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Assayas

Olivier Assayas: “I have practically nothing positive to say about Hollywood except that this industry’s prosperity and new modalities do not delight me, they frighten or even repulse me, because what they have recently produced is diametrically opposed to what I loved or admired about the American cinema that, throughout film history, provided this art with several of its greatest masters. We are witnessing the triumph of series, the distribution of films through digital platforms and the confiscation of screens in the service of franchises, whose hegemony now seems absolute. Why finance a film that is not meant to provoke a sequel, a spin-off, or another film “in the universe of” and whose unsure relationship with the public is unpredictable? For a long time now, in Hollywood, the territory of film has been shrinking. To the benefit of an independent cinema forced to make do with ridiculous budgets – and thus limited in its practicing of the contemporary syntax of cinema, which is reserved for major productions. And Netflix, and Disney Plus, and Apple, etc.: hasn’t cinema taken refuge there? Haven’t Alfonso Cuarón, Martin Scorsese, the Safdie brothers, and Noah Baumbach found political asylum there? I have even been there myself, since my film Wasp Network is distributed by Netflix in most places, except where it had been bought in advance — first of all in France, where it was an honest public success on the big screen. No other distributor offered the producers of the film a viable alternative.”

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