The France’s Academy of Arts and Sciences unveiled their nominations for this year’s César Awards a few weeks ago, and the night the winners will be announced has finally arrived.
George Cravene, was the young age of 13 years old when he became inspired by the American film industry’s Academy Awards, otherwise known as the Oscars. Holding onto that inspiration, Cravene grew up to create France’s own ceremony to honor the best films in the birthplace of cinema: Paris, France.
Created in 1974, the César Awards take place once a year (This year’s date is tonight, March 2, 2018) to crown cinematic professionals whose fervid passion, unwavering dedication, and notable character make the French film industry special.
Voting is done by the Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinema (or the Academy), whose members are the crème de la crème among the film industry’s professionals and personalities, and tonight’s Césars will be presented by the hilarious French comedian Manu Payet.
Each French film can be nominated in any category (Categories include “Best Short Film”, “Best Female Lead”, “Best Sound”, “Best Original Screenplay”, etc) with some even raking in more than eight nominations.
In early February, the academy voted on French films (must have been released on Jan 1 to Dec 31 of the previous year to be eligible), then the public found out who stood out and garnered a coveted César Award nomination(s).
Let us take a trip down memory lane and reminisce on a few of our favorite films nominated:
Co-directed by the guys that brought you Intouchables, Le Sens De La Fête or C’est la Vie, is a comedic film that follows a wedding planner who has been entrusted to pull off the wedding of the year for a very important client.
This French film not only has you out of your seat laughing, but also explores the true feeling of what it means to count on the people in your life. Be sure to keep an eye out during tonight’s César Awards to see if Le Sens De La Fête takes home a César Award for categories: Best Feature Film, Best Editing, Best Sound, Best Original Screenplay, and more.
Another particularly notable film is Visages Villages directed by Agnés Varda and J.R. The film is nominated for is Best Original Documentary, for its unlikely story of Agnés Varda, age 50, and photographer/muralist J.R. who travel across France to inspire the magic of art into everyone they see.
Agnes Varda is an authentic French Film director who was a central figure to the French New Wave Film Movement that shaped the way French cinema is created today.
Films up for a César Award like 120 Battements Par Minute tell the stories of pivotal events central to the history of Paris, France. Directed by Robin Campillo, 120 Battements Par Minute tells the inspiring story of Act Up, the advocacy group in Paris, France that demanded action by the government and pharmaceutical companies to combat the Aids Epidemic in the 1990s.
But how has authentic French culture been kept alive?
With Cultural Exception (or l’exception culturelle francaise), a phrase all foreigners should get acquainted with as it refers to the protections created by the government to prevent French culture from being swallowed up by foreign cultures.
Thus, insuring the preservation of the je ne sais quoi French film offers, that the whole world can experience too.