William Friedkin To Receive Special Venice Golden Lion; Restored 'Sorcerer' To World Premiere At Festival

Veteran French Connection and Exorcist helmer William Friedkin will receive the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the Venice Film Festival later this year. Friedkin has a history with the festival where his 1995 thriller Jade appeared in the Notti Veneziane section. More recently, the gritty Killer Joe ran in competition in 2011. At the 70th edition of Venice this year (August 28-September 7), he’ll present the world premiere of a Warner Bros restoration of the 1977 film Sorcerer, his take on Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Wages Of Fear that starred Roy Scheider. “I consider Sorcerer my most personal film and the most difficult to achieve. To realize that it’s going to have a new life in cinema is something for which I’m deeply grateful,” the director said. Venice chief Alberto Barbera praised Friedkin, saying he “has contributed in a prominent way — the revolutionary impact of which has not always been recognized — to the profound renewal of American cinema regarded as ‘the New Hollywood’.”

  1. This film has always been shoved aside. It opened one week after ‘Star Wars’ and replaced ‘Star Wars’ at the Chinese Theater (there’s a 20 foot mural in a B of A on Prospect Avenue, Hollywood that ensconces this one week run) and was quickly booted for the return of ‘Star Wars’ to the Chinese. The cinema of the 70’s was at full on war between the backward/forward space opera that was ‘Star Wars’ and the interior film that was ‘Sorcerer’. Sorcerer lost the 70’s and decades beyond but it’s a fantastic film that will prove itself again and again. Taking nothing from ‘Star Wars’ which is great cinema as well, ‘Sorcerer’ deserves its full run at the theater it was pulled from, the great Chinese Theater on Hollywood Boulevard. And do believe me, there is a rather lovely painting of this in a B of A (of all places) on Prospect in Hollywood. Best to you Friedkin.

    1. STAR WARS was released at the end of May, THE DEEP on June 15 and SORCERER on the 22nd.

  2. Sorcerer screens tonight at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in NYC. Friedkin will be in attendance for a Q+A. Unsure if this will be the restored version, but I can’t really imagine it wouldn’t be. A great film in 1977, a great film today.

    1. See above, Bob. The world premiere of the restoration will be at the Venice Film Festival in August.

  3. does this means Sorcerer is coming out on BluRay? please please please please please.

    Sorcerer is a fantastic film. Incredible. Anyone who says “you can’t do a good remake” should see Sorcerer. It’s a remake, and a perfect film.

  4. Does anyone know if the restored version includes footage that was not in the original release? Waylon Green’s original script was fabulous, but Friedkin spent way too much screen time on the back stories of the characters and cut out a lot of the suspenseful driving sequences that had been in the screenplay.

  5. I don’t envy the production crew on Sorceror, that must have been an extremely tough shoot. Especially the bridge sequence. I listen to Tangerine Dream’s unconventional score for Sorceror all the time – in fact coincidentally I was listening to it today and yesterday.

    1. The bridge sequence was ready to shoot at the Dominican Republic and a hurricane destroyed the set. It was rebuild in Vera Cruz ( Mexico )

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