Thursday, January 11, 2007

Piaf biopic to premiere at the Berlinale

One of the season's big events will doubtless be the new bio-pic of the classic chanteuse Edith Piaf, called "La môme" or, for English speakers, "La vie en rose", which will premiere at the upcoming Berlinale festival. I saw a long trailer of this at Cannes, and the least you can say is that it looks lush. Olivier Dahan is credited as both writer and director. If bells are ringing, this is probably because he is the director of the spectacular "Crimson Rivers II". So we can reasonably expect a pretty big movie experience, not least because the cast includes Gerard Depardieu, Sylvie Testud and Jean-Paul Rouve. The singer herself is played by the suitably waif-like Marion Cotillard (with Jil Aigrot some of the actual singing).

"La vie en rose" will open in France and Germany in February, with other European countries later (and the UK in the autumn). To see the short trailer and more details en français, visit TFM distribution.

Edith Piaf on iTunes UK:
Edith Piaf - The Very Best of Édith Piaf - Non, je ne regrette rien

Edith Piaf on iTunes US:
Edith Piaf - The Voice of the Sparrow - The Very Best of Édith Piaf - Non, je ne regrette rien

Monday, January 08, 2007

Q&A with Kevin MacDonald and Giles Foden

"The Last King of Scotland", the first fiction feature from Oscar-winning documentary director Kevin Macdonald, is rooted in the reality of Idi Amin's brutal rule in Uganda. Wooed by the president's generosity, charm and apparent populist appeal, young Scottish doctor Nicholas Garrigan (James McAvoy) agrees to become Amin's personal physician and soon finds himself appointed number-one advisor on all manner of subjects, from architecture to foreign policy. By the time he is forced to face the atrocities of Amin's command, the doctor is already in over his head. A bold combination of comedy and horror that balances psychological insight and historical facts, the film's success is founded on a monumental performance from Forest Whitaker. The film is based on a book by Giles Foden.

Curzon Soho in London are hosting a screening followed by a Q&A session with MacDonald and Foden on Friday January 12 at 6.30 pm. For details, visit Curzon Cinemas.