Thursday, January 6, 2011

Palm Springs International Film Fest Kicks Off

Regular readers of this blog know that I am a huge supporter of Independent film making. On my radio show The Palm Springs Savant & Co, I regularly feature directors, writers, actors and producers to raise awareness of Indie films and inspire future generations of filmmakers.

So, I'm thrilled its that time of year when the sparkle of Hollywood shines a little brighter here in the Coachella Valley. The Palm Springs International Film Festival kicks off today with the opening night screening of a French comedy entitled 'Potiche'. 

Each year I try to cover various events of the film fest, along with a few reviews of Independent Films screened here. The Palm Springs Film Festival has an outstanding reputation world wide for its diversity, range of topics and broad international representation. In fact this year we boast 196 films, from 69 different countries around the world! I was reading in Variety magazine that they plan to honor Mark Wahlberg and the “10 Directors to Watch" at our upcoming Black Tie Gala event this Saturday, January 8th. As usual I'll be at that event, and hope to have plenty to share about the celebrity speeches and more. To see my post from last year's gala, click here.

The film festival runs through January 17th; its easy to buy advance tickets or day of "rush" tickets just before screening. This is a perfect time to come to Palm Springs to relax, enjoy the festival and experience life in the desert. Visit the festival website for full details.
The Palm Springs International Film Festival has the following information on its website about this evening's opening screening film, 'Potiche':

"Catherine Deneuve commands the screen with a regal wink as Suzanne Bujol, a trophy wife (“potiche”) whose mettle is tested when catastrophe strikes in her husband’s umbrella factory. Under the assured direction of prolific French filmmaker François Ozon, this stylish French farce is an irresistible romp through 1970s kitsch, politics and female emancipation. Like many wives of the 1970s, Suzanne’s realm is the home. Her smug, philandering husband Robert, who secured the factory through her dowry, is virtually oblivious to her needs--not that she expresses them. But when Robert is taken hostage by his employees, it is Suzanne who swiftly negotiates his release, with the help of Babin, the union leader (Gérard Depardieu) with whom she once had a brief fling many years prior.

Robert ends up in hospital, and having little choice, leaves Suzanne at the helm. Proving to have a natural flair for business, she quickly assesses the situation, enlists the help of her devoted son to create a new line and her daughter (daddy’s girl) and her husband’s secretary (and lover)--and the business positively booms! Babin, who has never quite gotten over their brief tryst, can neither repress his feelings, nor his admiration for her: she is a force to be reckoned with. If she can do this, what else could she take on? But her husband will soon be out of hospital and duty calls…Cleverly drawing parallels with present day issues in France, Ozon’s Potiche uses emotion and humor to explore themes that are as fresh today as they were four decades prior."

Director: François Ozon
Producer: Eric Altmayer, Nicolas Altmayer
Editor: Laure Gardett
Screenwriter: François Ozon, based on the play by Pierre Barillet, Jean-Pierre Grédy
Cinematographer: Yorck Le Saux
Music: Philippe Rombi
Principal Cast: Catherine Deneuve, Gérard Depardieu, Fabrice Luchini, Karin Viard, Judith Godrèche, Jérémie Renier

I'll weigh in tomorrow with my opinion of this film along with any inside scoop from the red carpet.


Anonymous said...

Both Catherine and Gerard are legends! Oh, I so hope you get to meet them!!!!!!

Have fun!

Cheryl said...

Have fun! Can't wait to see your pictures and follow along with you.

snowelf said...

Rick, this sounds like SO much fun. See, 2011 is already starting out with a fabulously good time!! :)



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