Piazza Grande 2019: Opening and Closing Night Films
Magari, the debut from Italian director and producer Ginevra Elkann, will be the main feature on the big screen on Wednesday 7 August, ushering in the 72nd edition of the Locarno Film Festival. The 11-day event will close on Saturday 17 August with the awards ceremony, followed by Tabi no Owari Sekai no Hajimari (To the Ends of the Earth) by Japanese director, screenwriter and author Kiyoshi Kurosawa.
The opening ceremony of the 72nd Locarno Film Festival will be held in Piazza Grande on 7 August, featuring the world premiere of Magari, presented by director Ginevra Elkann, joined for the occasion by the film’s Italian stars Alba Rohrwacher and Riccardo Scamarcio. A Franco-Italian co-production, the picture portrays the childhood of three children of divorced parents in the early 1980s. The cast includes Céline Sallette, Brett Gelman, Milo Roussel, Ettore Giustiniani, Oro De Commarque e Benjamin Baroche. As producer with her company Asmara Films, Ginevra Elkann was behind a number of recent quality titles such as Land (2018) by Babak Jalali, White Shadow (2013) by Noaz Deshe and Cloro (2015) by Lamberto Sanfelice, and also distributed – with Good Films – Anime Nere (2014) di Francesco Munzi and Non essere cattivo (2015) by Claudio Caligari. She directed a short film, Vado a Messa (2005), that was selected for the 62nd Venice Film Festival.
The Festival will wrap up with the awards ceremony on the night of Saturday 17 August, followed by the international premiere of Tabi no Owari Sekai no Hajimari (To the Ends of the Earth) by J-Thriller master Kiyoshi Kurosawa. This year’s Locarno Film Festival will take a bow with one of today’s greatest Japanese filmmakers: after his celebrated early hits such as Cure (1997), Kairo (2001) and Shokuzai (Penance, 2012) – plus the Cannes Festival selection Kishibe no tabi (Journey to the Shore, 2015) and Sanpo suru shinryakusha (Before We Vanish, 2017) – Kurosawa has again cast former J-pop singer Atsuko Maeda, who previously appeared in Sebunsu kôdo (Seventh Code, 2013) as well as in the film Sanpo suru shinryakusha (Before We Vanish) mentioned above, alongside actors Ryo Kase, Shôta Sometani, Adiz Radjabovand and Tokio Emoto. Filmed in Uzbekistan, Tabi no Owari Sekai no Hajimari (To the Ends of the Earth) blends a dreamlike register with burlesque as it follows variety travel show presenter Yoko and her team to the far-flung reaches of the ancient Silk Road, on a mission to catch a legendary fish.
Lili Hinstin, Artistic Director of the Locarno Film Festival: “From the promising debut of a young European filmmaker with roots in France, Italy and the UK to the latest work from the most important Japanese director working today, the Locarno Film Festival maps out its overarching mission from opening to closing night: to discover the talents of tomorrow and to follow established masters as they take on new and unexpected challenges”.
Hosting an audience of up to 8,000, Piazza Grande is the heart of the Festival and its prestigious showcase, bringing together Locarno’s diverse audience night after night to watch movies on one of Europe’s biggest open-air screens. The sidebar also offers two prizes: The Prix du Public UBS, an audience prize worth 30,000 Swiss francs, and the Variety Piazza Grande Award, given by the U.S. film magazine’s critics attending Locarno to a film distinguished by artistic merit and commercial potential.
The full program of the 2019 Festival will be announced at the press conference on 17 July.
The 72nd Locarno Film Festival will take place from 7 to 17 August 2019.
by Ginevra Elkann
With Riccardo Scamarcio, Alba Rohrwacher, Milo Roussel, Ettore Giustiniani, Oro De Commarque, Céline Sallette, Benjamin Baroche and Brett Gelman
Production: Wildside with Rai Cinema
Produced by Lorenzo Mieli and Mario Gianani with Lorenzo Gangarossa for Wildside
Co-produced by Iconoclast eTribus P Films
World Sales: Rai Com
Tabi no Owari Sekai no Hajimari (To the Ends of the Earth)
by Kiyoshi Kurosawa
With Atsuko Maeda, Ryo Kase, Shôta Sometani, Adiz Radjabov and Tokio Emoto
Production: Loaded Films Ltd., Tokyo Theatres Inc.
Coproduction: King Records, National Agency Uzbekkino, Doha Film Institute, Hakuhodo DY Holdings, Asahi Shimbun Newspaper, TBS Radio
World Sales: Free Stone Productions Co., Ltd.