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2018 Mill Valley Film Festival to Spotlight Paul Dano and Carey Mulligan in ‘Wildlife’

Carey Mulligan and Paul Dano at the 71st annual Cannes Film Festival
(Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)


The Mill Valley Film Festival has announced that the first MVFF Award of 2018, a Spotlight presentation on IFC Films’ WILDLIFE, will feature an onstage conversation with writer/director PAUL DANO and star CAREY MULLIGAN. The MVFF award is being presented in acknowledgement of the creative collaboration between Dano and Mulligan.

After a whirlwind year of festivals, from premiering at Sundance to Cannes to Toronto next month, Dano and Mulligan will hit Northern California for a conversation that will explore the director-actor relationship, and how they work together to distill the anatomy of the creative process that leads to great on screen performances.

WILDLIFE is the directorial debut of actor Paul Dano (THERE WILL BE BLOOD, LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE), co-written with Zoe Kazan (THE BIG SICK). Elegantly adapted from Richard Ford’s novel of the same name, Oscar nominee Carey Mulligan (MUDBOUND, AN EDUCATION) delivers one of her finest performances to date as Jeanette, a complex woman whose self-determination and self-involvement disrupts the values and expectations of a 1960s nuclear family. Fourteen-year-old Joe played by newcomer Ed Oxenbould, is the only child of Jeanette (Mulligan) and Jerry (Oscar nominee Jake Gyllenhaal)—a housewife and a golf pro—in a small town in 1960s Montana. Nearby, an uncontrolled forest fire rages close to the Canadian border, and when Jerry loses his job—and his sense of purpose—he decides to join the cause of fighting the fire, leaving his wife and son to fend for themselves. Suddenly forced into the role of an adult, Joe witnesses his mother’s struggle as she tries to keep her head above water. With precise details and textures of its specific time and place, WILDLIFE commits to the viewpoint of a teenage boy observing the gradual dissolution of his parents’ marriage.

IFC Films will open Wildlife in theatres Friday, October 19th. Read my review of the film, featuring Carey Mulligan’s in a career-best performance.

The 41st Mill Valley Film Festival will take place October 4th-14th. The full slate will be revealed on September 6th.

About Erik Anderson

Erik thanks his mother for his love of all things Oscar, having watched the Academy Awards together since he was in the single digits; making lists, rankings and predictions throughout the show. This led him down the path to obsessing about awards. Much later, he found himself at GoldDerby, led by Tom O’Neill and then migrated over to Oscarwatch (now AwardsDaily), headed up by Sasha Stone before breaking off to create AwardsWatch. He is a member of the International Cinephile Society, GALECA (The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics), the International Press Academy and is the founder/owner of AwardsWatch.

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