It's Oscar campaigning time! All over the US, filmmakers are doing the rounds, corralling, cajoling, carousing and mostly, getting Academy members to vote for their movie in the 2014 Academy Awards.
Last night, Flemish director Felix van Groeningen and his leading lady Veerle Baetens were at New York's Flanders House (where the Flanders Tourism lives) to screen their poignant Oscar hopeful (for Best Foreign Film), The Broken Circle Breakdown.
The movie features the heart-rending story of a young couple (Veerle Baetens and Johan Heldenbergh) loving and ultimately losing their daughter to cancer and the aftermath of that "Broken Circle."
Didier (Heldenbergh) is a Kentucky Bluegrass performer who is in love with the "twang" of the banjo and American culture. His partner Elise is a free-spirited tattoo artist. When things turn tragic, Didier's love for the US turns to anger at George Bush et al for vetoing stem cell research.
TravelHushHush was asked at the screening if we thought US audiences would embrace the film, its love/hate relationship with American culture and its "cameos" by a televised George Bush.
Our take: Bring a box of Kleenex and expect to be thrilled by soulful performances and equally soulful versions of traditional Kentucky Bluegrass songs. Also expect that the incandescent Veerle Baetens may turn up in the next Quentin Tarantino or Steve McQueen film.
As the film industry takes a cue from the web and becomes more and more global, the next Christoph Waltz or Marion Cotillard could very well come from Flanders film fields...