HELENA, Mont. – Montana will be represented in France next week as the Cannes Film Festival opens with one film shot partly in Montana and another by a Montana filmmaker.
“Wildlife,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, will screen starting on Wednesday. It is the only American film selected for Critics’ Week and will be the first screening of the week.
“Festivals are great exposure for films made in Montana or by our talented filmmakers,” said Montana Film Commissioner Allison Whitmer. “To be selected for screening at Cannes is an honor itself, but to be the only American film screening during Critics’ Week is an additional distinction that speaks to the quality of the work being done here.”
Adapted from Richard Ford’s 1990 novel of the same name, “Wildlife” is the story of a family crisis in which Joe Brinson, the 14-year-old narrator, watches his parents’ marriage fall apart after his father brings the family to Montana in search of economic opportunity. The film is directed by Paul Dano and stars Carey Mulligan and Jake Gyllenhaal.
Shot partly on location in and around Livingston, the city transformed into 1960s Great Falls for the film. Sets even included a period-correct fire camp.
Critics’ Week at the Cannes Film Festival focuses on new talent and includes only the first or second feature films by each director selected to participate.
Also screening at the festival is “Rainmaker,” a short film about eating disorders and motherhood written and produced by Missoula filmmaker Katherine Cronyn. It will be featured during the short film showcase. “Rainmaker” received a Big Sky Film Grant from the Montana Film Office.
The Cannes Film Festival is May 8–19 in Cannes, France.