Alexander Payne, Nicholas Winding Refn, Asghar Farhadi and James Gray also make the competition lineup at festival
Joel and Ethan Coen’s “Inside Llewyn Davis,” Nicolas Winding Refn’s “Only God Forgives” and Alexander Payne’s “Nebraska” are among the films screening in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, director Thierry Fremaux announced on Thursday morning in Paris.
In a surprise, Steven Sobergergh’s HBO movie “Behind the Candleabra,” starring Michael Douglas as Liberace and Matt Damon as his lover Scott Thorson, was given a slot in the main competition; it was widely thought to be a prime candidate for an out-of-competition screening.
Also making the cut at the year's most prestigious festival: "Le Passe," the new film from "A Separation" director Asghar Farhadi; "The Immigrant," the first film in five years from James Gray; and "Wara No Tate" from prolific Japanese director Takashi Miike.
Roman Polanski landed two films at Cannes, the competition entry “Venus in Furs” and a special screening of “Week End of a Champion.”
Only one film directed by a woman, Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi's "Un Chateau en Italie," made the main competition lineup. A number of female directors, including Claire Denis and Sofia Coppola, will be represented in the Un Certain Regard section.
The Coen brothers, Soderbergh and Polanski are the only past Palme d'Or winners in the main competition. Payne is returning to the Croisette after a stint on the Cannes jury last year.
The Un Certain Regard section will include a couple of films directed by actors: Valeria Golino’s “Miele” and James Franco’s “As I Lay Dying.” This year’s Sundance sensation and Weinstein Company pickup, “Fruitvale Station” (formerly titled “Fruitvale”) will also receive an UCR slot.
Special screenings will include the Polanski film as well as James Toback’s “Seduced and Abandoned” and Stephen Frears’ “Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight.”
Films screening out of competition include "All Is Lost" from "Margin Call" writer-director J.C. Chandor and "Blood Ties" from French director Guillaume Canet.
The films, said Fremaux, were chosen from 1,858 films submitted to the festival.
Films that were rumored to be in the running but did not make the list, some of which may not have been ready in time for Cannes, include Steve McQueen's "Twenty Years a Slave," Corneliu Porumbolu's "Nine Minutes Interval," Ralph Fiennes' "The Invisible Woman," Jean-Luc Godard's "Goodbye to Language," Kelly Reichardt's "Night Moves" and the two Terrence Malick movies currently in post-production.
Additional titles are likely to be added to the competition slate before the beginning of the festival on May 15, as well as additional out-of-competition entries.
Though only the Coens and Soderbergh have won the Palme d'Or in the past, Refn was named the festival's best director for his last film, "Drive." Paolo Sorrentino, Francois Ozon and James Gray are among the directors who have competed at Cannes in the past.
Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby” had previously been announced as the opening-night film, while Jerome Salle’s “Zulu” will close the festival. On Wednesday, Cannes announced that Sofia Coppola’s “The Bling Ring” will open the Un Certain Regard section.
Steven Spielberg will head the main competition jury, while Danish director Thomas Vinterberg ("The Hunt") will lead the Un Certain Regard jury and Jane Campion will head the Cinefondation panel.
The festival will take place from May 15 through May 26 in the South of France. This year’s official poster, pictured above, is a shot of Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward from the little-seen 1963 movie “A New Kind of Love.”
“Behind the Candleabra,” Steven Soderbergh
“Borgman,” Alex Van Warmerdam
“Grisgris,” Mahamat-Saleh Haroun
“Heli,” Amat Escalante
“The Immigrant,” James Gray
“Inside Llewyn Davis,” Ethan Coen and Joel Coen
“Jeune et Jolie,” Francois Ozon
“Jimmy P.,” Arnaud Desplechin
“La Grande Belleza,” Paolo Sorrentino
“La Vie D’Adele,” Abdellatif Kechiche
“Le Passe,” Asghar Farhadi
“Michael Kohlhaas,” Arnaud Despallieres
“Nebraska,” Alexander Payne
“Only God Forgives,” Nicolas Winding Refn
“Soshite Chichi Ni Naru,” Kore-Eda Hirokazu
“Tian Zhu Ding,” Jia Zhangke
“Un Chateau en Italie,” Valeria Bruni-Tedeschi
“Venus in Furs,” Roman Polanski
“Wara No Tate,” Takashi Miike
Out of competition:
“All Is Lost,” J.C. Chandor
“Blood Ties,” Guillaume Canet
Un Certain Regard:
“Anonymous,” Mohammed Rasoulof
“As I Lay Dying,” James Franco
“Bends,” Flora Lau
"The Bling Ring," Sofia Coppola
“Death March,” Adolfo Alix Jr.
“Grand Central,” Rebecca Zlotowski
“Fruitvale Station,” Ryan Coogler
“La Jaula de Oro,” Diego Quemada-Diez
“Les Salauds,” Claire Denis
“L’Image Manquante,” Rithy Panh
“L’Inconnu du Lac,” Alain Guiraudie
“Miele,” Valeria Golino
“Norte, Hangganan Ng Kasaysayan,” Lav Diaz
“Omar,” Hany Abu-Assad
“Sarah Prefere La Course,” Chloe Robichaud
“Muhammad Ali’s Greatest Fight,” Stephen Frears
“Otdat Konci,” Taisia Igumentseva
“Seduced and Abandoned,” James Toback
“Stop the Pounding Heart,” Roberto Minnervini
“Week End of a Champion,” Roman Polanski
Homage to Jerry Lewis:
“Max Rose,” Daniel Noah
“Blind Detective,” Johnnie To
“Monsoon Shootout,” Amit Kumar