The Cannes Classics
Glasgow Film Festival loves nothing better than seeing a classic film restored to the big screen and looking as good (or sometimes better) as the day on which it was first released. Bertrand Tavernier's Death Watch, John Huston's The African Queen and West Side Story have all been sparkling, breathtaking Festival treats in GFT 1 over the past couple of years.
Cannes has all the resources and prestige to gather together the finest new restorations each year. In 2004 they established Cannes Classics as a space within the Official Festival for re-discovered and restored films from out of the past. The section looks better than ever this year with thirteen features including a restored version of Sergio Leone's gangster epic Once Upon a Time in America that includes twenty-five minutes of extra footage that was part of Leone's original vision for the film. Robert De Niro, Elizabeth McGovern, Jennifer Connelly, producer Arnon Milchan and members of the Leone family will all be in Cannes for a restoration overseen by Martin Scorsese.
The impressive guest list also includes Roman Polanski and Nastassja Kinski for the restoration of their film Tess (1979) and director Agnes Varda with her nouvelle vague classic Cleo From 5 to 7 (1962). Other classics back in the limelight include Alfred Hitchcock's The Ring (1927) with a concert from musician Stephen Horne, a 50th anniversary salute to David Lean's Lawrence of Arabia, a shiny new print of Steven Spielberg's Jaws (1975), Keisuke Kinoshita’s The Ballad of Narayama (1958), Roberto Rossellini’s Viaggio in Italia (1953) with Ingrid Bergman and George Sanders, and Andrei Konchalovsky's Runaway Train with Jon Voight which screened at the very first Cannes I ever attended in 1986. What do you mean that was before you were born?
It will come as no surprise that Glasgow-based distributor Park Circus are involved with at least a couple of those restorations, namely Lawrence of Arabia and The Runaway Train.
If there are any of the Cannes Classics that are your personal favourites or something you have always wanted to see then just let us know and we'll see what we can do about bringing it to Glasgow. The only problem now is with so many tempting classics in the Festival it will be difficult to drag yourself away and watch something brand new.
Co-director, Glasgow Film Festival