Nicolas Winding Refn's The Neon Demon to Cannes

CANNES. Nicolas Winding Refn is back in Competition in Cannes with his Danish-produced horror tale "The Neon Demon," starring Elle Fanning as a young aspiring model in Los Angeles.

Danish director Nicolas Winding Refn's new film "The Neon Demon" is selected for Competition at the Cannes Film Festival (11-22 May). It's the third time Refn will compete for the the Palme d'Or. "Only God Forgives" was selected in 2013, and "Drive" won him the Best Director Award in 2011.

In "The Neon Demon," Winding Refn focuses on our generation's obsession with beauty and perfect appearances. Elle Fanning plays a young woman, Jesse, who moves to Los Angeles to try to start a modelling career. But her youth and vitality are devoured by a group of beauty-obsessed women who will take any means necessary to get what she has.


Danish films in competition since 2000

2016 The Neon Demon / Nicolas Winding Refn / Space Rocket Nation

2013 / Only God Forgives / Nicolas Winding Refn / Space Rocket Nation

2012 / The Hunt / Thomas Vinterberg / Zentropa

2011 / Drive / Nicolas Winding Refn / (U.S. production)

2011 / Melancholia / Lars von Trier / Zentropa

2009 / Antichrist / Lars von Trier / Zentropa

2005 / Manderlay / Lars von Trier / Zentropa

2003 / Dogville / Lars von Trier / Zentropa

2000 / Dancer in the Dark / Lars von Trier / Zentropa

In addition to Fanning, the cast include Jena Malone, Keanu Reeves, Karl Glusman, Bella Heathcote, Abbey Lee and Christina Hendricks. The film is developed in Denmark, shot in Los Angeles and edited and post-produced back in Denmark with a Danish and international team.

Long-time collaborators behind the camera

Behind the camera, the director has teamed up with two of his regular partners: editor Matthew Newman ("Bronson," "Drive," "Only God Forgives") and composer Cliff Martinez ("Drive," "Only God Forgives"). They are joined by director of photography Natasha Braier, sound desiger Eddie Simonsen and visual effects supervisor Peter Hjort. The director's long-time collaborator Lene Børglum has produced the film for her and Refn's joint company Space Rocket Nation.

As with Winding Refn's previous film "Only God Forgives," French sales companies Wild Bunch and Gaumont are on board to co-finance and co-distribute. The film has received funding from the Danish Film Institute. It will be released in Denmark on 9 June, around the same time as in France, the UK, Italy and the U.S. Amazon distributes the film in North America, while Scanbox is the film's domestic distributor.

Nicolas Winding Refn made his directorial debut 20 years ago with "Pusher" (1996). He has attracted international attention for films such as "Bronson" (2009), "Valhalla Rising" (2010), "Drive" (2011) and "Only God Forgives" (2013). In 2014, he served as Cannes Competition jury member.

The festival kicks of on 11 May and hasn't yet revealed its full lineup.

Cannes Film Festival (11-22 May)