And on the fifth day of the Cannes Film Festival, it snowed (actually, part of a promotion for Robert Zemeckis' A Christmas Carol, starring Jim Carrey, due out in November). Meanwhile, Rachel Weisz walked the red carpet and talked about her role as a fourth century astronomer, and Lars Von Trier's Antichrist provoked both boos and applause.
Key Screenings. Out of Competition: Alejandro Amenabar's Egyptian historical epic Agora (with the aforementioned Rachel Weisz). Press screening: Lars Von Trier's polarizing Antichrist. Competition: Johnny To's Vengeance (with Johnny Hallyday as a French chef with a murderous past), Brillante Mendoza's crime-themed drama Kinatay. Robert Guediguian's tale of Nazi resistance during World War II, The Army of Crime. Un Certain Regard: Pavel Lounguine's Russian historical drama Tzar. Directors' Fortnight: Denis Villeneuve's school shooting recreation Polytechnique, Riad Sattouf's teen coming of age flick Les Beaux Gosses.
Films Sold. The festival is a great time to conclude and/or announce distribution deals. indieWIRE brings word that Regent Releasing / Here Media have acquired Lucia Puenzo's The Fish Child and Eran Merav's Zion and His Brother. The former, from the director of XXY, tells of a romance between an upper-class teenage girl in Argentina who falls in love with her family's 20-year-old Paraguayan maid. The latter, from a debut director, is a coming-of-age drama about two brothers, "set in a gritty neighborhood in Haifa, Israel." Look for both films in theaters early next year.
Thomas Balmes' doc Baby(ies) is still in post-production, but Focus Features has seen enough; they picked up US and other rights to the film in a deal announced today. They plan a release in 2010. The film "simultaneously follows four babies, in Mongolia, Namibia, San Francisco, and Tokyo, respectively, from birth to first steps," according to indieWIRE.
After the jump: The critics divide on Antichrist.