Everest Opens Venice Film Festival

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If making any movie is an uphill climb, spare a thought for the cast and crew of Everest, for whom the climb was less metaphorical and more gruellingly, freezingly literal. Fortunately with their ascent over the production descended on Venice where, in the much more habitable surroundings of the 72nd Venice Film Festival, the film received its gala premiere last night.

Inspired by real events, Everest focuses on two different expeditions pushed past breaking point during one of the bitterest snowstorms ever recorded, as they struggle to ascend world’s highest mountain.  The cinematic expedition has an impressive pedigree, with a cast including Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, John Hawkes, Robin Wright, Sam Worthington, Keira Knightley, Emily Watson and Jake Gyllenhaal, and scripted by two time Oscar nominee William Nicholson (Shadowlands, Gladiator) and Oscar winner Simon Beaufoy of Slumdog Millionaire. The directorial sherpa is Icelandic helmer Baltasar Kormákur.

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With the starting gun now fired on festival season, Universal and Working Title will be hoping to convert the positive buzz and healthy reviews coming out of The Floating City into awards momentum. Tales of human endurance in extreme circumstances have long been Academy favourites, and the filmmakers will hope their white knuckle 3D adventure will prove as popular with Oscar voters as Gravity two years ago.

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Everest is due for release in UK cinemas on September 18th, and will be reviewed very soon. Until then a sizzle reel from Venice is now online, along with a selection of production featurettes. Check them out below:

With thanks to Feref Limited.

David is a filmmaker, artist and failed astronaut from Birmingham, UK. His short films have been shown on BBC TV, at the BFI and at BAFTA. Only bats and small dogs are likely to have seen them. He has written for the stage and has exhibited artwork in Birmingham's municipal art gallery. Few can correctly guess his age, to his occasional annoyance.