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Cinema Libre presents for the first time on DVD in the US, a unique disk featuring three films from the master filmmaker including two documentaries, Locked in Syndrome and Otaku, as well as the director's first short film, Mr. Michel's Dog.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
INTRODUCING 'The Jean-Jacques Beineix Collection'
CINEMA LIBRE ANNOUNCES FIRST OF SIX TITLES TO BE RELEASED FROM FRENCH AUTEUR: 'LOCKED IN SYNDROME' WITH 'OTAKU' AND 'MR. MICHEL'S DOG'
LOS ANGELES, CA (May 14, 2009) –After the success of Diva and Betty Blue, French director Jean-Jacques Beineix took a sabbatical from fiction to explore the real world through documentary film. Cinema Libre presents for the first time on DVD in the US, a unique disk featuring three films from the master filmmaker including two documentaries, Locked in Syndrome and Otaku, as well as the director's first short film, Mr. Michel's Dog as the first title offered in "The Jean-Jacques Beineix Collection."
Locked In Syndrome, documents the struggle of the French Elle editor Jean-Dominique Bauby, who was paralyzed in 1995 by a stroke and able to communicate only by blinking his left eye, as he dictated his memoir, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly," which has since been brought to Technicolor life by Julian Schnabel in his award-winning film of the same name. Beineix filmed Bauby in 1996 as he was working on the book with his editorial assistant, Claude Mendbill, while using the arduous process of blinking out each letter based on a special alphabet. To make the film, Beineix had to learn the alphabet and as he related to The Observer in a 1997 interview, was "surprised how much expression Bauby could express through his single working muscle." Originally made for television, the film runs 26 minutes with English sub-titles.
Beineix delves into the world of obsession with his 1994 documentary Otaku, a film that explores Japanese sub-cultures. Otaku, a term coined by a Japanese journalist, is given to Japanese youth, mainly boys, who become obsessed with a particular hobby. The 76-minute documentary offers a fascinating look at the Japanese youths' technology and toy-worshipping obsessions, who are catered to by product manufacturers. In a 1994 interview with Giovanni Fazio, Beineix explained, "Otaku-ism is a way to stay in the childhood world. They do not want to become adults...Otaku are the new pioneers of the Japanese culture, they are the product of the Nintendo revolution...They are the orphans of a civilization where the fathers have turned into merchants." The film is a prescient forecast of American youth's obsession with video games, social networking and Manga madness. The disk also includes Beineix's first short film (Le Chien de Monsieur Michel) which earned a César nomination in 1977.
Cinema Libre Studio, an independent company known for distributing controversial art house films and documentaries, will be releasing six of Beineix's films on DVD, several of which have not been released before in the U.S., in 'The Jean-Jacques Beineix Collection.' The company will also be releasing Betty Blue: The Director's Cut, screened on 35mm for the first time in U.S. theatres beginning June 12 at Cinema Village followed by a calendar house run in several cities.
Beineix started as an assistant director in France, before he directed his first short film. In 1981, he directed his first feature, Diva, a stylish thriller that became a word-of-mouth sensation eventually winning four Césars. Five years later, Betty Blue became an international cult sensation and was nominated for Best Foreign Film at both the Oscars and Golden Globes, and earned 9 César nominations. In the 90's, Beineix turned towards more socially conscious subjects, directing two documentaries as well as taking up the paintbrush. He returned to feature filmmaking in 1992 with IP5: The Island of the Pachyderms, which was the last film for renowned actor, Yves Montand and also stars Olivier Martinez (Unfaithful, S.W.A.T.). Beineix continues to produce and direct films through his Paris-based company, Cargo Films.
Additional titles to be released in 'The Jean-Jacques Beineix Collection' include:
•Roselyne and the Lions (Drama, 1989), streets July 14.
•IP5: The Island of Pachyderms (Drama, 1992), streets August 18.
•Mortal Transfer (Comedy/Thriller, 2001), streets September 22.
•The Moon in the Gutter (Drama, 1983), streets October 20.
•Betty Blue: The Director's Cut, (Drama, 1986) streets November 17.
LOCKED IN SYNDROME DVD BASICS:
TRT: 120 minutes
Street Date: 6/23/09
Languages: French and English with sub-titles
Catalog: CLS 1073
About Cinema Libre Studio:
Cinema Libre Studio is a haven for independent filmmakers with one-stop shopping for production and distribution. The company has been a leader in distributing social issue films with a full array of offerings including: acquisitions, theatrical distribution, international & television sales, grassroots outreach, digital download and post-production services. Headquartered in Los Angeles, the company is best known for distributing award-winning films that include: Outfoxed, Uncovered: The War on Iraq, The Empire in Africa, and Participant Media's Angels In The Dust. The company will release The End of Poverty? in select US theatres in September 2009. For more information, please visit www.cinemalibrestudio.com
Posted by: News Editor - June 14, 2009, 1:49 pm - PR
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