Artistic director says US focus on local market may have contributed to Venice missing out on the new films.
Alberto Barbera, artistic director of the Venice Film Festival (Aug 27-Sept 6), has revealed two of the movies he was unsuccessful in securing for this year’s line-up.
Speaking to ScreenDaily, Barbera said: “Two films that I wanted and didn’t get were David Fincher’s Gone Girl and Paul Anderson’s Inherent Vice - both of which have gone to New York.”
Speculating on why Venice missed out on the two titles, Barbera said: “The reasons films don’t come is not always clear - sometimes it’s because Venice is too early for their release strategies, or perhaps the studios are focusing more on a US release rather than an international one.
“I get the sense that the US is increasingly focused on domestic productions and the local market rather than international.”
Barbera also considered whether financial implications steer decision-making and added: “I’ve asked myself whether it is because the European market is decreasing in economic terms, unlike China.
“Perhaps, European festivals represent big costs without big returns. I don’t know. Nobody has ever said this to me, it’s just something I’ve been pondering.”
Venice has, however, secured Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s US feature, Birdman or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance, as its opening film.
“I knew Fox Searchlight didn’t want to take the film to Cannes because it was too early for the US release in October,” Barbera revealed.
“I kept asking and asking if could see it and Fox Searchlight eventually obliged.
“I loved it immediately - it’s complex, amusing, entertaining, with a great cast and it also shows off Alejandro’s virtuosity as a director. Perhaps, my enthusiasm helped as well but we’re very pleased to have it at the festival.”