For the first time in decades, Paul and Francis are competing in the same event

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This year’s 77th Cannes Film Festival will mark a meeting of the New Hollywood minds in France.
Not only is George Lucas receiving the festival’s Honorary Palme d’Or, but filmmakers Francis Ford Coppola and Paul Schrader are in the official Competition for the first time in decades.
While Schrader has gone the route of Venice for his “lonely man in a room” trilogy — “First Reformed,” “The Card Counter,” and “Master Gardener” all premiered in Italy — he’s at Cannes this year with “Oh, Canada.” The lineup was confirmed this morning by Cannes festival director Thierry Frémaux.
Schrader wrote the script for 1976 Palme d’Or winner “Taxi Driver,” directed by Martin Scorsese.
Among Schrader’s last times in Cannes, his film “The Comfort of Strangers,” a moody adaptation of Ian McEwan’s psychosexual novel set in Venice, premiered Out of Competition in 1990.
Meanwhile, one of Schrader’s New Hollywood brethren, Francis Ford Coppola, is also in competition for the first time since … 1979?
Along with his lack of presence at Cannes, Coppola has not had a commercial hit in decades, either, as the filmmaker continues to push the boundaries of narrative storytelling.
While Coppola’s competition slot was previously reported prior to Thursday’s lineup unveiling, the writing was also on the walls when his pal George Lucas was tapped to receive an Honorary Palme.

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The 77th Cannes Film Festival in France this year will bring together the brightest minds from Hollywood. Not only is George Lucas winning the Honorary Palme d’Or at the festival, but for the first time in many years, Francis Ford Coppola and Paul Schrader are participating in the official Competition.

While Schrader’s “lonely man in a room” trilogy (First Reformed, The Card Counter, and Master Gardener) all had their Italian premieres, he is currently attending Cannes with “Oh, Canada.”. The lineup was verified this morning by Thierry Frémaux, the director of the Cannes festival. Starring Richard Gere, Uma Thurman, and Jacob Elordi is a contemplative drama about a tortured writer thinking back on his years as a leftist who fled to Canada to avoid being drafted into the Vietnam War. Time for a buzzy red carpet moment at Elordi! Cue the flashbulbs. The “Euphoria” breakout star was last seen attending festivals for “Priscilla” in 2023, which brought him to Venice in the midst of the strikes under an SAG-AFTRA temporary waiver.

Martin Scorsese directed the 1976 Palme d’Or winner “Taxi Driver,” which Schrader wrote the screenplay for. The Oscar-nominated writer-director hardly ever attends Cannes; “Patty Hearst,” which debuted in competition in 1988, was his last feature film. Along with this, he received an Oscar nomination in 1985 for “Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters,” which Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas executive-produced and which IndieWire named the second-best film of the 1980s the previous year. Based on Russell Banks’ novel “Foregone,” “Oh, Canada” is a drama that is currently awaiting distribution; however, fans will be keeping an eye out for it on the Croisette. One of Schrader’s final appearances at Cannes was for the somber 1990 Out of Competition premiere of “The Comfort of Strangers,” an adaptation of Ian McEwan’s psychosexual novel set in Venice.

Francis Ford Coppola, another of Schrader’s New Hollywood brethren, is competing for the first time since 1979, when he took home the Palme d’Or for “Apocalypse Now.”. Coppola also received the Palme d’Or in 1974 for “The Conversation,” his follow-up to “The Godfather” that was modeled after “Blow-Up” and placed in between the first and second parts of the film. In1996, Coppola presided over the Cannes jury and is said to have prevented David Cronenberg’s “Crash” from taking home more than a jury prize. (Cronenberg’s semiautobiographical film “The Shrouds” is also included in this year’s Cannes lineup. “Tetro” made its debut during Directors Fortnight in 2009, marking his final appearance.

The focus is on “Megalopolis,” Coppola’s first feature since “Twixt” in 2011, which she self-funded with an impressive $120 million and is still waiting for a distributor for. Coppola has so far shown the sci-fi epic starring Adam Driver, Nathalie Emmanuel, Shia LaBeouf, and Aubrey Plaza to friends and filmmakers in the United States, and initial reactions seem positive, but it remains to be seen how this film will recoup its budget. Coppola has declared “Megalopolis” to be a lifelong passion project, so it doesn’t really matter. The arthouse masterpiece, which stars Driver as an idealist named Caesar, has been dubbed “batshit crazy.” It uses novel visual effects and an unusual plot to complete its large cast in a destroyed metropolis reminiscent of New York City.

Coppola, who continues to push the limits of narrative storytelling, has not had a commercial hit in decades in addition to his absence from Cannes. Not quite the stuff of box office fantasies, but whatever. Coppola’s associates have stated that the film’s concept stems from the time of “Apocalypse Now,” the 1979 Palme winner that almost killed him during production.

Coppola’s competition spot was known before Thursday’s lineup announcement, but when his friend George Lucas was selected to receive an Honorary Palme, the signs were clearly there. Lucas is going to be there for his friend.

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