The First Rendezvous with French Cinema festival took place in Singapore from December 8 to 13. Organised by Unifrance, Institut Français and Alliance Française de Singapour, the festival helped promote the latest French films to International and Asian audiences. Over 20 films were screened at four venues: Golden Village Vivocity, Shaw Theatres Lido, The Cathay Cineplex cinemas as well as the Alliance Française Theatre.
(Picture above: Artistic delegation, L to R: Antoine de Clermont-Tonnerre -président of Unifrance, Mme Carole Bouquet, Stéphane Rybojad director, Ismaël Ferroukhi director, Gilles Paquet-Brenner director, Fred Cavayé director, Rithy Panh director, Catherine Dussard producer, Mathieu Demy director and actor, Pio Marmaï actor, Rémi Bezançon director.)
As official Film Industry Sponsor, Angénieux was prominently in attendance, showing its commitment to French cinema, demonstrating its cinema lenses for high-quality filmmaking, and supporting Singapore’s cinema student community. Angénieux zoom lenses were used on the production of many of the films selected for the festival, including Un Heureux Evenement / A Happy Event (Director of Photography: Antoine Monod), Sarah’s Key (Pascal Ridao), The Well Digger’s Daughter (Jean-François Robin), The Monk (Patrick Blossier), Free Men (Jérôme Almeras), Beloved (Rémy Chevrin), and The Minister (Julien Hirsch).
Singapore is becoming an international media hub and offers several degree programs for cinema students. Angénieux presented its zoom lenses to students at master classes organised at Ngee Ann Polytechnic and Nanyang Technological University School of Art, Design and Media.
During the master classes, Remi Bezançon (Director), Pio Marmaï (Actor) and Antoine Monod (DP) presented their movie A Happy Event and answered general questions.
Antoine Monod shared his experiences using Angenieux zoom lenses:
“I immediately accepted Angenieux’s proposal to present my experience to future cinema professionals. It was the occasion to show exacting pictures and to explain technical and artistic aspects of my way of working. On all my latest movies, most of the time I’ve used an Angenieux Optimo 24-290 that perfectly matches with the best prime lenses. This choice allows me to have permanently on set the longest focals that I particularly appreciate. Moreover, from a practical and economical point of view, a zoom lens allows the second unit to be autonomous to shoot without the need to rent extra equipments, which is really appreciated by productions! On Coach, one of my last movies, I used exclusively the lightweight Optimo 15-40 and Optimo 28-76. They gave us opportunity to improvise on set while keeping the highest image quality. I’ve also just finished the 3D short film Eve with a set of two matching Optimo DP 16-42 zooms. We wouldn’t have been able to make this movie without them. 3D requires many very precise camera adjustments each time we change the lens. That can last up to one hour. Thanks to Optimo 3D-ready zooms, the focal length change is nearly instantaneous. We can double number of takes in one day.”
About the First Rendezvous with French Cinema Festival
Organised by uniFrance (the association responsible for the promotion of French cinema internationally) the Institut Français and the Alliance Française de Singapour, the First Rendezvous with French Cinema festival was organised to promote the best of contemporary French cinema to international and Asian audiences and, in partnership with Asia Television Forum (ATF), Asia’s leading content market, to offer a business platform and networking opportunity for French and regional cinema industry players.
The festival paid homage to Carole Bouquet, who led the delegation of actors and directors in Singapore for the occasion, through a retrospective segment featuring five of her films. French cinema icon Catherine Deneuve also took part in the festival to present her latest film Beloved / Les Bien-Aimés.
At the opening ceremony, Angénieux’s égérie (fashion icon) Linda Carriel was dressed by French couturier Julien Fournié and jeweller Swarovski, the festival’s official fashion sponsor. Whenever you see a crowd of cinematographers allegedly testing lenses in the Angénieux booth at any worldwide trade show (IBC, NAB, Cannes), Linda is sure to be there posing for the cameras in her latest fashions.
Additional Interesting facts:
Unifrance promotes French cinema throughout the world. Created in 1949, Unifrance is under the supervision of the CNC (Centre national du cinéma et de l’image animée). The association has nearly 600 members: producers of feature films and shorts, exporters, sales agents, directors, actors, authors (screenwriters) and talent agents.
Alliance Française de Singapour
The Alliance Française de Singapour, founded in 1949, is a non-profit educational organization. With headquarters in Paris, it is one of 1,085 Alliances Françaises worldwide and serves 6,000 students every year. It is Singapore’s premier French language school as well as a cultural center. bringing together artists from around the world.