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CINÉMA DU RÉEL 2021

The Cinéma du Réel Festival becomes CanalRéel

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- Running 12 to 21 March, the 43rd edition of the festival will take online form, offering up an abundant programme including an international competition screening 21 titles

The Cinéma du Réel Festival becomes CanalRéel
Delphine’s Prayers by Rosine Mbakam

Having been forced to improvise and adapt last year on account of the eruption of the health crisis, the Parisian team behind the Cinéma du Réel International Documentary Film Festival, steered by Catherine Bizern, has planned meticulously for this year’s 43rd edition, which has been renamed CanalRéel and will be accessible live, online, from 12 to 21 March via the festival’s website (3 Euros per person for films, with capacity for 400 people per seance). The event is due to be pre-opened by an invitations-only Special Screening of the film which triumphed within the Berlinale’s Encounters competition: We [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Alice Diop
film profile
]
by Alice Diop (which will also be available to the public during the festival’s pre-closure).

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Stealing focus on the international competition agenda are 21 films, 11 of which are feature-length. Shining bright among the three world premières in the showcase is the Belgian-Cameroonian production Delphine’s Prayers by Rosine Mbakam, while FREIZEIT or: the opposite of doing nothing [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
by Germany’s Caroline Pitzen and Feast [+see also:
trailer
interview: Tim Leyendekker
film profile
]
by Dutch director Tim Leyendekker (unveiled in Rotterdam’s Tiger competition) stand out in terms of the four international premieres. Also worth a mention are Landscapes of Resistance [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Marta Popivoda
film profile
]
by Serbia’s Marta Popivoda (unveiled in competition in Rotterdam), Taming the Garden [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Salomé Jashi
film profile
]
by Georgia’s Salomé Jashi (in competition at Sundance and subsequently screened in the Berlinale Forum) and The Filmmaker’s House [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by British director Marc Isaacs (discovered in Sheffield). The other feature films competing in this category consist of three American works (bearing the names of Fern Silva, Ephraim Asili and Shengze Zhu), one Japanese title (directed by Yoichiro Okutani) and one coming courtesy of the Singaporean duo Liao Jiekai - Sudhee Liao.

20 titles, all screening in world premieres, form the basis of the French competition section, which will notably present nine feature films: Garage, Engines and Men [+see also:
film review
film profile
]
by Claire Simon, Longing for an Island [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
by Laetitia Farkas, Before the Sky Came to Light by Denis Gheerbrant, Foedora by Judith Abensour, Four White Nights by the duo Nicolas Klotz - Elisabeth Perceval, Venice Beach, CA by Marion Naccache, Living with Imperfection by Antoine Polin, Dear Hacker by Alice Lenay and The Inventory Will Be Drawn up at 11 a.m. in the Presence of the Poet’s Wife by Martin Verdet.

Set for a Special Screenings showcase, we find Golda Maria [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Patrick Sobelman and Hugo S…
film profile
]
by Hugo and Patrick Sobelman (well-received at last year’s Berlinale), The New Gospel [+see also:
film review
interview: Milo Rau
film profile
]
by Switzerland’s Milo Rau (unveiled during Venice’s Giornate degli Autori) and the French-Moroccan co-production Ziyara by Simone Bitton (selected for the IDFA). And that’s without forgetting the 13 films jostling in the A First Window selection, the full retrospective of Pierre Créton’s works, the various Filmmakers in Their Garden sessions (dedicated to Joaquim Pinto, Jonas Mekas, Hilal Baydarov, Margaret Tait, Robert Huot, Rose Lowder and Sophie Roger) and the traditional Popular Front(s) line-up, which, this year, revolves around our role as citizens.

Meanwhile, from 16 to 19 March, the professional ParisDOC sidebar will host several online round tables (notably on the topic of new actors and funding, not to mention online distribution), but it will first and foremost shine a light on the 8th edition of the work-in-progress event and its nine selected feature films. Among them, we can mention Brazza by French director Antoine Boutet, Uprising by his compatriot Laurie Lassalle, Of Dogs and Dogs (working title) by Belgium’s Laurent Van Lancker and A Thousand Fires by Saeed Taji Farouky (produced by France, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Palestine), but also three titles presented by three European festivals invited to the event by Cinéma du Réel: The Moment of Transition by Italy’s Chiara Marotta (chosen by the Turin Film Festival and the Piemonte Doc Film Fund), Kapr Code by the Czech Republic’s Lucie Králová (selected by the Ji.hlava International Documentary Film Festival and the Czech Film Fund) and Water Has No Borders by Georgia’s Maradia Tsaava (in collaboration with CinéDOC-Tbilisi and the Georgian National Film Center).

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(Translated from French)

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