Alice Diop’s film “Saint-Omer” will represent France

This feature film won the Grand Jury Prize and the Best First Feature Award at the 2022 Venice Film Festival on September 10. It will be released in theaters on November 23 in France and will compete in the “international feature film” category.

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Thirteen days after being awarded at the Venice Film Festival, Alice Diop’s film, Saint Omer, was selected on Friday, September 23 to represent France at the next Oscar ceremony. Inspired by a true story of an infanticide trial, Saint Omer seek to explore “the great universal question” of our “relationship with motherhood”, stated the director during the Mostra.

His film tells the story of Laurence Coly, played by Guslagie Malanda, a Senegalese immigrant accused of killing her 15-month-old baby by abandoning her on a northern beach at high tide. The trial-centric film is directly inspired by a 2013 news story and the trial that followed.

This is the first feature film by the 43-year-old director, until then specialized in documentaries whose Us (2021), which took the viewer to meet a territory -the one crossed by the RER B- and its inhabitants.

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize and the First Film Prize in Venice, Saint Omer it is “a powerful film, emblematic of the renaissance of French cinema that we are proud to have supported in particular with the income advance”, welcomed the head of the CNC, Dominique Boutonnat, quoted in press release. It will be released in theaters on November 23.

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