The Cannes Film Festival will, for the 17th consecutive year, host a classic cinema section as part of its programme, in which restored prints, celebrations and documentaries will be screened.
This year’s in-person Cannes Film Festival has been cancelled, due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, with films being streamed online instead.
The selection that forms the Cannes Classics section will be showcased at the Lumière Festival in Lyon, which will run from 10 to 18 October, and at the Rencontres Cinématographiques of Cannes, set to take place from 23 to 26 November. The Lumiere Festival is overseen by Bertrand Tavernier and headed by Cannes Festival director Thierry Fremaux.
The festival noted that, since the beginning of the 2000s, it remained unaware that the relationship between contemporary cinema and its own memory would be shaken up by the emerging appearance of digital technology.
As a result, it has created the Cannes Classics, featuring a selection heritage films that have been restored and preserved by production companies, right-owners, or national archives from around the world.
“Now an essential component of the Official Selection, in a dimension of the history of cinema from which many international festivals have gained inspiration, the Cannes Classics presents the masterpieces and rarities of the history of cinema in restored copies,” the festival added.
The Cannes Classics 2020 edition programme consists of 25 feature films and seven documentaries.
This year’s roster comprises 25 feature films and seven documentaries. The highlights are Wong Kar-wai’s In the Mood for Love, which celebrates its 25th anniversary, as well as Jean-Luc Godard’s “Breathless” and Michelangelo Antonioni’s “L’Aventura,” which are both turning 60. Cannes Classics will also turn the spotlight on Federico Fellini, the Italian master who would have turned 100 in 2020. Two films by Fellini are part of the selection, “La Strada” and “Luci del varietà,” along with the documentary “Fellini of the Spirits” directed by Anselma Dell’Olio.
Cannes Classics will also spotlight rare films such as Peter Wollen’s “Friendship’s Death” in which Tilda Swinton delivered a breakthrough performance in 1987, and “The Story of a Three-Day Pass,” Melvin Van Peebles’s feature debut. Documentaries included in the roster include “Wim Wenders, Desperado” by Eric Friedler and Andreas Frege; “Charlie Chaplin, The Genius of Liberty” by François Aymé and Yves Jeuland; Bao Nguyen’s “Be Water” about Bruce Lee; R.J. Cutler’s “Belushi” about “Blues Brothers” star John Belushi.