of San Micheletto and is promoted by the Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Lucca in collaboration with the Film Festival and with the Fondazione Ragghianti. The documentary on Caravaggio premiered in cinema halls last February and in Italy ranked as the most seen art documentary counting over 130.000 viewers. On 19 April, Cosetta Lagani, Director of Sky Art Cinema, film director Jesus Garces Lambert and screenwriter Laura Allievi will introduce this unrivalled, emotional and visceral journey into the life, works and torments of Michelangelo Merisi, Caravaggio. Art film screenings will continue on the following days in the nearby San Franceschetto with previous Sky Art Cinema blockbusters that have been distributed in 60 countries: Vatican Museums – Between Heaven and Earth, Saint Peter and the Papal Basilicas (20 April), Florence and the Uffizi Gallery. A journey into the heart of the Renaissance (21 April) and Raphael – Prince of the Arts (22 April).
This year, the exhibition section of the 2018 Lucca Film Festival is complemented by a series of screenings dedicated to the intense and multifaceted relationship between cinema and visual art. To celebrate the European Year of Cultural Heritage, a special focus is dedicated to the use of the camera as a means to illustrate artistic creation and enhance cultural heritage will take place at the same time as SKY Art Cinema’s retrospective from 19 to 22 April. Documentaries range from those dedicated to one of the most famous international video artists Bill Viola, to Archi-star Bjarke Ingels, to the history of Land Art and to the restoration of the Reggia di Carditello to documentaries focusing on the superstar of street art Banksy and on a poetic journey from China and Amsterdam to see Van Gogh.
Images that sound good
In collaboration with Lucca Summer Festival, this section takes a closer look at the relationship between cinema and music, thanks to the presence of Anton Corbijn as a special guest at the Lucca Film Festival. Anton Corbijn is the author of countless award-winning video clips, of films and of photos that portray the music world. An exhaustive retrospective will celebrate his career. Works that will be screened in this section include two films dedicated to two protagonists of the female rock scene, Marianne Faithfull (directed by the French actress and director Sardine Bonnaire) and the one dedicated to Andy Warhol’s and Velvet Underground’s muse, Nico, directed by Susanna Nicchiarelli who was a guest in a previous edition of the Lucca festival. Last but not least, “To Stay Alive: A Method”: a film that brings together cinema, music and literature, featuring the controversial French writer Michel Houellebecq and rock music’s iguana Iggy Pop.
Press Office Lucca Film Festival e Europa Cinema:
PS Comunicazione: Antonio Pirozzi (+393395238132) and Martina Angeli; www.pscomunicazione.it
English translation: Tessa Wiechmann
Communication and External Relations Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Lucca:
Marcello Petrozziello e Andrea Salani (+390583472627 – +393406550425) firstname.lastname@example.org