A record number of Flemish productions and co-productions have been invited to the 35th edition of the Montreal World Film Festival. In addition to the premieres of Geoffrey Enthoven’s Come As You Are and Bavo Defurne’s North Sea Texas, which had been announced earlier, Montreal confirmed the selection of feature documentary Epilogue, as well as five short films and two minority co-productions with Flanders.

Still from Lenny Van Wesemael's short Dancing With TravoltaWith its total of ten Flemish (co)productions, Montreal has plumped for bold, new and emerging talent from Flanders. No less than five shorts are to debut: the Cannes awarded Swimsuit 46 by Wannes Destoop, Cannes selected Bento Monogatari by Pieter Dirkx, Kevin Meul’s debut The Extraordinary Life of Rocky, Lenny Van Wesemael’s Dancing with Travolta and Mathias Verleyen’s short documentary Sous la Peau (Underneath the Skin).

Come As You Are (aka Hasta la vista) by Geoffrey Enthoven and North Sea Texas by Bavo Defurne are two new Flemish features invited to the festival, to be presented in World Competition and First Films World Competition respectively.

Enthoven is the only director of the selected Flemish films in Montreal who, with films such as The Only One, Happy Together and The Over the Hill Band, has already had films screened at previous editions of the festival. Come As You Are, however, is his first film in Competition in Montreal, where it is receiving its world premiere. The film follows in the footsteps of such past Grand Prize of the Americas winners from Flanders as Ben X (2008) and Oxygen (2008). You can read more about Geoffrey Enthoven in our Flanders (i) magazine.

North Sea Texas will debut internationally at Montreal. In the First Films World Competition, Bavo Defurne’s feature debut is competing for the Golden, Silver or Bronze Zenith Award. Sales agent for North Sea Texas is Wavelength Pictures, which was also on board for Defurne’s earlier shorts such as Camp-fire and Sailor.

Philippe de Pierpont’s She’s Not Crying, She’s Singing, starring Erika Sainte and Marijke Pinoy, is also screening in the First Films Competition. Flemish co-producer is Ellen De Waele of Serendipity Films. De Waele also has a second film in Montreal: the touching documentary Epilogue by Manno Lanssens, which is selected for the Documentaries of the World section. Earlier this year, Epilogue was awarded with a Special Mention at the Visions du Réel documentary festival in Switzerland. The film will have its North American premiere in Montreal. Read more about Manno Lanssens' documentary in our Flanders (i) magazine.

Finally, the minority Flemish co-production Karla’s Arrival by Koen Suidgeest was also selected for the Documentaries of the World section. Producer is Daniel De Valck of Cobra Films.

The Montreal World Film Festival is the most important film festival in the French speaking world after Cannes. One of the goals of the festival is to encourage cultural diversity and understanding among nations.

Of the selected films, The Extraordinary life of Rocky, Dancing with Travolta, She’s Not Crying, She’s Singing, Epilogue, Come As You Are, Karla’s Arrival, and North Sea Texas were supported by the Flanders Audiovisual Fund (VAF). Sous la peau was also supported by the fund through its VAF Wildcard programme which is aimed at giving recently graduated filmmaking talent the chance to embark on a first professional project.

Published on Tuesday 2 August 2011

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