Giannoli and Carax scoop the Césars

Huppert honours Blanchett at ceremony in Paris

by Richard Mowe

Winning ways: Benjamin Voisin who was named best male newcomer for Lost Illusions which took the top prize at the Césars as best film
Winning ways: Benjamin Voisin who was named best male newcomer for Lost Illusions which took the top prize at the Césars as best film Photo: Lost Illusions
Antoine de Caunes in full flood as host of the Césars at the Olympia Theatre in Paris - France’s equivalent of the Oscars
Antoine de Caunes in full flood as host of the Césars at the Olympia Theatre in Paris - France’s equivalent of the Oscars Photo: Canal+
In the capable and affable hands of host Antoine de Caunes this year’s 47th edition of France’s answer to the Oscars, the Césars unfurled without any major embarrassments or disruption - with the top prize going to Xavier Giannoli’s lavish period piece Lost Illusions and a best newcomer award for Benjamin Voisin.

His co-conspirator in the film Vincent Lacoste was named best supporting actor and the much favoured production picked up awards for cinematography and best adapted screenplay.

Giannoli was not available to pick up the prize in person at the Olympia Theatre and neither was Annette director Leos Carax whose film was the other significant focus of the evening scooping a best director accolade as well as prizes for best sound, best editing, best original score and visual effects.

The much loved icon Valerie Lemercier was rewarded with a best actress statuette for Aline, inspired by Canadian singing star Celine Dion, and which she also directed. Best actor honours went to Benoît Magimel as a cancer sufferer in emotional conflict with his mother played by Catherine Deneuve in Emmanuelle Bercot’s Peaceful/De son vivant.

Cate Blanchett who received an honorary César for the sum of her career … bestowed by Isabelle Huppert at the Césars
Cate Blanchett who received an honorary César for the sum of her career … bestowed by Isabelle Huppert at the Césars Photo: Canal+
The Cannes Palme d’Or winner Titane left empty-handed but Audrey Diwan’s Venice success Happening scored a best female newcomer nod for Anamaria Vartolomei. Aissatou Diallo Sagna who used her own hospital background to playa nurse in Catherine Corsini’s The Divide was named best actress in a supporting role.

The grand dame of French cinema Isabelle Huppert presented an honorary César to Cate Blanchett who responded by saying that it was difficult to think of anything else this evening in the shadow of the war in Ukraine. Blanchett continued: “But as Antoine said at the start of the ceremony we are here to celebrate cinema. It is such an honour to receive this accolade from Isabelle who is someone who epitomises French cinema. I believe in the power of the Seventh Art to change things.”

A tribute to actor Gaspard Ulliel, who died recently in a ski-ing accident aged 37 was paid in an emotional tribute by Quebec actor and director Xavier Dolan who had written two roles for him that had never got made. Veteran Jean-Paul Belmondo was also remembered on screen following his death last September at the age of 88.

Best Film

Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues, Xavier Giannoli

Best Director

Leos Carax, Annette

Best Actress

Valerie Lemercier, Aline

Best Actor

Benoit Magimel, Living

Best Actress in Supporting Role

Aissatou Diallo Sagna, The Divide/La Fracture.

Best Actor in Supporting Role

Vincent Lacoste, Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues

Best Female Newcomer

Anamaria Vartolomei, Happening/L'Événement

Best Male Newcomer

Benjamin Voisin, Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues

Best Screenplay

Arthur Harari, Vincent Poymiro, Onoda, 10,000 Nights In The Jungle/Onoda, 10.000 nuits dans la jungle

Best Adapted Screenplay

Xavier Giannoli, Jacques Fieschi, Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues

Best Animated Feature

The Summit Of The Gods/Le Sommet des dieux, Patrick Imbert

Best Animated Short

Folie Douce, Folie Dure, Marine Laclotte

Best Documentary Feature

The Velvet Queen/La Panthère des neiges, Marie Amiguet, Vincent Munier

Best First Film

Magnetic Beats/Les Magnétiques, Vincent Maél Cardona

Best Foreign Film

The Father, Florian Zeller.

Best Original Score

Annette (Sparks - Ron Male, Russell Mael)

Best Sound

Annette (Erwan Kerzanet, Katia Boutin, Maxence Dussere, Paul Heymans & Thomas Gauder)

Best Visual Effects (first time at the Césars)

Annette (Guillaume Pondard)

Best Cinematography

Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues (Christophe Beaucarne)

Best Editing

Annette (Nelly Quettier)

Best Costumes

Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues (designer Pierre-Jean Laroque)

Best Set Design

Lost Illusions/Illusions perdues (art director Riton Dupire-Clément)

Best Documentary Short

Maalbeek (Joffroy Chandoutis)

Best Fiction Short

Les Mauvais garçons (Elie Girard)

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