Cinemania Film Festival
shines for its 25th edition

51 feature films selected from the best in French-language cinema, all with English subtitles

Cinemania Film Festival is very pleased to present 51 feature films, including numerous North American, Canadian and Quebec premieres, selected from the best in French-language cinema, all with English subtitles.

Thus, 17 countries will be represented during the various sessions that make up the entire rich program. 23 guests, directors, actors and producers will come to meet the festival-goers of this 25th edition, which will be held from November 7 to 17, 2019.

In addition to the Imperial Cinema, the emblematic building that remains the Festival’s headquarters, Cinemania will also be located in the following venues: Théâtre Outremont, Cinéma du Parc, Cinéma du Musée, Cinémathèque québécoise, Hôtel Sofitel and Phi.

Opening, closing and pre-opening evening

It is the much-awaited Portrait of the Young Girl on Fire (Portrait de la jeune fille en feu), by Céline Sciamma, which will open the Festival’s new edition on Thursday, November 7 at the Imperial Cinema. Winner of the Screenplay Award at the Cannes Film Festival in 2019, the film stars Adèle Haenel and Noémie Merlant in a romantic encounter between a painter, Marianne (Noémie Merlant) and her model, Héloïse (Adèle Haenelel), whose wedding portrait she’s painting. The two women rapidly develop a close bond that evolves into a deeper relationship.

The feature film Spread your Wings (Donne-moi des ailes), starring Jean-Paul Rouve (Le sens de la fête) and Mélanie Doutey (Le Grand Bain), will close this 25th edition on November 17 at the Imperial Cinema in the presence of its director, filmmaker, writer and adventurer from the far north Nicolas Vanier. The film is inspired by the true story of Christian Moullec, also co-writer, who crossed Europe in ULM with wild geese. Donne-moi des ailes places environmental urgency at the heart of its purpose to depict a touching father-son relationship.

In addition, this year the festival is once again organizing an exceptional pre-opening session at the Théâtre Outremont on Tuesday, November 5, with the presentation of Sophie Deraspe‘s Antigone in the presence of its director and actress, Nahéma Ricci, who is competing for the Oscar for Best International Film. The film won the Best Canadian Film Award at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

Celebrity guests of the 25th edition

This year, Cinemania will offer festival-goers many special screenings in the presence of guests, including:
Almamy Kanouté, Steve Tientcheu and Alexis Manenti will accompany Les misérables, France’s contender movie at the Oscars. Alexis Manenti also plays in L’Enkas;
Zabou Breitman will present The Swallows of Kabul (Les hirondelles de Kaboul), an animated film that attracted attention in Cannes;
Djanis Bouzyani will accompany Tu mérites un amour, the first film by actress Hafsia Herzi;
• Director Antonin Baudry will accompany the film Le chant du loup;
Dominique Besnehard and Éric Caravaca for Les éblouis;
• Director Mounia Meddour will be present for her first film Papicha, Algeria’s representative at the Oscars;
• Franco-Montreal actor Laurent Lucas will present the judicial drama Une intime conviction;
Serge Toubiana, president of UniFrance, will accompany Alain Cavalier‘s film Être vivant et le savoir, which tells the story of the illness of his partner, novelist and scriptwriter Emmanuèle Bernheim.
Niels Schneider and Guillaume de Fontenay will be present for Sympathy for the Devil (Sympathie pour le diable) The actor will also be featured in three other films: Justine Triet‘s Sibyl, with Virginie Efira and Adèle Exarchopoulos; Retenir, presented in Venice, also with Adèle Exarchopoulos and the erotic drama Curiosa.

Premiere presentations

Each year, Cinemania‘s mandate is to present a selection of films that have been noticed at major international festivals to Montreal audiences.

The public will be able to see La vérité by Hirokazu Kore-Eda (Palme d’Or in 2018 for Une affaire de famille), presented at the opening of the Venice Mostra and which brings together Juliette Binoche and Catherine Deneuve to the screen for the first time; or Alice et le Maire (Alice and the mayor) by Nicolas Pariser with Fabrice Luchini and Anaïs Demoustier, in which Luchini depicts a distraught mayor of Lyon whom Anaïs Demoustier, a young philosopher, helps; Nicolas BedosLa Belle Époque, presented out of competition at the Cannes Film Festival and the last Toronto Film Festival, featuring Guillaume Canet, Doria Tillier, Daniel Auteuil and Fanny Ardant in a love story that spans ages and times; the romantic comedy Chambre 212 (Room 212), by Christophe Honoré, for the Canadian premiere, with Chiara Mastroianni and Benjamin Biolay; the Franco-Belgian war drama La miséricorde de la jungle (The Mercy of the Jungle), by Rwandan Joël Karekezi, or Roubaix, une lumière (Roubaix, a light), by Arnaud Desplechin, with Léa Seydoux and Sara Forestier, in the role of two drug addicted lovers accused of the murder of an elderly woman.

Cinemania presents, as usual, several North American premieres

Camille, that relates the death of French journalist Camille Lepage during a report in the Central African Republic; the drama Une chanson douce (A Soft Song), based on the best-selling novel of the same name; Bertrand Blier‘s Convoi exceptionnel, starring Gérard Depardieu, Guy Marchand and Alexandra Lamy; L’Adieu à la Nuit (Farewell to the Night) by André Téchiné, in which Catherine Deneuve depicts a grandmother powerless in the face of her grandson’s radicalization. J’irai où tu iras (I will go where you go), a comedy-drama by Géraldine Nakache filled with humour about the deep love between two sisters who are opposed by everything; the Franco-Taiwanese poetic drama L’autre continent (The Other Continent), by Romain Cogitore; La fille au bracelet (The Girl with the bracelet), a forensic thriller presented in Locarno and inspired by real events; Le meilleur reste à venir (The Best Is Yet to Come), a dramatic comedy that brings together Fabrice Luchini and Patrick Bruel on screen; Le milieu de l’horizon (The Middle of the Horizon) by Delphine Lehericey, with Laetitia Casta; The Best Years of a Life (Les plus belles années d’une vie) by Claude Lelouch, a moving stroll through the memories of a mythical couple, once again embodied by Jean-Louis Trintignant and Anouk Aimée (a Montreal premiere); Lola vers la mer (Lola towards the Sea), a road movie in which a father and his transgender daughter renew after years of silence; Anthony Marciano‘s romantic comedy Play, a bittersweet comedy; and also Rebelles, a French Thelma and Louise played by Cécile de France, Yolande Moreau and Audrey Lamy.

The Festival will also present 13 first feature films including: Atlantic (Atlantique), by Mati Diop, Grand Prix at the last Cannes Film Festival; Escape from Raqqa (Exfiltrés), by Emmanuel Hamon, a powerful story about the recruitment by the Islamic State with Swann Arlaud; La source (The Source), by Rodolphe Lauga, an autobiographical story about family ties; La dernière vie de Simon (Simon’s Last Life), in the presence of his director, Léo Karmann, who boldly and originally depicts the magic of childhood; and Vif Argent (Quick Silver), Stéphane Batut‘s first lyrical and fantastic film.


Documentary Cinéma, au féminin pluri(elles) and round table about the current situation
Friday, November 8, at 5 pm, at the Cinémathèque Québécoise.
The presentation of Patrick Fabre‘s documentary, which presents a portrait of the place of women filmmakers in the French film industry, will be the ideal opportunity to discuss the issue at the Francophone level. What recent developments and progress have been observed in Quebec, France and more broadly? The discussion will be moderated by journalist Helen Faradji.

Cross-discussion around Sympathy for the Devil
Sunday, November 10 at 4 pm, at the Phi
The premiere of Sympathy for the Devil at Cinemania will be an opportunity to evoke the indelible trace left by the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the collective memory. Montreal director Guillaume de Fontenay will return to what led him to become passionate about the atypical figure of war reporter Paul Marchand. He was driving around the city of Sarajevo under siege in an old car with the words: “Don’t shoot. Waste your bullets. I’m immortal“. Niels Schneider, who plays Merchant on screen, will share his filming experience. The discussion will be moderated by Jacques Beauchamp, host of Aujourd’hui l’histoire at Radio-Canada.

Virtual reality room
November 8 to 17, from 12:30 to 18:00, at the Imperial Cinema
In association with IHP, the Imperial Cinema mezzanine will host 4 interactive short films offering bold and exciting immersive experiences.

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Public meeting with festival guests
Saturday, November 9, 4 pm, at Sofitel Montréal Le Carré Doré
Hosted by Herby Moreau, the discussion will focus on the Oscar race, which will bring together Sophie Deraspe, director of Antigone, alongside Almamy Kanouté, Steve Tientcheu and Alexis Manenti from Ladj Ly‘s Les misérables, who represent Canada and France respectively this year at the Oscars.

Image Education in Quebec Symposium
November 12 and 13
In collaboration with the Consulate General of France in Quebec City and Mediafilm, each of the two days will begin with the screening of a feature film and will be followed by a discussion led by a specialized mediator. Finally, on November 14, a round table bringing together French and Quebec stakeholders and decision-makers will provide feedback on the activity and the formulation of recommendations on image education.


A jury composed of young people and presided over by actor and director Guillaume Lambert will choose the winner of the Jeunesse Francophone Prize TV5. The jury will present the award to one of 7 films in competition that are most representative of the Francophone world through their originality and cultural composition. The jury is made up of young Francophone professionals. And, of course, CINEMANIA filmgoers are encouraged to submit their votes for the annual Mel Hoppenheim Prix du Public.

Box Office Information

Tickets for all sessions, as well as passports, are now on sale on-line.

The general ticket office will be located at the Imperial Cinema and will be the only place to collect passports and ticket books-6 films from November 8 to 17. The passports purchased by Cinemania spectators will give access to all sessions in the various Festival venues (except for special events).

The partner theatres, Théâtre Outremont, Cinéma du Musée, Cinéma du Parc and Cinémathèque québécoise, will offer an on-site and online ticketing service on their respective sites for screenings that they will host only.

The Cinemania Film Festival would like to thank the main partners of this 25th edition, Air Canada, le Sofitel Montréal Le Carré Doré, la Banque transatlantique and Gestion Privée Desjardins for their trust.

Cinemania’s 25th edition will take place mainly at the Imperial Cinema, the festival’s headquarters, as well as at the Théâtre Outremont, Cinéma du Parc, Cinéma du Musée, Cinémathèque québécoise, Hôtel Sofitel and Phi.

Images courtesy of Festival Cinemania

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Cinemania, founded in 1995 by Maidy Teitelbaum, is one of the most important events in North America dedicated to francophone movies. Each year, during the 11 days of the Festival, more than 50 feature films selected from the most prestigious international festivals (Cannes, TIFF, Berlinale, Angouleme, etc.) premiere at Cinemania in their original versions, subtitled in English.

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