Friday, February 10, 2017


On January 7th, our historic Egyptian Theatre hosted the Golden Globe Foreign-Language Symposium, which welcomed the 5 nominated directors and droves of ardent film aficionados. The symposium crowned a week-long screening series of all the films, many of which boasted appearances from the filmmakers. Audiences near and far were able to enjoy the panel discussion both inside the auditorium and at home through an exclusive live stream.

Actress Isabelle Huppert and Director Paul Verhoeven won big as Elle won the Golden Globe for Best Foreign-Language Film the following night. Photographs by Jared Cowan
Actor and filmmaker Gael Garcia Bernal was onsite to support Pablo Larrain's Neruda, in which he plays a detective hunting down Chilean poet-on-the-run Pablo Neruda. Photographs by Jared Cowan
The Salesman director Asghar Farhadi greets members of the press at a private reception at Liaison in Hollywood. Photographs by Jared Cowan

After a private reception a Liaison, pictured above, the filmmakers made their way into the Egyptian's Rigler Theatre. The panel was made up of the 5 Golden Globe-nominated directors: Asghar Farhadi (THE SALESMAN), Maren Ade (TONI ERDMANN), Paul Verhoeven (ELLE), Pablo Larrain (NERUDA) and Houda Benyamina (DIVINES), who engaged with moderator Sam Asi on everything from favorite scenes to sexism in film. Below are some clips taken from the symposium live stream:

 The Salesman filmmaker Asghar Farhadi comments on the complex nature of portraying infidelity in cinema. The film tells the story of a couple whose relationship begins to turn sour during their performance of Arthur Miller's Death of a Salesman. 

Director Maren Ade on how her relationship with her father served as inspiration for Toni Erdmann and how a pair of prop Austin Powers teeth inspired one of the film's most memorable motifs. Erdmann is a thoughtful comedy about a practical joker who hopes to loosen up his career-centric daughter by visitng her in the guise of a business consultant.

"Provocation is nothing more than doing exactly comes to your mind," comments Paul Verhoeven as he is asked to address how he dealt with  portraying controversial subject matter in his film. Elle is a complex psychological thriller in which the head of a leading video game company is attacked in her home by an unknown assailant, whom she tracks down resolutely.

Neruda director  Pablo Larrain on how cinema is always a "political act." Starring Gael Garcia Bernal, the film follows an inspector who is hunting down Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda, who becomes a fugitive in his home country in the late 1940s for joining the Communist Party. 

Houda Benyamina talks about the immigrant population she portrays in her film, a community she grew up in. Divines is a drama about a streetwise teen and her best friend draw into the orbit of a Paris drug dealer.

Moderator Sam Asi and the 5 Golden Globe-nominated directors take center stage at the Egyptian. Photographs by Jared Cowan
Representatives from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the entity in charge of producing the Golden Globes ceremony, join the filmmakers before heading inside for the symposium. Photographs by Jared Cowan
Some of the film's leading actors take a bow before a sold-out audience and share a few words of praise for their directors. Photographs by Jared Cowan
The symposium was live streamed both on Youtube and Facebook live in order to accommodate interest from audiences all over the world. Photographs by Jared Cowan
Toni Erdmann director Maren Ade shared that, at times, she wasn't sure whether her film would eventually turn out to be a comedy or a drama and thus decided to embrace elements of both genres. Photographs by Jared Cowan
Houda Benyamina had high praise to share for her sister, whose talent she likened to Marlon Brando's and who plays the lead role in Divines. Photographs by Jared Cowan
Elle's Paul Verhoeven greets crowds of admirers after the symposium, many of which lined up in the Egyptian's courtyard since the early morning to ensure they secured a seat inside the theatre. Photographs by Jared Cowan
After the symposium, both filmmakers and audience mingled at our lobby reception. Photographs by Jared Cowan

If you missed the symposium, you can access the live stream archive both on Facebook and on Youtube. Looking for more information on this recurrent series? Access it here.