The entire film industry is soon to descend upon the Côte d’Azur this May as the Cannes Film Festival readies for its 77th edition. From May 14 through May 25, the iconic festival event of the year will host much-awaited new works for auteurs and rising directors alike, across sections like the Competition, Directors’ Fortnight, Un Certain Regard (with jury president Xavier Dolan), and Critics’ Week. Major prizes will come at the end of the festival, and will no doubt set the tone for the movie year ahead.

Such was the case last year when Justine Triet’s eventual Oscar winner “Anatomy of a Fall” took home the top award, the Palme d’Or, the fourth consecutive film distributed by Neon to do so. Jonathan Glazer’s 2023 Grand Prize winner “The Zone of Interest” also won two Academy Awards, while Competition entries “Perfect Days” and “May December” earned Oscar nominations, too. Other Cannes winners like “La Chimera” and “Fallen Leaves” also factored into the awards conversation last fall.

Culling inside knowledge, production timelines, and reasonable plausibility for certain upcoming films to make their premieres at Cannes, we at IndieWire have rounded up the 30 titles we hope make the cut at this year’s edition.

Samantha Bergeson, Christian Blauvelt, David Ehrlich, Kate Erbland, and Christian Zilko contributed to this story.

“The Balconettes” (dir. Noemie Merlant)

Since her Cannes debut in the beloved 2019 Céline Sciamma film “Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” multi-hyphenate Noemie Merlant has quickly become a festival regular. That includes not just her acting efforts, but her behind-the-camera work, as was the case with a 2021 special screening of her feature directorial debut, “Mi iubita, mon amour.” Merlant will likely be back on the Croisette with her next feature, “The Balconettes,” which she wrote alongside Sciamma. 

As with her last feature, Merlant also stars in the film and is joined by Souheila Yacoub and Annie Mercier, with the trio playing “three women in a Marseille apartment [who get] stuck in a heat wave. They find themselves trapped in a terrifying affair and longing for freedom.” The heat will do that to ya. —KE 

“The Bitter Tears of Zahra Zand” (dir. Vahid Hakimzadeh)

Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s lesbian folie à trois “The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant” remains fertile ground for filmmakers to remake and reimagine. Take 2022’s “Peter von Kant” from François Ozon, a gay male take on the 1972 film that also doubled as a slice-of-biopic about director Fassbinder himself.

Now here’s a film we’ve expected to drop at Cannes in years past: British-Iranian filmmaker Vahid Hakimzadeh puts his own spin on the German director’s masterpiece with “The Bitter Tears of Zahra Zand,” a Farsi-language retelling set around a high society fashion designer who has fled Iran for London on the brink of the 1979 Islamic revolution. While her country falls apart, she descends into mind games and manipulation over the elderly housekeeper (Pari Armian) who raised her — and the new muse who disrupts her world (Melina Farahani). Hakimzadeh co-wrote the film with Boshra Dastournezhad, who also stars as the title character, Zahra Zand. Director Hakimzadeh’s last feature was “Greater Things,” which played festivals worldwide. A source close to the film tells us that Cannes has seen the film, which is also in contention for another festival. —RL

HOLLYWOOD, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 09: Franz Rogowski attends the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences' 14th Annual Governors Awards at The Ray Dolby Ballroom on January 09, 2024 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
Franz Rogowski, who stars in Andrea Arnold’s ‘Bird’ (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)Getty Images

“Bird” (dir. Andrea Arnold)

Any Andrea Arnold film is cause for celebrating ‘round these parts, a sentiment that — based on her frequent appearances in Cannes, plus no less than three Jury Prizes for her efforts — we share with the festival’s selection committee.  

For her first narrative feature since “American Honey” (her documentary “Cow” played at the festival in 2021), Arnold is keeping details close to the vest, though star Franz Rogowski praised her approach in a recent chat with IndieWire. “With Andrea Arnold, this [past] summer, the atmosphere was quite different from what I’ve experienced so far,” Rogowski said. “She would wait for the right moment to come, like a hunter, for hours and hours to wait for a bunch of kids to calm down until they could walk across a meadow and own the meadow and be in their own territory instead of being forced to pretend to do something naturally. And that’s her message.” 

We do know Rogowski will be joined by Oscar nominee Barry Keoghan, plus Joanne Matthews, James Nelson-Joyce, and Nykiya Adams. Variety reports “it was shot in the U.K. around the Kent area last summer and, like much of Arnold’s work, examines life on the fringes of society.” —KE 

“C’est Pas Moi” (dir. Leos Carax)

From the sewer-dwelling leprechauns and talking limos of “Holy Motors” to the puppet baby of “Annette,” Leos Carax has created some of the most unforgettable film imagery of the 21st century. His latest project, “C’est Pas Moi,” sees him dig into his own legacy and interact with some of his most beloved movie characters in what has been described as a cinematic self-portrait. Like any Carax project, it’s probably a film that’s impossible to grasp until we’ve seen it. But any new work from the eccentric auteur is a major event in arthouse circles — and given that his last two features received Cannes premieres, a Croisette bow for “C’est Pas Moi” seems likely. The 40-minute project could fill a similar programming slot as the Pedro Almodóvar short “Strange Way of Life,” which opened the 2023 festival. —CZ

“Chocobar” (dir. Lucrecia Martel)

Leave it to Argentine filmmaker Lucrecia Martel to make a provocative cinematic stance. She was, after all, head of the Venice jury that gave “Joker” the Golden Lion in 2019. She’s appeared at Cannes before, with “The Holy Girl” and “The Headless Woman” both competing for the Palme d’Or, and she’s primed for a Croisette appearance for her hybrid project “Chocobar.”

Long in the works, “Chocobar” is her first full-length nonfiction film, and it unpacks the murder of indigenous activist Javier Chocobar. Here, Martel threads together 500 years of colonial history to widen the scope on oppression in Latin American society. Chocobar was a member of the Chuschagasta indigenous community who was killed in 2009 over a land rights dispute. A trial wasn’t held until 2018, after which the convicted parties were freed due to court hold-ups on the ruling. Martel positions how Argentina’s colonial framework led to the events, incorporating historical archives dating back to the 16th century. —RL

“The Disappearance” (dir. Kirill Serebrennikov)

Kirill Serebrennikov has had one of the most fascinating career trajectories of any Russian director in recent memory, going from being an artist who found success under the patronage of a close Putin advisor in the early 2000s to being a dissident artist: Openly gay, the Bolshoi Theatre initially canceled his ballet “Nureyev” in 2017 for alleged “gay propaganda,” and he faced criminal charges — and a three-year probation in Russia that prevented him from leaving the country — many thought were trumped up due to the way he’s spoken out for gay rights and liberal causes.

Opposing the invasion of Ukraine, Serebrennikov was the only Russian director whose work appeared at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival, with the film “Tchaikovsky’s Wife.” Now he’s taken on material with a startling charge, the story of Josef Mengele’s years on the run in Paraguay and Brazil following World War II, where he was notoriously a doctor at Auschwitz who murdered and performed gruesome experiments on prisoners. “A Hidden Life” star August Diehl will perform the role in this adaptation of Olivier Guez’s French-language novel “The Disappearance of Josef Mengele.” This is disturbing material and requires the most delicate touch, especially since the film will apparently be told from Mengele’s perspective. If anyone can do it, it’s Serebrennikov. —CB 

VENICE, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 08: Michel Franco and Jessica Chastain attend a red carpet for the movie "Memory" at the 80th Venice International Film Festival on September 08, 2023 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Kristy Sparow/FilmMagic)
Michel Franco and Jessica Chastain at the 2023 Venice Film Festival (Photo by Kristy Sparow/FilmMagic)FilmMagic

“Dreams” (dir. Michel Franco)

Mexican provocateur Michel Franco hasn’t brought a film to Cannes since 2017’s Un Certain Regard entry “April’s Daughter.” His only bow in the main competition was in 2015 for “Chronic,” starring Tim Roth as an end-of-life caregiver. With his 2023 Venice premiere “Memory” generating enormous praise from critics, and a Volpi Cup Best Actor prize for Peter Sarsgaard, it’s not unreasonable to expect his made-in-secret follow-up “Dreams” could pop on the Croisette this year.

Franco shot “Dreams” in San Francisco with his “Memory” star Jessica Chastain, only revealing that production had wrapped on the $3 million movie (made with a non-WGA script during the strikes) while doing festival press for “Memory.” Rupert Friend also stars in the romantic drama set around the ballet and dance worlds of the Bay Area. Cannes loves a red carpet with Jessica Chastain, so don’t rule out “Dreams” showing up this year. It’s ready. —RL

“Emmanuelle” (dir. Audrey Diwan)

French filmmaker Audrey Diwan won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 2021 for her poignant abortion drama “Happening,” setting her on the course for continued international acclaim. Does that include a stop on the Croisette? It should, especially considering the content of her newest effort, backed by Neon: her own take on the iconic (and erotic!) 1967 French novel “Emmanuelle,” written by Emmanuelle Arsan. 

This time around, the much-adapted story of a woman on a sensual journey through Paris will star  Noémie Merlant, alongside Naomi Watts and “White Lotus” favorite Will Sharpe. Neon has U.S. distribution rights to “Emmanuelle,” which shot on location in France and just wrapped this fall. Diwan co-wrote the film, whose sexually adventurous heroine was last brought to the screen in the little-seen 1974 French drama, with “Other People’s Children” director Rebecca Zlotowski. —KE 

‘Emmanuelle’ (courtesy Goodfellas)

“The End” (dir. Joshua Oppenheimer)

An apocalyptic musical from the director of “The Act of Killing” and “The Look of Silence”? We’re in! Joshua Oppenheimer directs his first narrative feature, and one widely tipped for a Cannes premiere, starring Tilda Swinton, George MacKay, Moses Ingram, and Michael Shannon. Shannon and MacKay have both confirmed they sing and dance in the film about a family living in an underground bunker decades after a world-ending event they helped inspire.

“I’m the mother in basically the richest family on the planet. The father has been at the forefront of engineering the destruction of the biosphere, and they’ve lived for the last 20-something years in a bunker underneath Middle America, which is like Versailles,” said in a W Magazine interview way back in 2022. “The End” shot in Ireland, Italy, and Germany in spring 2023. “Leviathan” cinematographer Mikhail Krichman is on board, along with “Melancholia” production designer Jette Lehman, Rasmus Heisterberg writing with Oppenheimer, and Joshua Schmidt penning the music. —RL

“Grand Tour” (dir. Miguel Gomes)

Portuguese filmmaker Miguel Gomes hasn’t been to Cannes since he brought all three parts of “Arabian Nights” to the Directors’ Fortnight sidebar in 2015. “Grand Tour” — which sounds like a sibling to his breakthrough “Tabu” in tone, scale, and color scheme — could finally see him ascend the Palais steps and compete for a Palme d’Or. Set in Burma circa 1917, Gomes’ latest epic is a wry and lovelorn story about a civil servant for the British Empire who runs away from his fiancée the day they’re due to be married… only to second-guess his decision at some point during his escape.

Lucky for him, his bride-to-be is hot on his trail, but there’s no telling if these two wandering souls will ever bump into each other again amid the vastness of the Asian continent. It was only a matter of time before Gomes’ scathing political humor and unsentimental romanticism drew him back to a colonial love story (of sorts), and we have reason to hope the wait to see what he’s done with it will be over very soon. —DE

‘Grand Tour’ (courtesy Rui Pocas)

“Hope” (Dir. Na Hong-jin)

Korean filmmaker Na Hong-jin has kept a low profile since his 2016 hit “The Wailing,” which previously played out of competition at Cannes. It sure sounds like he’s been busy, however, preparing his next film, which stars husband and wife duo Michael Fassbender and Alicia Vikander, alongside Taylor Russell, Cameron Britton, “Squid Game” breakout Hoyeon, Hwang Jung-min, and Zo In-sung.  

The film, billed as a thriller, is shrouded in a bit of mystery, though each bit we do know about it is intriguing. Per Deadline, “The largely Korean-language film will follow the residents of Hopo Port, where a mysterious discovery is made on the outskirts of the remote harbor town. Before long, the residents find themselves in a desperate fight for survival against something they have never encountered before.” —KE 

“Inside Out 2” (dir. Kelsey Mann)

Pixar’s follow-up to its Oscar-winning 2015 film boasts a who’s who of Gen Z talent. “Inside Out 2” follows a now-teenaged Riley (Kensington Tallman) who has to cope with new emotions ranging from anxiety (Maya Hawke) to Envy (Ayo Edebiri). “Passages” and “Blue Is the Warmest Color” star Adéle Exarchopolous makes her voice acting debut as Ennui, while Paul Walter Hauser continues his animated film streak after Charlie Kaufman’s “Orion and the Dark” to play Embarrassment in “Inside Out 2.” Amy Poehler, Tony Hale, Diane Lane, and Kyle MacLachlan return in their respective roles for the sequel.

As Academy Award-winning director Pete Docter is not back helming the feature, Kelsey Mann takes over the directing duties. “Inside Out 2” will be the first Pixar film to open in theaters after “Soul,” “Luca,” and “Turning Red” received solely Disney+ releases before being re-released theatrically after the fact. “Inside Out 2” premieres in U.S. theaters June 14. —SB

“Juror #2” (Dir. Clint Eastwood)

For his 40th (!!) film, Clint Eastwood just might be returning to the festival that’s played home to premieres of his “The Changeling,” “Mystic River,” “Bird,” “Absolute Power,” “Pale Rider,” and more (and hosted him as jury president back in 1994. The filmmaker and actor recently wrapped courtroom drama “Juror #2” in Savannah, Georiga, which stars Nicholas Hoult as the titular jury member “as he realizes during the case that he killed the victim in a driving accident, and desperately attempts to get the defendant off without going to jail himself.” The film packs an absolutely powerful (sorry) supporting cast, including Toni Collette, Chris Messina, J.K. Simmons, Zoey Deutch, Kiefer Sutherland, Gabriel Basso, Leslie Bibb, Amy Aquino, and more. 

Any concerns about Eastwood slowing down? Forget them, as co-star Messina recently told IndieWire, “He’s 93, and he’s so present and focused and kind and gentle. You think you’re going to get Dirty Harry or whatever, and you get a playful, loving man. Like Ben, [Affleck] I really think that actor-directors, they’re just awesome to be around because they know the actor’s life. They know what the anxiety, they know how to relax you. They know that if they cast it well, they can stay out of the way, and they don’t clip your wings, they let you fly. Clint was very similar to Ben in that way. Crew members that had been with him for 22 years. Not a lot of takes, one or two takes. You can ask for more, but he’s very, very at ease and he keeps you that way.” —KE 

Yorgos Lanthimos and Emma Stone at the 96th Annual Oscars held at at the Ovation Hollywood on March 10, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Variety via Getty Images)
Yorgos Lanthimos and Emma Stone at the 96th annual OscarsVariety via Getty Images

“Kinds of Kindness” (dir. Yorgos Lanthimos)

Searchlight Pictures didn’t have to set a prime early summer release date for Yorgos Lanthimos’ much-hyped follow-up to his smash hit “Poor Things” (to wit: June 21) to make savvy cinephiles start beating on a Cannes debut for his next Emma Stone-starrer, but it sure helps clarify things. The film would mark the Greek auteur’s return to the Croisette following his 2017 offering “The Killing of a Sacred Deer,” and would surely prove to be one heck of a hot ticket. The feature has been billed as an anthology film with three separate storylines that collide, though plot details remain scarce so far.  

The cast reunites Lanthimos with his “The Favourite” and “Poor Things” star Stone — and in a contemporary setting this time — plus “Poor Things” stars Willem Dafoe and Margaret Qualley. Joining the Lanthimos troupe are Jesse Plemons, Hunter Schafer, Joe Alwyn, Hong Chau, and Mamoudou Athie. Little else is known about the picture, but anyone who knows — and loves — a Lanthimos film will likely be there with bells on. —KE 

“Marcel and Mister Pagnol” (dir. Sylvain Chomet)

Sylvain Chomet — the animator behind “The Triplets of Belleville” and “The Illusionist” — has been rather quiet since the non-event of live-action debut “Atilla Marcel” in 2013, but his long-awaited return to the format that made him famous promises to make all sorts of noise when it finally premieres, be that at Cannes or somewhere else in the coming months. Mistakenly billed as “the first animated cinematic biopic” (Hayao Miyazaki’s “The Wind Rises” would like a word), “Marcel and Mister Pagnol” promises a vast and playful look at one of the underappreciated iconoclasts of 20th-century French cinema, as Chomet literalizes Pagnol’s inner child into a character of its own and casts it as a spirit guide to lead this story from 1920 to 1950; from Pagnol’s days in Paris as an English teacher to the pre-war success of “Fanny” and “Marius” and then on through the tumult that followed. 

Acquired by Sony Pictures Classics in 2022, and poised to be as loving a tribute to Pagnol as “The Illusionist” was to Jacques Tati, Chomet’s film has been rumored for a Cannes debut in 2025 (timed to Pagnol’s 130th birthday), but this is a wish list more than a predictions piece, and unverified rumblings that the film might be ready ahead of schedule have us hoping that we might get a chance to see it sooner than we thought. —DE

“Marcello Mio” (dir. Christophe Honoré)

Chiara Mastroianni will take on the ghost of her father, the late, great Marcello Mastroianni, in Christophe Honoré’s “Marcello Mio,” playing a version of herself opposite her own mother, Catherine Deneuve. And numerous other actors who’ve graced European screens will be playing versions of themselves as well — Fabrice Luchini, Benjamin Biolay, Nicole Garcia, and Melvil Poupaud among them.

The movie will be about living in the shadow of legacy and how one can create an identity for themselves amid what the public thinks their identity is or should be. It’s prime material for Honoré to take on, especially since he’s worked with Mastroianni six times before. MK2 is handling sales on the movie, which started filming late last year, seemingly positioning it for a prime Cannes spot. And the last time Mastroianni and Honoré worked together, for 2019’s “On a Magical Night,” she won Best Performance in Un Certain Regard. Look out, Croisette! —CB 

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 19: Nathalie Emmanuel and Adam Driver are seen on the set of Francis Ford Coppola's 'Megalopolis' on January 19, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by MEGA / GC Images)
Nathalie Emmanuel and Adam Driver are seen on the set of Francis Ford Coppola’s ‘Megalopolis’ on January 19, 2023 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by MEGA / GC Images)GC Images

“Megalopolis” (dir. Francis Ford Coppola)

Adam Driver has teased (and defended) Francis Ford Coppola’s self-funded epic “Megalopolis” long enough. The feature has been rife with rumors of on-set disputes as below-the-line members parted ways with the project in late 2022, and it seems no one quite knows what to expect from Coppola’s self-funded $120 million film. The ensemble cast includes Driver, Forest Whitaker, Aubrey Plaza, Shia LaBeouf, Dustin Hoffman, and Jason Schwartzman, and has been described as a love story set against a sci-fi background of a futuristic New York City during a quest to build a utopian society. Coppola hinted that the film would get an “early” 2024 release, and with Cannes being the first high-profile awards circuit festival of the season, it seems that “Megalopolis” is too big not to debut there. As of press time, “Megalopolis” is beginning to screen for Coppola’s inner circle. —SB

“Mickey 17” (dir. Bong Joon Ho)

Yes, we know what you’re thinking — an unlikely entry given all the release date changes around “Mickey 17,” but let us dream, won’t you?

It’s tough to imagine another 2024 (maybe?) title more anticipated by the Cannes faithful (and, let’s be honest, scads of IndieWire readers) than Bong Joon Ho’s next film, his first since winning Best Picture with his wildly popular “Parasite.” This one stars Robert Pattinson, Naomi Ackie, Steven Yeun, Toni Collette, and Mark Ruffalo, and Bong directed, wrote, and produced the film and adapted it from a novel by Edward Ashton. 

In it, Pattinson stars as Mickey, who is an Expendable: a disposable employee on a human expedition sent to colonize the ice world Niflheim. Whenever a mission is too dangerous — even suicidal — the crew turns to Mickey. After one iteration dies, a new body is regenerated with most of his memories intact. 

The film is also Bong’s first with Warner Bros., with the studio initially setting a March release date for the film before pulling it from the schedule earlier this year, which yes, doesn’t sound encouraging. Nor does Warner Bros.’ new release date of January 31, 2025 as the film continues to test screen. But this is a wish list after all, and one can dream. —KE 

‘Mickey 17’ (screenshot courtesy Warner Bros.)

“Miséricorde” (dir. Alain Guiraudie)

Alain Guiraudie is among France’s most essential and provocative voices in LGBTQ cinema, with his lakeside cruising thriller “Stranger by the Lake” (which employed various unsimulated sex scenes) now rightly registered as among the best gay films of the century. Guiraudie hasn’t made quite a splash since the 2013 film — 2016’s “Staying Vertical” competed for the Palme d’Or, while his 2022 “Nobody’s Fool” opted for Berlin — but any return from the filmmaker is a cause célèbre for arthouse faithfuls.

Translated as “Mercy,” “Miséricorde” follows a noir-like path around Jérémie, a 30-year-old man attending his friend’s funeral in his native Saint-Martial. Rumors and suspicion abound around Jérémie after he commits an unspeakable act, putting him at the center of a police investigation. Here, Guiraudie reunited with “Stranger by the Lake” cinematographer Claire Mathon, the DP behind “Atlantics,” “Portrait of a Lady on Fire,” and “Petite Maman.” —RL

“Motel Destino” (dir. Karim Aïnouz)

Brazilian filmmaker Karim Aïnouz is expected to return to Cannes with “Motel Destino,” an erotically charged tapestry of youth. Aïnouz won the Un Certain Regard prize in 2019 for “Invisible Life,” which represented Brazil in the 2020 Best International Feature Oscar race. The acclaimed Amazon Studios release set around two sisters struggling against oppression in 1950s Rio de Janeiro did not receive the Academy Award nomination, but was widely praised by critics that year.

Aïnouz was bumped up to the competition last year with “Firebrand,” a middlingly received period drama starring Alicia Vikander as Henry VIII’s (Jude Law) sixth and final wife. But “Motel Destino,” repped by Match Factory, looks to return Aïnouz to personal storytelling, as he shot the film with cinematographer Hélène Louvart in Ceará, his home state in Brazil, with many untapped local talents. “‘Motel Destino’ is, above all, a love story,” the filmmaker said in a press statement. “The love between a peripheral young man who lives against a system that wants him dead and a woman who resists the attacks of patriarchy against her own life.” —RL

“À Notre Beau Métier” (dir. Quentin Dupieux)

French filmmaker Quentin Dupieux has almost never steered us wrong with his droll satires like psychokinetic horror movie “Rubber,” about a murderous anthropomorphic tire, awards season satire “Reality,” or insectoid comedy “Mandibles.” Last year, he parodied superhero IP with the bizarre, spandex-clad comedy “Smoking Causes Coughing,” co-starring Adèle Exarchopoulos.

Exarchopoulos’ “Blue Is the Warmest Color” co-star Léa Seydoux, along with Louis Garrel and Manuel Guillot, joins Dupieux for his latest outré affair, “À Notre Beau Métier.” The absurdist comedy follows a troupe of actors caught up in a terrible production, and where each actor has a dual role (including Vincent Lindon!). Dupieux’s films have shown up at Cannes, though they have yet to play in competition. —RL

Jacob Elordi at the GQ Men of the Year Party 2023 at Bar Marmont on November 16, 2023 in Los Angeles, California (Photo by Gilbert Flores/Variety via Getty Images)
Jacob Elordi, who stars in ‘Oh Canada’ (Photo by Gilbert Flores/Variety via Getty Images)Variety via Getty Images

“Oh Canada” (dir. Paul Schrader) 

Paul Schrader’s apparent determination to die shooting a movie has prompted him to declare several of his recent films as cinematic swan songs, only for his plans to be thwarted by his continued longevity. His latest directorial outing, “Oh Canada,” was announced in a similar fashion — even if Schrader has already announced plans to make another “post-death” movie — and promises to see Schrader merge his signature fascination with male alienation with his more recent musings on mortality.

The adaptation of Russell Banks’ novel “Foregone” reunites Schrader with his “American Gigolo” star Richard Gere, who plays famed documentary filmmaker Leonard Fife, an American leftist who fled to Canada as a young man (Jacob Elordi) to avoid the Vietnam War draft. As Fife battles cancer during his twilight years, he agrees to a series of interviews with a former student (Michael Imperioli) intent on revealing his long-guarded secrets and demystifying his mythologized life. Schrader’s last three films all premiered at the Venice Film Festival, but a Cannes premiere for “Oh Canada” would delight many cinephiles on the Croisette. —CZ

“The Order” (dir. Justin Kurzel)

While rumors suggest Australian director Justin Kurzel’s heist-y crime thriller “The Order” won’t be ready until the fall, don’t count Kurzel out of the Cannes mix. His 2021 true crime drama “Nitram” won Caleb Landry Jones the Best Actor prize that year, with the film also competing for the Palme d’Or. “The Order,” meanwhile, could bring a murderer’s row of stars to the Cannes red carpet. Starring Jude Law, Nicholas Hoult, Tye Sheridan, Odessa Young, and Jurnee Smollett, the film written by Oscar nominee Zach Baylin (“King Richard”) centers on an Idaho FBI agent (Law) on the chase of a string of recent bank robberies and armored car operations. But he learns that behind the crimes may be a radical group with a charismatic leader, played by Nicholas Hoult.

Hoult plays neo-Nazi Robert Jay Matthews in this true story about the white supremacist paramilitary group The Order, who died in a shootout involving dozens of FBI agents in Washington in 1984. Kurzel is well-versed in the true crime genre vernacular, breaking out with 2011’s unforgettably bleak “The Snowtown Murders,” and previously directing a nearly naked Hoult in 2019’s “True History of the Kelly Gang.” —RL

“Queer” (dir. Luca Guadagnino)

Luca Guadagnino joints typically bow elsewhere in the festival ecosystem — think “Challengers” originally for Venice before the strikes totaled that premiere, “Suspiria” also in Venice, and “Call Me by Your Name” at Sundance despite the Italian-set romance having distinctly Venice vibes. The Italian filmmaker, though, did wrap his William S. Burroughs adaptation “Queer” last June 2023, so presumably the film starring Daniel Craig will be ready for a Cannes premiere. That said, Guadagnino has already announced two more films in the last week (a gay romance with Josh O’Connor and a Julia Roberts movie at Amazon/MGM) and has “Challengers” promo duties this month before that opens stateside April 19, so the Oscar-nominated workhorse is already a busy boy.

With a screenplay by Celine Song’s husband Justin Kuritzkes, “Queer” centers on Craig as a criminal fleeing New Orleans to Mexico City in the 1940s, where he becomes entangled with a discharged Naval officer who’s also a drug addict (Drew Starkey). That character is based on Adelbert Lewis Marker, whom Burroughs befriended in Mexico City, serving as the autobiographical basis for the 1985 novel. Jason Schwartzman and Lesley Manville also star in the film. —RL

“Rumours” (dir. Guy Maddin)

Guy Maddin has never really seemed to be on Cannes’ wavelength (and vice-versa), but the film world’s most famous Winnepegger — best known for dreamy, low-budget, silent cinema-inspired fantasias like “The Saddest Music in the World” and “Brand Upon the Brain!” — has also never made a comedy starring Cate Blanchett, Alicia Vikander, and Charles Dance before. That means it might be time to rewrite history in the event that Maddin and his co-directors Evan and Galen Johnson can finish their latest comedy in time.

The premise for “Rumours” sounds more like a Ruben Östlund film than you might expect from the director of “The Forbidden Room,” but let’s not hold that against it: Blanchett, Dance, and the rest of Maddin’s cast play world leaders who convene at the G7 meeting, only to get hopelessly lost in the woods as they try to compose a joint — and presumably feckless — statement of some kind. Hilarity ensues. Star power alone may not be enough to earn “Rumours” a Competition berth, but any kind of Cannes premiere would shine a terrific spotlight on one of the movies’ true originals. —DE

“Serpent’s Path” (dir. Kiyoshi Kurosawa)

Japanese filmmaker Kiyoshi Kurosawa has been a regular guest at Cannes with the likes of post-Y2K horror cult classic “Pulse,” Un Certain Regard winners “Séance” and “Tokyo Sonata,” and 2017’s “Before We Vanish.” Last year, the genre auteur perhaps best known for his “Seven”-inspired serial killer fever dream “Cure” (which recently played New York’s Film Forum in 35mm) began remaking one of his own movies, 1998’s “Serpent’s Path,” but this time in French. The film follows a mysterious woman who teams up with a man whose daughter was recently murdered. Their path of vengeance leads them into a web of kidnapping and torture as they get to the bottom of what happened.

This version will star Ko Shibasaki (“Battle Royale”) and Damien Bonnard (recently “Asteroid City”) in the leading roles, with Japanese studio Kadokawa (“Your Name,” “Belle”) backing the movie. A summer 2024 release is eyed for Japan, meaning a Cannes bow makes perfect sense. —RL

PARIS, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 26: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY - For Non-Editorial use please seek approval from Fashion House) David Cronenberg attends the Saint Laurent Womenswear Spring/Summer 2024 show as part of Paris Fashion Week  on September 26, 2023 in Paris, France. (Photo by Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
David Cronenberg (Photo by Stephane Cardinale – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)Corbis via Getty Images

“The Shrouds” (dir. David Cronenberg)

David Cronenberg’s series concept turned feature film “The Shrouds” will hopefully debut at Cannes. Originally envisioned as a limited series for Netflix before the streamer pulled the plug, The Film follows a grieving widower (Vincent Cassel) who invents a tool for people to communicate with their deceased loved ones inside a burial shroud. And because it’s a Cronenberg film, that tool is used as people watch bodies decompose in real time.

Diane Kruger, Guy Pearce, and Sandrine Holt co-star. Cronenberg’s “Crimes of the Future” actress Léa Seydoux was originally attached to the project before Kruger replaced her (Seydoux told IndieWire why here). The film is expected to have a semi-autobiographical quality to its storyline rooted in grief, as Cronenberg’s wife and filmmaking collaborator, editor Carolyn Cronenberg, died in 2017. —SB

“Those Who Find Me” (dir. Dea Kulumbegashvili)

A hit on the festival circuit in 2020 (to the extent there was a festival circuit in 2020), Dea Kulumbegashvili’s aptly named “Beginning” remains one of the boldest and most self-possessed debuts in recent memory. Now, the Georgian filmmaker is imminently set to return with her follow-up feature “Those Who Find Me,” about a rural OBGYN willing to run afoul of local law when it’s in the best interests of her patients — at least until a rigorous internal review turns her life upside down and forces her to re-evaluate her medical practice. 

Billed as a “searing portrait of a woman of great courage and conviction” and also “a timeless and universal ode to womanhood,” “Those Who Find Me” sounds like a natural second act for Kulumbegashvili, whose previous film resisted any kind of prescriptive psychology as it gracefully explored the space between motherhood and martyrdom. “Beginning” was due to premiere at Cannes before COVID interfered, and so we’re hopeful that “Those Who Find Me” will make up for that by giving Kulumbegashvili the red carpet treatment she deserves. —DE

Untitled Paolo Sorrentino/Gary Oldman Movie (dir. Paolo Sorrentino)

Following his triumphant 2021 coming-of-age film “The Hand of God,” Paolo Sorrentino once again returns to his native Naples, Italy for his currently untitled 10th film. The mysterious black-and-white project follows a woman named Parthenope as she lives her life in Naples from the 1950s to the present. Any new work from Sorrentino is destined to become a must-see event on the festival circuit, but the presence of Gary Oldman in an unspecified role adds additional intrigue to the project. Given Sorrentino’s status as the current patron saint of Italian arthouse cinema, it’s always possible that he opts to wait a few months for a Venice premiere for his love letter to Naples. But given his long history of competing at Cannes, a Croisette premiere cannot be ruled out. —CZ

“We Shall Be All” (dir. Jia Zhangke)

On that imaginary list of the handful of auteurs vying for the title of “greatest working filmmaker on the planet,” the 53-year-old Jia occupies a prominent place indeed. Since his 1997 feature debut “Xiao Wu,” also known as “Pickpocket,” the mainland Chinese director has perfected a style that combines rigorous, Antonioni-like portraits of lonely souls in a rapidly modernizing China (he’s simply one of the great chroniclers of the sea changes of the 21st century full stop) with extraordinary entertainment value: Think of those long, unbroken shots of Wang Hongwei performing pop songs in “Platform,” the theme-park stage shows in “The World,” and the sheer Tarantinian storytelling brio of “A Touch of Sin.”

For his first narrative feature in six years, since 2018’s “Ash Is Purist White,” his camera once again finds his go-to star since “Platform,” Zhao Tao, his wife in real life, for “We Shall Be All.” Zhao plays a woman over the entirety of this century to date, who’s spent most of her time avoiding the “real world” and retreating into her love of the Belle Epoque. For those, like this writer, who particularly enjoyed Jia’s underrated “Mountains May Depart,” this sounds like another example of his unique ability to mine deep emotion from the kind of decades-spanning story many other filmmakers would find daunting. And like that film, it’s being sold by France’s MK2, making it a natural fit for Cannes. —CB 

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