'The Beloved,' with Catherine Deneuve, will close the Cannes Film Festival
The Cannes Film Festival has announced that "Les Bien-Aimes" ("The Beloved"), a French-language romantic comedy set across Europe in different parts of the 20th century, will be the closing-night movie.
Catherine Deneuve stars in the movie, which is directed by Cannes veteran Christophe Honore (he came in 2007 with "Love Songs") and features a rare acting appearance by Milos Forman. The Czech auteur was most recently, and perhaps most famously, seen by American audiences a decade ago in the religious comedy "Keeping the Faith," in which he played a clergyman.
"Beloved" is set in Paris, Prague and London, making for a neat bookend with the Paris-set opening film, Woody Allen's "Midnight in Paris."
The closing-night film is not typically one of the high-profile slots at Cannes -- last year's premiere, for instance, was Charlotte Gainsbourgh's relatively little-known "The Tree" -- with most eyes trained that weekend on the festival's prestigious Palme d'Or and other prizes.
Still, the "Beloved" news means there will be a Cannes return for Deneuve, a veteran of the festival who has brought numerous movies to the Croisette; she also served as a vice president of the jury in 1994 and received a special jury prize for her body of work in 2008.
Festival organizers on Thursday also announced that they will pay tribute to Egyptian cinema with a one-day screening of 10 short films centered on the country's recent revolution. The festival, which runs May 11- 22, plans on honoring a specific country each year, beginning with the feting of Egypt.
-- Steven Zeitchik
Photo: Catherine Deneuve in Beverly Hills on March 9. Credit: Liz O. Baylen / Los Angeles Times