Ken Loach’s latest film I, Daniel Blake took home the top prize – Palme d’Or – at the Cannes Film Festival this past May. The win marked the second time Loach (who directed his first film in 1967 – Poor Cow) had received the prize – the first being for the 2006 feature The Wind That Shakes the Barley. It appears the film is now looking to cement an awards run as Sundance Selects will release the film on December 23rd. The film will opened in limited engagement at first (likely in Los Angeles and New York) followed by an expansion in weeks to follow.
What will be interesting to follow is if Loach’s latest will be able to find any traction in the Academy; despite Loach’s prolific and acclaimed career he has yet to receive a single Oscar nomination. Sundance Selects, sister to IFC Films, has had some luck garnering nominations in the last few years as Charlotte Rampling earned a Best Actress nod earlier this year for 45 Years and Marion Cotillard scored for Two Days, One Night a year prior in the same category.
If nothing else, I, Daniel Blake may appeal to certain liberal sensibility as the movie centers around Daniel (Dave Johns), a carpenter who requires state welfare following a heart attack and an injury on the job. Daniel finds support in single mother named Kate (Hayley Squires, A Royal Night Out) in a similar predicament.