Bozon’s France wins Jean Vigo
Serge Bozon’s second feature, France [+see also:
film profile], has received double honours in recent days. After its selection in the upcoming Cannes Directors’ Fortnight last Thursday, this weekend the film won the 56th Jean Vigo Prize, whose previous winners include Claude Chabrol, Maurice Pialat, Alain Resnais, Jean-Luc Godard and, more recently, Olivier Assayas, Claire Devers, Cédric Kahn, Jérôme Bonnell and Laurent Achard.
The jury, made up of former winners, critics and exhibitors, bestowed the award to a film that "may have weaknesses or be awkward" yet nevertheless displays "passion and talent."
Produced by David Thion for Les Films Pelléas, France stars Sylvie Testud (2004 Cesar for Best Actress with Fear and Trembling [+see also:
film profile]), Pascal Greggory and Guillaume Verdier.
Co-written by the director and his regular partner Axelle Ropert, the film is set in WWI. In autumn 1917, during the height of the war, Camille (Testud) leads a peaceful life in the north of France miles from the battlefields, until she receives an unexpected letter from her husband, who left for the front, breaking up their relationship. Disguised as a man, that same day she sets out to find him. In a forest, she comes across a small group of soldiers who do not suspect her true identity.
Sold internationally by Pyramide, the €1.82m France, to be released domestically by Shellac, was backed by CNC advances on receipts (€450,000), pre-sales from Ciné Cinéma and the Ile-de-France (€320,000).
The 2007 Jean Vigo Prize for Best Short went to F.J. Ossang’s Silencio, which will also screen in Directors’ Fortnight.
(Translated from French)
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