The Cinéfondation Selection at the 68th Cannes Film Festival; Abderrahmane Sissako, President of the Cinéfondation and Short Films Jury

In 2014, the internationally acclaimed Timbuktu caused the greatest emotion among the films in Competition at the Festival de Cannes. This year, Mauritanian director Abderrahmane Sissako returns for the 68th Festival (13-24 May), where he will serve as President of the 2015 Cinéfondation and Short Films Jury. This great poet of contemporary Africa will follow in the footsteps of illustrious directors such as Abbas Kiarostami, Jane Campion, Michel Gondry, Hou Hsiao-hsien and Martin Scorsese.

Born in Mauritania but brought up in Mali and trained in filmmaking in the Soviet Union – at the Moscow VGIK –

The official poster of the 2015 Cannes Film Festival

The official poster of the 2015 Cannes Film Festival

Abderrahmane Sissako crosses cultures and continents. His work is imbued with a distinct strain of humanism and social consciousness and explores the complex relations between North and South as well as the fate of a much-beleaguered Africa.

The Game, directed by Sissako during his final year at Film School, was presented at La Semaine de la Critique in 1991, followed two years later by the medium-length Octobre, at Un Certain Regard. Life on Earth and Waiting for Happiness, both featured in the Directors’ Fortnight in 1998 and Un Certain Regard in 2002, thus firmly establishing the director on the international scene. Bamako, a political

This year, Mauritanian director Abderrahmane Sissako returns for the 68th Festival (13-24 May), where he will serve as President of the Cinéfondation and Short Films Jury.

This year, Mauritanian director Abderrahmane Sissako returns for the 68th Festival (13-24 May), where he will serve as President of the Cinéfondation and Short Films Jury.

parable caught between anger and utopianism, presented Out of Competition in 2006, was followed by Timbuktu in Competition in 2014. This vibrant fictional protest against religious fundamentalism was the first Mauritanian work to be nominated for Best Foreign Film at the Oscars.

The African director chooses to combat the ominous climate of current events with the power of art and his conviction. “I would never want to make a film that somebody else could make, and I want to see films that I would never make. What’s important to me is the cinema of anonymity – addressing the conflicts but above all the suffering endured by anonymous people – empowering them and making them visible, testifying to their courage and their beauty.

The President of the Cinéfondation and Short Films Jury and the four figures from the arts world accompanying him will award three prizes to films submitted by Film Schools to the Cinéfondation Selection, as well as the Short Film Palme d’or – to be presented during the Festival’s closing ceremony on Sunday 24 May 2015 in the salle Buñuel.

To mark its 18th year, the Cinéfondation Selection has chosen 18 films (14 works of fiction and four animations), from among the 1,600 works submitted this year by film schools from all four corners of the globe. 16 countries from four continents are represented. Over a third of the films selected come from schools taking part for the first time, and it is also the first time that a Spanish film school has seen one of its films reach the selection stage. There is a strong showing from Europe once again, with 11 out of the 18 films selected. The films in competition are:

Behzad AZADI KOSHTARGAH

(Slaughterhouse)

24’  Art University of Tehran
Iran
Mateo BENDESKY EL SER MAGNÉTICO

(The Magnetic Nature)

 17’ Universidad del Cine (FUC)
Argentina
Pippa BIANCO  SHARE 11’ AFI’s Directing Workshop for Women
USA
Simon CARTWRIGHT MANOMAN 11’ National Film and Television School
United Kingdom
Ian GARRIDO LÓPEZ VICTOR XX 20’ ESCAC
Spain
 Maria GUSKOVA VOZVRASHENIE ERKINA

(The Return of Erkin)

 28’ High Courses for Scriptwriters and Film Directors
Russia
Félix HAZEAUX
Thomas NITSCHE
Edward NOONAN
Franck PINA
Raphaëlle PLANTIER
LEONARDO  6’ MOPA (ex Supinfocom Arles)
France
Ignacio JURICIC MERILLÁN LOCAS PERDIDAS

(Lost Queens)

 28’ Carrera de Cine y TV Universidad de Chile
Chile
Sofie KAMPMARK TSUNAMI  7’ The Animation Workshop
Denmark
Tomáš KLEIN
Tomáš MERTA
RETRIEVER  23’ FAMU Prague
Czech Republic
Aurélien PEILLOUX LES CHERCHEURS

(The Wheel of Emotions)

 32’ La Fémis
France
Eliza PETKOVA ABWESEND

(Absent)

 13’ Deutsche Film & Fernsehakademie (dffb)
Germany
Miki POLONSKI ASARA REHOVOT MEA ETSIM

(Ten Buildings Away)

 25’ Minshar for Art
Israel
Maksim SHAVKIN 14 STEPS  37’ Moscow School of New Cinema
Russia
Héctor SILVA NÚÑEZ ANFIBIO

(Amphibian)

 15’ EICTV
Cuba
Salla SORRI AINAHAN NE PALAA

(To Return Until)

 17’ Aalto University, ELO Film School Helsinki
Finland
Laura VANDEWYNCKEL HET PARADIJS

(Paradise)

 6’ RITS School of Arts Brussels
Belgium
Qiu YANG RI GUANG ZHI XIA

(Under the Sun)

 19’ The VCA, Film & TV School, Melbourne University
Australia