Depp plays the French king in the opening film of an event which runs March 2-10 

Not surprisingly, given Paris’s hosting of the summer Olympics, there’s a strong sports strand in this year’s Cork French Film Festival.

Running from March 2-10 at the Arc Cinema in Cork city, the 35th edition of the annual festival includes films with stories based around swimming, tennis and horse-riding among its mix of classic and contemporary offerings.

Maïwenn and Johnny Depp in Jeanne du Barry at the Cork French Film Festival.

A number of the movies showing at the Arc also won Cesars at the recent awards ceremony for the French film industry.

The event is programmed by Cork festival stalwarts Úna Feely and Mick Hannigan, and is organised by the Alliance Française de Cork.

Organisers stated: “This year again, we are thrilled to direct the festival and be part of the programming team, with Úna Feely and Mick Hannigan, to present the best of French-language films, by French, Canadian, and Belgian-Congolese directors. You don’t need to speak French to enjoy our programme, as all our films are subtitled. There is something for every cinephile in our festival.” 

Five festival highlights 

Jeanne du Barry, Friday, March 1st: Director and actress Maïwenn will attend the Cork screening of her film, a period drama that also opened the Cannes Film Festival.

It tells of a woman born into poverty who climbs the social ladder and gets an audience with King Louis XV, played by Johnny Depp.

Johnny Depp in Jeanne du Barry at the Cork French Film Festival.

Orphée, Sunday 3rd: A restored version of Jean Cocteau’s classic 1950 take on the Orpheus myth.

The famous lyre-player from Greek mythology is recast as a left-bank poet in post-war Paris who becomes obsessed with a mysterious black-clad princess.

The Animal Kingdom (La Règne Animal), Weds 6th: This fantasy adventure was one of the big winners at the Césars, taking home six awards.

A mysterious malady is causing people to transform into hybrid creatures, developing wings, or being covered in scales.


La Règne Animal.

Tempête (Ride Above), Saturday 9th: This French-Canadian production gets a Saturday morning screening in Cork, Mallow and Midleton for post-primary school students.

It follows a young girl who is trying to overcome the effects of a terrible accident to fulfil her dream of becoming a jockey like her father.

The Three Musketeers, Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th: This latest adaptation of Alexandre Dumas’ classic novel has been split into two full length features, D’Artagnan and Milady, the latter of which is the festival’s closing-night film. Familiar faces in the cast include Vincent Cassel and Eva Green.

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