Beginning Monday, April 11 through April 18, the City of Lights, City of Angels (COL-COA) will present the 15th annual French film festival at the Director’s Guild of America (DGA). “Service Entrance,” “Nothing to Declare,” “Little White Lies,” “His Mother’s Eyes,” and family film, “Monsieur Papa,” are just a sampling of the acclaimed French films making their World, International or U.S. Premieres.
Festival Director and Programmer, François Truffart is enthusiastic about this year’s festival, stating, “We are thrilled that for this 15th anniversary year, we will bring an equally exclusive and high profile line up, keeping the passion for French cinema alive for both our loyal and new attendees.”
Monday’s opening night film, “Service Entrance” is a romantic comedy about a 1960’s conservative couple, Fabrice Luchini (“Potiche”) and Sandrine Kiberlain, whose lives are turned upside down by buoyant Spanish maids who live a few floors above. Directed by Philippe Le Guay, the film also stars Carmen Maura (“Volver”). “Service Entrance” will have a second screening on Saturday, April 16.
For those interested in strong ensemble acting in a “Big Chill” type of story, check out “Little White Lies” written and directed by Guillaume Canet (“Tell No One”). The film stars Marion Cotillard (“La Vie en Rose”) and Benoit Magimel (“The Girl Cut in Two”).
For Catherine Deneuve fans, the festival premieres two of her films, “His Mother’s Eyes” and “The Big Picture.” Gérard Depardieu has three films, “Mammuth,” “My Afternoons with Margueritte,” and the classic “Cold Cuts” which is part of The Focus on a Filmmaker event honoring Bertrand Blier. Blier will also be in attendance after the screening of his newest film, “The Clink of Ice” on April 14.
The COL-COA festival also presents daily afternoon screenings of Classic French films, including “Lola,” “99 Francs,” and the restored “The 317th Platoon” with octogenarian writer-director Pierre Schoendoerffer in attendance; a Film Noir tribute (“The Night Clerk” is one of the International premieres); documentaries, including Claude Lelouch’s “From One Film to Another”; the After 10 series which is screening films like “The Sleeping Beauty”; and also for the first time a program of short films by the students of La Fémis in Paris.
Numerous films will have their creators in attendance for Q&A’s after the screenings. Then there’s the Happy Hour Talks daily at 4:00 p.m. (3:45 p.m. on Friday). Subjects range from foreign film distribution to War in French and American Cinema. Attendance is free, but will be first come, first served basis.
All screenings are in French with English subtitles. Tickets are available for purchase online at www.colcoa.org or onsite at the DGA (7920 Sunset Blvd.). Please note, if purchasing tickets at the DGA, it’s by cash or check only.
The COL-COA week of French Film Premieres in Hollywood is a unique festival full of great French films, informative talks and even some French wine and cheese (at the special events). Check out the COL-COA festival site (www.colcoa.org) for all the details.