Cronenberg, Egoyan, Gosling among Canuck filmmakers headed to Cannes
Cannes Film Festival President Gilles Jacob addresses reporters in Paris, Thursday, April 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Remy de la Mauviniere)
Cassandra Szklarski, The Canadian Press
Published Thursday, April 17, 2014 7:41AM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, April 17, 2014 12:32PM EDT
TORONTO -- Canuck filmmakers will figure prominently at this year's Cannes Film Festival, with David Cronenberg, Atom Egoyan, Xavier Dolan and first-time director Ryan Gosling among those set to unspool new work on the Croisette.
Cronenberg's satire of Hollywood life, "Maps to the Stars," will vie for the Palme d'Or alongside Egoyan's "The Captive" and Xavier Dolan's "Mommy."
Telefilm Canada notes this is the most Canadian films that have screened in competition in the same year.
"This year's Cannes festival is truly a monumental occasion for Canadian filmmakers," executive director Carolle Brabant said Thursday in a statement.
"This is the strongest presence we've ever had, and a true testament to the exceptional vision and tremendous artistry of our country's filmmakers. Canadians should feel very proud."
"Maps to the Stars" stars Julianne Moore, Robert Pattinson, John Cusack and Mia Wasikowska in "a haunting ghost story and a scathing attack on the celebrity-obsessed society of L.A."
"The Captive" boasts Ryan Reynolds, Scott Speedman and Rosario Dawson in a psychological thriller about the kidnapping of a young girl. As the film teases out the threads connecting the victim, her family, the predators and the investigators, the mystery is revealed.
"What fascinates me is the study of three intimate relationships -- between the parents, between the detectives, between the captor and the captive," Egoyan said Thursday in a statement.
"In fact, everyone in this film is captive to some aspect of their past colliding with the present."
"The Captive" is Egoyan's sixth feature to be shown in competition, and his eighth to be chosen as an official selection.
This year also marks the 25th anniversary of his first film in Cannes -- 1989's "Speaking Parts," and the 20th anniversary since 1994's "Exotica" screened in competition.
"It is always an honour to be in competition in Cannes," said Egoyan, the Canadian director with the most films screened in competition at the prestigious festival.
"I am especially proud to be working with such an amazing team of actors, as well as my family of creative partners who helped bring the vision for 'The Captive' to life."
Also returning to Cannes is Dolan, whose film "Mommy" stars Anne Dorval, Antoine Olivier Pilon, and Suzanne Clement and is set in a fictional Canada where distressed parents are allowed to abandon troubled children to the hospital system.
It centres on "Die," a feisty widow who tries to cope with her ADHD son Steve, and Kyla, a mysterious neighbour who offers her help.
Meanwhile, Gosling's first feature film is set to hit the circuit in the Un Certain Regard section. "Lost River," stars Christina Hendricks.
And Canadian director Dean DeBlois will bring his animated feature "Dragons 2," a followup to his Oscar-nominated "How To Train Your Dragon," to the out-of-competition slate.
Organizers of the famed festival announced the lineup Thursday.
The 18 films vying for the top prize include Bennett Miller's much-anticipated Steve Carell feature "Foxcatcher," and new works from Tommy Lee Jones, Jean-Luc Godard, "The Artist" director Michel Hazanavicius, Mike Leigh, and Ken Loach.
The Cannes Film Festival runs May 14 to 25.