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San Sebastian 2011

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San Sebastian 2011 Empty San Sebastian 2011

Post by Admin on Fri Sep 23, 2011 9:59 pm

The anecdotes of San Sebastian
A stranger gets into the cabin of Julie Delpy, Michael Fassbender arrives on a motorcycle and Glenn Close will pintxos

EFE, Mateo Sancho Cardiel
French director Julie Delpy at a press conference he gave in San Sebastian after the screening of his film 'Le Skylab', which competes in the official section.

San Sebastian EFE

Film festivals come the stars to people, but this year in San Sebastian all is especially mundane, with Michael Fassbender arriving by motorcycle to the event, Glenn Close changing the great restaurants for a few tapas and Frances McDormand buying peaches.

As the great French film diva Catherine Deneuve arrives and fails to present the film after its discoverer, Jacques Demy (and has postponed his meeting with San Sebastian twice), it seems that the whims of a star this year have been the only positive cut the festival.

Michael Fassbender, the actor wanted the festival especially after displaying her charms in the film Shame, finally made ​​an appearance late in the morning in San Sebastian, having taken as no option to get the boat or plane, but the bike.

From Mickey Rourke in Rumble Fish and like Marlon Brando in The Wild One, never a motorcycle had pulled many hormones staff that awaits your arrival but his film has already burned all their projections in the Zinemaldia.

Another star that prevented the plane, which is a dish of your choice, was Julie Delpy who arrived with an anecdote from Paris, where he took the night train to the nearby French town of Biarritz to reach San Sebastian submit his Le Skyalab.

In the early hours of the morning, her face laughing justified sleep because a man had entered the compartment by mistake and mistook her for his bride, arriving to grope in the dark bed in which the protagonist of White was sleeping peacefully. Posts to be wrong ...

Glenn Close, one of the biggest stars of the festival with the Donostia Prize, canceled his reservation at one of the best restaurants in San Sebastian because he preferred to leave San Sebastian tapas as pro. San Sebastian was in a short time and preferred to mingle with his people.

The jury, however, have time for everything. Thus, Frances McDormand have seen it by choosing the best peaches in a fruit shop near the Kursaal, while his companion Sophie Okonedo deliberations, the star of Hotel Rwanda (2004), was holding the umbrella, that something has Note that the star of Fargo is the group's president be elected by the Concha de Oro

But to discuss without being disturbed, the jury also go to the famous restaurant Arzak, where he seized McDormand Spanish director Álex de la Iglesia for the cell to stop tweeting once. As he recovered, he told his followers the story.

Despite this act of discipline, the official jury sometimes late as every Tom, Dick, to the point of delaying the screening of one of the films in competition, with the resulting anger of the audience.

Not that is anything new there, but Julian Schnabel for years that passed through the festival and, while no longer carries the pairings that designing its former partner, now prefers to wear overalls painter, white socks with a picture of the Virgin and a smartphone handset customized with a vintage effect.

In addition, interviews to promote his film Miral, "because it's worth it" because it is not in the festival program, gives them lying on the floor of the terrace of Maria Cristina.

Definitely, the glamor is in tatters.

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Post by Admin on Sat Sep 24, 2011 9:31 pm

Michael Fassbender, Antonio Banderas Brighten Up San Sebastian Film Festival
5:32 PM PDT 9/23/2011 by Pamela Rolfe

Michael Fassbender THR Portrait - P 2011
Fabrizio Maltese for THR
The "Shame" actor arrived on a motorcycle to promote his new film, and Banderas showed a sneak preview of "Puss in Boots."

SAN SEBASTIAN, Spain – Michael Fassbender, Antonio Banderas and Spanish heartthrob Miguel Angel Silvestre turned up the star power in San Sebastian Friday with throngs waiting to catch glimpses of the actors.
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The Hollywood Reporter Correspondent Pamela Rolfe Wins Journalism Award

Decked in black bikerware, Fassbender arrived on a motorcycle and generously greeted crowds waiting outside the Maria Cristina Hotel for his arrival. The star of one of the festival’s most talked-about films gave interviews with Spanish media to promote Shame.

Banderas, whose The Skin I live In is presently in theaters in Spain, came to town to present a 20-minute promotional peek at Dreamworks 3D Puss in Boots, featuring his voice for the animated cat.

Silvestre, one of Spain’s hottest young actors, was in town for the world premiere of Eduardo Chapero-Jackson’s thriller Verbo—which screened Thursday night in the giant screened Velodrome.

Elsewhere in the festival, Spain’s Apaches Entertainment, which has Omtriders. Extraterrestial and Verbo playing at San Sebastian announced a newly-created low-budget label Mapache, focused on mainstream, Spanish-language fare intended for the domestic market and a new TV production branch, Apachete.

Apaches also gave more details about it’s upcoming English-language Windows. Directed by Nacho Vigalondo and produced by Apaches and Antena 3 Films, thefilm will be sold internationally by Wild Bunch and is currently casting. Originally budgeted at $4 million, the thriller has grown in production design.

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Post by Admin on Tue Oct 11, 2011 2:03 pm

A Blog Mostly About Film

October 11, 2011 Ten Highlights of the 2011 San Sebastian Film Festival

by Matthew Turner

Be still, my beating heart!

I’ve been going up to Edinburgh every year for the Edinburgh Film Festival since 2001 but until four weeks ago I had never been to an international film festival. Every year, when the San Sebastian Film Festival rolls around (just a few weeks before the London Film Festival but, crucially, not clashing with anything else) and fellow film reviewers come back raving about it I am consumed with jealousy, so this year I thought I’d take the plunge and go. I left it all till the very last minute (including a nail-biting emergency passport renewal) but I got a great hotel recommendation from a friend, and the nice lady at the festival’s travel bureau sorted me out with a cheap flight, so I was good to go. Needless to say, I’m glad I did. It’s a wonderful festival in a beautiful city and I will be going back every year for the rest of my life. After the jump, my ten highlights from this year’s Donostia (that’s what they call San Sebastian in San Sebastian).

1. Arrugas

I saw 24 films over eight days and Arrugas was far and away my favourite. Based on an award-winning graphic novel by Paco Roca, Arrugas (which means wrinkles) is an animated drama about Emilio, who’s suffering from the early stages of Alzheimer’s. Shunted off to a care home when his family can no longer look after him, Emilio gradually strikes up a friendship with his roommate Miguel, who’s like the care-home equivalent of a prison fixer. And when Emilio’s deteriorating condition threatens to see him moved upstairs to the feared top floor (from which no-one ever returns), Miguel and Emilio’s other care home friends rally round to help hide the seriousness of his Alzheimer’s from the officials. The film is beautifully animated and superbly written, treating a genuinely moving and occasionally deeply upsetting story with warmth and humour. My enthusiastic tweeting got spotted by the film’s producers and they told me they are trying to secure a UK release for it, so fingers crossed that somebody picks it up over here. I was also delighted to find the graphic novel (in Spanish – sadly it doesn’t seem to be available in English yet) at the delegate centre fnac stand, though I confess I haven’t read it yet.

2. Man wearing tapas and meeting Miss Bala at the Opening Night Party

I’d heard great things about San Sebastian’s opening night parties (“tapas hanging from the walls” was one claim) and it didn’t disappoint; at least if all you want from a party is excited festival chatter, the chance to spot a celeb or two and a steady stream of delicious nibbles. The particular highlight in this last regard was a man WEARING tapas, walking around in a sandwich board with food-bearing cocktail sticks stuck into it. Here is a short video of me marvelling at the Man Wearing Tapas, taken by The Guardian’s Peter Bradshaw. Later on, when all sensible British film journalists had retired to their hotel rooms, I wandered round a corner and discovered the VIP area, where I a) brushed past Clive Owen, b) exchanged email addresses with Miss Bala (aka Stephanie Sigman, star of the excellent Miss Bala) and c) hoovered up many delicious pastries, which they somehow hadn’t gotten around to serving in the non-VIP area.

Stephanie Sigman in Miss Bala

3. Pintxos with journos

Whenever I told anybody that I was going to San Sebastian – film journos and non-film journos alike – they unfailingly said the same thing: “OH MY GOD, THE FOOD IS AMAZING!”

And my God, they were right. Pretty much every bar I went into was laid out like this. Now, having lived in Madrid for three years I thought I knew a thing or two about tapas and that “pintxos” were basically just Basque for tapas. What I wasn’t prepared for was the experimental nature of the food – each little delicacy was like a work of art, with weird-looking combinations of things all stacked up on top of each other like Scooby Snacks. It was also fun meeting San Sebastian veterans who would eagerly drag you to their favourite food places. Incredibly, I only had one sit-down meal the entire eight days I was there, proving that it’s possible to exist entirely on pintxos alone. My personal favourites were a) the tortilla de bacalao (smoked cod omelette) at Bar Cepas (Bradshaw filmed me reviewing their equally good meat-stuffed peppers here), b) creamed cod wrapped in grilled red pepper and coated in a light batter at the bar opposite the Principal cinema and c) a sort of crispy cone stuffed with fresh crab meat, also at the bar opposite the Principal.

4. Midnight press screening of Either Way

I’d been told that San Sebastian was a very relaxed film festival but I wasn’t quite sure what that meant. I’d assumed that the press screening schedule would be much the same as London and Edinburgh, i.e. tonnes of inevitably clashing films with only one screening each, showing between 9am and 5pm each day. In fact, the press screening schedule presented almost no problems at all, with each of the main films receiving at least two press screenings, sometimes on the same day (Don’t want to get up for the 9am screening of opening night film Intruders? Come to the 11am screening instead!). Also, the press screenings continued up until midnight, even if the midnight screenings weren’t quite so well attended. As it was, I had one of the nicest screening experiences I can remember, sitting in a beautiful, mostly empty, cinema (the aforementioned Principal) at midnight, watching a charming Icelandic film called Either Way, about two men doing road-works in the middle of nowhere. Almost nothing happens (at one point one of them gets an upsetting letter, but that’s as action-packed as it got) and yet I thoroughly enjoyed it. It looked beautiful too. No word yet on a UK distributor yet, but you never know.

5. The scenery

If you ask me, all film festivals should be held in coastal towns. And if not all, then at least more. One of the biggest pleasures of San Sebastian, for me, was getting to walk over this bridge several times a day on my way to the press centre and main screening venue (the Kursaal), which was positioned here. You could walk out of a film and be less than thirty seconds away from views like this and this. I mean, really, you don’t get that in Edinburgh.

6. Fassbender Frenzy Reaches Fever Pitch

If you’re on Twitter and following lots of film reviewing types you might have spotted this tweet from @PeterBradshaw1: “Heterogay hysteria for Michael Fassbender at #SanSebastian2011 has risen to new levels. He’s coming here from Barcelona on his motorbike”. Hysteria is something of an understatement. Seasoned industry professionals, including producers, journalists and PRs, were giddy with excitement about possibly getting to meet Michael Fassbender and I don’t mind admitting I was among their number. Sadly, I haven’t been able to find on the internet that photo of him arriving on his motorbike in full leather gear that was on all the front pages but trust me, Fassbender fans, it’s out there somewhere. Sadly, although I did get to stand within touching distance (and talked to actor Liam Cunningham, who’d come along for moral support and free booze), I bottled out of actually talking to him. Ah well.

7. The Keler tent

All film festivals should have a Keler tent. Acting on a tip-off from Peter Bradshaw, I requested an entry card from the press office and was granted access to the tent, which had been set up within a stone’s throw from the Kursaal, right by the sea. Incredibly, they served free food, beer and coffee all day until around midnight or so, every night. Now, normally, you’d think, ‘Oh, free beer – I bet it’s horrible’, but no, it was bloody good beer. I’m not much of a lager drinker by nature (I’m a Guinness man), but it really was delicious. Sadly, it is currently unavailable in the UK, but hopefully that will change [I assume my complimentary case of Keler is in the mail? ed]. The food was great too, so naturally word of the Keler tent’s wonders spread like wildfire and soon it was the festival’s unofficial hang-out with all manner of famous faces popping in.

Keler 18 - the cool, crisp taste of the Basque country. Mmm, refreshing!

8. The rain and Shame

To be fair, the weather in San Sebastian wasn’t perfect ALL the time. In fact, for the first three or four days it was downright miserable. Still, I’d been told that the walk along the Concha Bay was one of the main things to do in San Sebastian, so when I realised that the venue for Steve McQueen’s Shame (featuring a frequently full-frontal Fassbender) was on the other side of the bay I thought I’d take a leisurely stroll and take in the sights. Unfortunately, it was like walking through a cloud and I got completely drenched, despite being armed with a smallish umbrella, but the scenery was so gorgeous that it was totally worth it. The film was great too, although I learned a valuable lesson, which was: Never Sit Behind The Woman Doing The Electronic Subtitles (imagine watching a film and having someone sitting in front of you with an open laptop for the entire film. Annoying).

9. Hanging out with the Wild Bill gang

As a result of hanging out in the Keler tent, I met the cast and crew of Wild Bill, including director Dexter Fletcher, lead actor Charlie Creed-Miles, actress Charlotte Spencer and producers Tim Cole and Sam Tromans. The film (which I loved) ended up winning an audience award and the reception to the public screenings had been positively rapturous, so they were all on something of a high and a joy to hang out with. Inevitably, this lead to a boozy night of celebrating during which we attempted to stalk Michael Fassbender, only to discover that he had, rather suspiciously, gone to bed early. (I saw the two Spanish actresses from La Voz Dormida leaving his hotel at 2am, but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence). Also, well, this happened. What struck me more than anything was their genuinely excited reaction to their own film – Dexter and Charlie in particular were happily quoting their favourite lines at each other like they’d just seen it for the first time and couldn’t wait to tell everyone about it. I’ve never seen that before.

10. Salma Hayek’s striptease in Americano

This is presumably self-explanatory, although, sadly, there’s no YouTube clip as yet, so Salma fans will have to try and see it at the London Film Festival instead. I hadn’t read up on Americano beforehand so I didn’t know anything at all about it except that it was directed by Mathieu Demy (son of Jacques Demy, who was the subject of a retrospective at San Sebastian this year) and that it was at the LFF. There’s no list of credits at the beginning of the film either, so it was quite the shock when Salma Hayek showed up at around the 55 minute mark and performed a smoking hot striptease while singing Rufus Wainwright’s I’m Going To A Town. Needless to say, the film never quite tops that scene and the rest of the film is merely so-so.

And finally, here’s my festival top ten, complete with links to my reviews, where they exist. Note that I haven’t included films I saw in the UK beforehand, such as Tyrannosaur, or films that I didn’t manage to see while I was there, like The Artist.

1. Arrugas

2. Wild Bill

3. Martha Marcy May Marlene

4. Where Do We Go Now?

5. Shame

6. La Voz Dormida

7. Either Way

8. Miss Bala

9. The Deep Blue Sea

10. George Harrison: Living in the Material World

Oh, and did I mention I sat next to Frances McDormand?

Matthew Turner (@FilmFan1971) is the film reviewer for His tweets from the 2011 San Sebastian Film Festival have been archived here.

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