20 January 2016 à 12:18
Nicolas Winding Refn is our president!
The Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn is our first non-French president of the MyFrenchFilmFestival Filmmakers' Jury! That's right, the man behind the cult film Drive, as well as Bronson and Only God Forgives.
What a way to energize this year's festival! Nicolas Winding Refn, our first non-French festival president, is delighted to welcome you into his secret den.
Danish director and producer Nicolas Winding Refn began his career at a young age, adapting his first short film into a feature at the age of 26. After this debut feature, Pusher, which earned him strong critical acclaim, the young filmmaker went on to direct two more installments in what was to become a cult trilogy for fans of genre films.
A prolific filmmaker, during this time he also made Bleeder in 1999, starring his compatriot and fetish actor, Mads Mikkelsen. This was followed by Inside Job in 2003, his first film shot in English, which was hailed by critics in spite of its lack of commercial success. He attracted attention once again in 2007 with the extremely violent Bronson, which depicts the life of Britain's most dangerous prisoner and revealed the talents of the actor Tom Hardy.
Nicolas Winding Refn then embarked on his most ambitious project to date: Valhalla Rising, a sweeping historical epic set in the time of the Vikings, with Mads Mikkelsen once again in the lead role. This film, structured as a coming-of-age story, continues to explore the filmmaker's favorite themes, including the attitude to violence. He went on soon afterwards to make Drive, which is his biggest commercial success.
Drive brought Nicolas Winding Refn's name into the wider arena, with the film's presentation in the Official Competition at Cannes in 2011, where it won the prestigious Best Direction award. It also cemented the international reputation of Ryan Gosling, who reappeared two years later in the (also) very violent Only God Forgives, which was also presented at Cannes and co-stars Kristin Scott Thomas.
The films by Nicolas Winding Refn stand out from the crowd; they are hypnotic, stimulating the imagination. On the subject of violence in his films, the director has stated that "Art is an act of violence. My approach is somewhat pornographic—it's what excites me that counts. I can't censor this need." A serious agenda, indeed.
After joining the jury led by Jane Campion in Cannes in 2014, he will be releasing his new film, The Neon Demon, this year, starring Elle Fanning and Keanu Reeves. But in the meantime, he's here with us as jury president of MyFrenchFilmFestival!
The president and his jury will choose the winning film from among the 10 feature films included in this year's selection, to be announced at the end of the festival.
Latest update : 05 February 2016 à 12:18 CET