Award-Winning Warwick Thornton Cannes Film Festival-Bound Again
Prize-winning First Nations, filmmaker Warwick Thornton is to make his Cannes Film Festival return this year, more than a decade since his first appearance in the prestigious event.
Thornton’s spiritual drama, The New Boy, has been chosen for this year’s Un Certain Regard Program. It will be the second film by the celebrated film director from Alice Springs to be showcased in Cannes after his feature film Samson & Delilah took home the Camera d’Or Award in 2009.
© Ben King, Cate Blanchett as Sister Eileen and Aswan Reid as New Boy in The New Boy
Under the Un Certain Regard Program, The New Boy is among 17 bold and innovative films by both established and up-and-coming creatives in competition.
The New Boy stars Cate Blanchett, Deborah Mailman, Wayne Blair, and newcomer Aswan Reid in the title role. It is set in 1940s Australia and follows the story of an Aboriginal orphan boy (Reid) whose arrival in a remote monastery, run by a renegade nun (Blanchett), shakes the balance between spiritual struggle and the cost of survival.
The film was shot in South Australia and got major production funding from Screen Australia’s First Nations Department in association with Screen NSW and the South Australian Film Corporation. Roadshow Films is handling distribution of the film in Australia and New Zealand.
Screen Australia hailed Thornton’s latest Cannes Film Festival selection, describing it as a celebration of his genius as a filmmaker.
Joel Pearlman, CEO of Roadshow Films, also shared his excitement over Thornton’s Cannes Film Festival return, saying
In more than two decades behind the lens, Thornton is considered one of cinema’s most treasured voices whose work has won acclaim not only in Australia but also internationally.
Apart from the Cannes Film Festival Camera d’Or in 2009, Thornton also won the Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival and the Platform Prize at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2017 for Sweet Country. Both Samson & Delilah and Sweet Country won best film at the Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA) Awards.
This year will be the 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival. It will run from May 16 to 27, 2023.
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