Cannes 2019: Only God Forgives director Nicolas Winding Refn hails digital medium for promoting creativity
Nicolas Winding Refn is a Cannes regular. His last three films — Drive, Only God Forgives and The Neon Demon — were screened at the festival
Cannes: At the Cannes Film Festival, where streaming giant Netflix is no longer welcome, filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn talked about the joys of working in the contentious digital medium and how its promotes creativity.
The filmmaker is presenting his upcoming Amazon series Too Old to Die Young at the annual film extravaganza, which has banned Netflix from its competition line-up after an uproar over its presence in the 2017 edition.
Refn, known for helming films such as Drive and Only God Forgives, is presenting his Amazon series Too Old to Die Young at the festival. He screened two episodes of the show at a packed house in the Grand Lumiere Theatre.
According to Deadline, after receiving a four-minute standing ovation for the series, Refn shared his views on the "beautiful domain called the internet".
"Today is year zero. The idea that streaming is a new canvas around us, it's part of the digital revolution and it flows 24 hours a day, seven days a week, if we can just tap into it and experience creativity. And it's for everyone. And this show represents the opportunities that can be done in the digital revolution of technology. I suddenly had this opportunity," the filmmaker said.
Refn then talked about his wife Lola's father filmmaker Fritz Lang, who is considered a revered figure in the European cinema.
"I said, 'What would Fritz do today?' Fritz would make a long movie. So I decided I wanted to make a 13-hour movie and it would be streamed in this beautiful domain called the internet, where you can tap into and let it flow out of you.
"From the bottom of my heart that Thierry (Fremaux) would bring this to Cannes, because it's a place for film, which is truly an art form. I can now with this co-exist in a whole new world of opportunities. So today, is year zero, the future is now," he said.
Too Old to Die Young features Miles Teller as a grieving police officer who, along with the man who shot his partner, finds himself in the underworld filled with working-class hit men, Yakuza soldiers, cartel assassins sent from Mexico, Russian mafia captains and gangs of teen killers.
Besides Teller, the 10-episode show also features John Hawkes, Jena Malone and Billy Baldwin.
Refn is a Cannes regular. His last three films — Drive, Only God Forgives and The Neon Demon — were screened at the festival.
The prestigious film gala will run till 25 May.
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