Césars in love with Mouret

Nominations favour French ensemble romance

by Richard Mowe

Romance in the air for Niels Schneider and Camelia Jordana in Love Affairs by Emmanuel Mouret
Romance in the air for Niels Schneider and Camelia Jordana in Love Affairs by Emmanuel Mouret Photo: Moby Dick Films/UniFrance
A record total of 13 nominations has been bestowed on a romantic French exploration of love, friendship and fidelity for this year’s top French film awards, the Césars (the Gallic equivalent of the Oscars) due to be revealed on 12 March live at the Olympia Theatre in Paris.

The top scorer Love Affair(s) (The Things We Say, The Things We Do) had previously won best film at the Lumière Awards, given by the foreign press association in France and the equivalent of Hollywood’s Golden Globes. It features an ensemble cast of Camelia Jordana, Niels Schneider, Vincent Macaigne and Julia Piaton. It has been nominated for best film as well as best director for Emmanuel Mouret.

Other close-runners in the number of nominations are black comedy Bye Bye Morons from actor-director Albert Dupontel and starring Dupontel and Virginie Efira and François Ozon’s bitter sweet coming of age tale Summer of 85. Efira and Dupontel are nominated for best actress and actor while Summer of 85’s leads Benjamin Voisin and Felix Lefebvre earn best male newcomer nods.

Caroline Vignal’s bucolic comedy My Donkey, My Lover and I also scored strongly with eight nominations, including a best actress one for Laure Calamy from Netflix’s Call My Agent and for best supporting actor for Benjamin Lavernhe as well as original screenplay for Vignal herself.

The widely admired acting duo of Martine Chevallier and Barbara Sukowa in Felippo Meneghetti’s lesbian love affair Two Of Us are both nominated in the best actress category. The film also represents France in the international film slot at the Oscars.

Actor-director Albert Dupontel … César nominated for Bye Bye Morons
Actor-director Albert Dupontel … César nominated for Bye Bye Morons Photo: UniFrance
Maïwenn’s family saga DNA earns the actor-director a best director nomination (the only female in the running) while cast members Fanny Ardant and Louis Garrel figure in the best supporting actress and actor lists.

One surprise selection as the inclusion of Sebastien Lifshitz’s Adolescents in the best film category - the first time in the history of the awards that a documentary has been included as well as featuring in the documentary section.

Two black filmmakers figure in the selections for best first film - Maimouna Doucouré for Cuties and Jean-Pascal Zadi for Tout Simplement Noir.

The nominations in full:

Best Film

  • Bye Bye Morons (Albert Dupontel)
  • Adolescents (Sébastien Lifshitz)
  • My Donkey, My Lover & I (Caroline Vignal)
  • Love Affair(s) (Emmanuel Mouret)
  • Summer of 85 (François Ozon)

Best Director

  • Albert Dupontel (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Maîwenn (DNA)
  • Sébastien Lifshitz (Adolescents
  • Emmanuel Mouret (Love Affair(s))
  • François Ozon (Summer of 85

Best First Film

  • Two Of Us (Filippo Meneghetti)
  • My Best Part (Nicolas Maury)
  • Cuties, (Maïmouna Doucouré)
  • Tout Simplement Noir (Jean-Pascal Zadi)
  • Arab Blues (Manele Labidi)

Best Actress

  • Laure Calamy (My Donkey, My Lover & I)
  • Martine Chevallier (Two Of Us)
  • Virginie Efira (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Camélia Jordana (Love Affair(s))
  • Barbara Sukowa (Two Of Us)

Best Actor

  • Sami Bouajila (A Son)
  • Jonathan Cohen (Enormous)
  • Albert Dupontel (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Niels Schneider (Love Affair(s))
  • Lambert Wilson (De Gaulle)

Best Foreign Film

Best Supporting Actress

  • Fanny Ardant (DNA)
  • Valeria Bruni Tedeschi (Summer Of 85)
  • Emilie Dequenne (Love Affair(s))
  • Noémie Lvovsky (How To Be A Good Wife)
  • Yolande Moreau (How To Be A Good Wife)

Best Supporting Actor

  • Edouard Baer (How To Be A Good Wife)
  • Louis Garrel (DNA)
  • Benjamin Lavernhe (My Donkey, My Lover & I)
  • Vincent Macaigne (Love Affair(s))
  • Nicolas Mairé (Bye Bye Morons)

Best Female Newcomer

Best Male Newcomer

  • Guang Huo (Night Ride)
  • Félix Lefebvre (Summer Of 85)
  • Benjamin Voisin (Summer Of 85)
  • Alexandre Wetter (Miss)
  • Jean-Pascal Zadi (Tout Simplement Noir)

Best Original Screenplay

  • Albert Dupontel (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Caroline Vignal (My Donkey, My Lover & I)
  • Emmanuel Mouret (Love Affair(s))
  • Filippo Meneghetti, Malysone Bovorashy (Two Of Us)
  • Benoît Delépine & Gustave Kerven (Delete History)

Best Adapted Screenplay

  • Olivier Assayas (Wasp Network)
  • Hannelore Cayre, Jean-Paul Salomé, (Mamma Weed)
  • François Ozon (Summer Of 85)
  • Stéphanie Demoustier (The Girl With A Bracelet)
  • Eric Barbier (Small Country: An African Childhood)

Best Cinematography

  • Alexis Kavyrchine (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Antoine Parouty, Paul Guilhaume, (Adolescents)
  • Simon Beaufils (My Donkey, My Lover & I)
  • Laurent Desmet (Love Affair(s))
  • Hichame Alaouié (Summer Of 85)

Best Editing

  • Christophe Pinel (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Tina Baz (Adolescents)
  • Annette Dutertre (My Donkey, My Lover & I)
  • Marital Salomon (Love Affair(s))
  • Laure Gardette (Summer Of 85)

Best Costume Design

  • Mimi Lempicka (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Madeline Fontaine (How To Be A Good Wife)
  • Hélène Davoudian (Love Affair(s))
  • Anaïs Romand & Sergio Ballo (De Gaulle)
  • Pascaline Chavanne (Summer Of 85)

Best Production Design

  • Carlos Conti (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Thierry François (How To Be A Good Wife)
  • David Faivre (Love Affair(s))
  • Nicolas De Boiscuillé (De Gaulle)
  • Benoît Barouh (Summer Of 85)

Best Animated Feature

  • Calamity, A Childhood Of Martha Jane Cannary (Rémi Chayé)
  • Josep (Aurel)
  • Little Vampire (Joann Sfar)

Best Documentary

  • Adolescents (Sébastien Lifshitz)
  • The Tie (Etienne Chaillou, Mathias Théry)
  • Cyrille (Rodolphe Marconi)
  • Histoire D’Un Regard (Mariana Otero)
  • Un Pays Qui Se Tient Sage (David Du Fresne)

Best Score

  • Christophe Julien (Bye Bye Morons)
  • Stephen Warbeck (DNA)
  • Mateï Bratescot (My Donkey, My Lover & I)
  • Jean-Benoït Dunckel (Summer Of 85)
  • Rone (Night Ride)

Love Affair(s) and Mama Weed will be available to view online as part of fff @ home (The Sequel) from 12 to 27 March at frenchfilmfestival.org.uk

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