Annette Insdorf, director of undergraduate film studies, is making her annual trip to Cannes, France, for the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. Insdorf will host television coverage of the festival -- presenting opening night on the Independent Film Channel (IFC) on May 15 and co-hosting closing night on May 26 on both BRAVO and IFC.
Since the mid-1990s, Insdorf has co-hosted the closing night festivities with film critic Roger Ebert. After a brief-on-air introduction, the pair comments on the best films, events and parties, and attempts to predict who the jury's winners will be. Insdorf also translates the entire ceremony from French to English.
Insdorf says, she is looking forward to the premieres of Roman Polanski's 'The Pianist,' about a Jewish pianist in the Warsaw Ghetto during World War II, and 'Laurel Canyon,' the second feature film by Columbia MFA alumna Lisa Cholodenko, whose film 'High Art' was a success in Cannes in 1998.
She also plans to see Michael Moore's new documentary "Bowling for Columbine," and Alexander Payne's "About Schmidt," starring Jack Nicholson and Hope Davis.
In addition to her role with the Cannes Film Festival, Insdorf was recently interviewed for the June 2 edition of the new French television program "Double Je," hosted by Bernard Pivot.
"Bernard Pivot is to France what Charlie Rose is to New York -- a gifted interviewer whose programs are top-rated," says Insdorf. "After the success of his 'Apostrophes' and 'Bouillon de Culture,' he has created 'Double Je,' a French-language arts magazine composed of interviews with artists, writers, critics, scholars, etc. of many nationalities."
In the interview Insdorf reflects on her personal trajectory, from Paris to Columbia University, as well as on French culture and the courses she teaches. Insdorf and Pivot also discuss Francois Truffaut, the French director, screenwriter and critic whose ideas formed the basis for auteur criticism, the concept wherein a film reflects the imagination of one man. Truffaut is the subject of Insdorf's first book, "Francois Truffaut," and someone Pivot knew and admired.
Insdorf and Pivot also discuss her most recent book on Polish filmmaker Krzyzstof Kieslowski, who is best known for "The Double Life of Veronique" and his trilogy "Blue, White, Red."
Insdorf's book, "Double Lives, Second Chances: The Cinema of Krzyzstof Kieslowski," just came out in France. The paperback version comes out this month in the United States from Talk Miramax/Hyperion. Insdorf has added a new chapter in the paperback version about Kieslowski's influence on recent films.
"In the new chapter I bring in such films as 'Run, Lola, Run' (whose director, Tom Tykwer, just directed 'Heaven,' from a script by Kieslowski)," says Insdorf. "Indeed, I discuss 'Heaven' -- which will be released in the fall by Miramax -- in depth."
The original hardcover was published in October 1999.