Opening in New York this Friday and in Los Angeles on March 22nd, Reality is acclaimed writer-director Matteo Garrone’s follow-up to his award-winning crime drama Gomorrah. In this darkly comic fairy tale where magical realism meets neo-realism, Garrone honors Italy’s cinematic past while focusing on the highly contemporary subject of reality television and today’s fascination with instant celebrity. He introduces an indelible cinematic everyman, Luciano (Aniello Arena), whose unforgettable journey from small-town fishmonger to big-city superstar becomes a universal fable about dreaming big that is at once delightful, delirious and deceptive.
In an exclusive interview, Garrone talked to me about the true story that inspired his fascinating character study, how he navigated the subtle line between reality and fantasy, why he cast a former Mafia hitman in the main role, the similarities he sees between Arena and Robert De Niro, how the death of D.P. Marco Onorato left a deep personal and professional void in his life, his collaboration with composer Alexandre Desplat, and what the film’s unusual ending shares in common with Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in America. He also revealed how writer René Girard and filmmakers Federico Fellini, Vittorio De Sica and Pietro Germi influenced his work and why he thinks Quentin Tarantino should add Germi to the group of cult mavericks he’s rediscovered.
We’re happy to bring you an exclusive clip from writer/director Matteo Garrone‘s (Gomorra) dark comedy Reality. The pic centers on a Neapolitan fishmonger named Luciano who supplements his modest income by pulling off minor scams together with his wife. When Luciano gets the opportunity to audition for Big Brother, his perception of reality begins to change. In this debut clip, we see Aniello Arena’s Luciano arrive late to the auditions, but it’s clear that the character isn’t going to let a little thing like tardiness stand in the way of his possible big break.
Hit the jump to watch the clip. Reality opens in New York on March 15th and in LA on March 22nd.
The line-up for this year’s Toronto International Film Festival has been announced and it is a doozy. The festival will play host to some of the year’s biggest world premieres including Rian Johnson‘s Looper (which will be the festival’s opening night film), The Wachowskis and Tom Tykwer‘s Cloud Atlas, Ben Affleck‘s Argo, David O. Russell‘s The Silver Linings Playbook, Derek Cianfrance‘s The Place Beyond the Pines, Joss Whedon‘s Much Ado About Nothing, Noah Baumbach‘s Frances Ha, and Neil Jordan‘s Byzantium. Films making their International/North American debuts (which means that they’ll like show up at the Venice Film Festival first) include Terrence Malick‘s To the Wonder, Joe Wright‘s Anna Karenina, Robert Redford‘s The Company You Keep, and Billy Bob Thornton‘s Jayne Mansfield’s Car.
Hit the jump for the first wave of announced films. The 2012 Toronto International Film Festival runs from September 6 – 16th.
Another Cannes, another win for Michael Haneke. Haneke won the Grand Jury Prize in for The Piano Teacher in 2001, Best Director for Caché in 2005, and the festival’s top honor, the Palme d’Or, for The White Ribbon in 2009. With no brass ring left, Haneke settled for another Palme D’Or at this year’s fest for his typically harrowing tale of elderly marriage, Amour (aka Love). Haneke is now the eighth director to win Best Film twice*, joining the likes of Francis Ford Coppola and the Daredenne brothers.
Beyond the Hills was the only film to win multiple awards, earning both Best Screenplay (by writer/director Cristian Mungiu) and a tie for Best Actress between co-stars Cosmina Stratan and Cristina Flutur. The only winner I can guarantee we Americans will be able to see anytime soon is Beasts of the Southern Wild, which is set for release on June 27 after writer/director Benh Zeitlin won the Caméra d’or (Best First Feature). The jury also awarded Reality, The Angels’ Share, Post Tenebras Lux, and The Hunt. Hit the jump for the full list of award winners.