Renoir fans awaiting fall film fest

Embarking on its second decade, the 11th Athens international film festival, Premiere Nights Assos International, is scheduled to run from September 16-25 at the familiar Attikon, Apollon Filmcenter and Danaos cinema theaters. Serving as a curtain raiser for the fall cinema season, the festival will include tributes, premieres and number of independent American films. This year the event will kick off with a Cannes Film Festival flavor, with the screening of Jim Jarmusch’s «Broken Flowers» on September 17. The film, which earned critical acclaim at this year’s French festival, tells the story of a sworn bachelor who suddenly discovers that he might have a son. The film stars Bill Murray, Sharon Stone, Frances Conroy, Jessica Lange, Tilda Swinton and Julie Delpy. A huge party will follow the Athens screening. The festival’s main tribute will focus on the work of Jean Renoir, the most important filmmaker of all time according to a number of his die-hard fans such as Charlie Chaplin and Orson Welles. Renoir (1894-1979) signed a number of cinema’s most memorable films – among them «La Grande Illusion» (The Grand Illusion, 1937), «La Bete Humaine» (The Human Beast, 1938) and «Le Dejeuner sur l’Herbe» (Lunch on the Grass, 1959) – and inspired successive generations of film directors. The tribute aims to present local audiences with a powerful sampling of Renoir’s vintage filmography and includes films from the director’s first period spanning from 1946 to 1950 as well as works from his latter period, following the director’s return to his native France. Also part of the festival’s program are films by Greeks of the diaspora, documentaries and tributes to regional cinema. The event’s prize, The Golden Athena, will be awarded to the best film in the competition section by a European jury of students in the audiovisual field.

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