Director, screenwriter and producer Todd Haynes will receive the Pardo d’onore Manor award at the upcoming Locarno Festival. His latest film Wonderstruck will be screened in company with Poison, one of the featured titles in Locarno70, the sidebar dedicated to celebrating the Festival’s 70th anniversary.
At the 1991 Locarno Festival Todd Haynes’ debut feature Poison was one of 19 movies contending for the top award of the Pardo d’oro. Made after a series of eye-catching shorts, the film, based on the novels of Jean Genet, set the keynotes of the director’s style. In subsequent years Haynes has directed Julianne Moore in Safe (1995), Far from Heaven (nominated for 4 Academy Awards in 2002) and Wonderstruck (2017), and Cate Blanchett in the episodic Bob Dylan biopic I’m Not There (2007) and Carol (nominated for 6 Academy Awards in 2015).
Haynes’ film Poison will be part of the sidebar Locarno70, the exclusive program of films with which Locarno will commemorate its 70th anniversary through a selection of 11 first features presented at the Festival. Over its seventy years, Locarno has had the merit and the good fortune to launch many important careers: from Éric Rohmer with Le signe du lion (1962), to Tres Tristes Tigres (1968) by Raoul Ruiz, via the ferocious irony of Marco Ferreri in El Pisito (1959) and the destabilizing family portrait in Der siebente Kontinent (1989) by Michael Haneke. The Festival has always been fertile terrain for breaking with the past or upsetting convention, as witnessed by two other milestones included in the program, Al-momia (1969) by the Egyptian Chadi Abdel Salam, in a newly restored print, and Hallelujah the Hills (1963) by Adolfas Mekas. Todd Haynes will be joined in Locarno by Aleksandr Sokurov, Catherine Breillat, Sabiha Sumar, Villi Hermann and Alina Marazzi.
Carlo Chatrian, Artistic Director of the Locarno Festival: “In his seven feature films to date Todd Haynes has shaped out an original universe in which his familiarity with U.S. and European cinema, his passion for the films of Sirk and Fassbinder, go hand in glove with a modern sensibility. His characters – often with extraordinary performances by the female leads – bring back the magic of great cinema, of art that achieves the sublimation of reality without lapsing into disenchantment. His latest, splendid film Wonderstruck is another fine example, a journey into a cabinet of curiosities where fear and desire merge in the accuracy of a twofold historical reconstruction.”
The 70th Locarno Festival will be held from August 2 to 12, 2017.