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The 2021 recipient of the Excellence Award Davide Campari knows how hard it is to move beyond a cliché. Because she did it. For years, Laetitia Casta was the pure image of beauty, of a marvelous, impeccable human aesthetic. She catwalks all over the world. She appears on hundreds of magazine covers. She is sought after and celebrated. The weight of this “supermodel” image can be crushing for those who must carry it on their shoulders. Not for her. Over the years, Laetitia Casta has reinvented herself with a particular mix of patience and tenacity. She did it on the big screen with international auteurs like Raúl Ruiz (Savage Souls, 2001) and Tsai Ming-liang (Face, 2009) as well as on the small screen, with two masters of Italian cinema (Luisa Sanfelice, Paolo and Vittorio Taviani, 2004). She knew how to be popular and free (Falbala in Asterix and Obelix vs. Caesar, Claude Zidi, 1999, and Claudia in A Woman as a Friend, Giovanni Veronesi, 2014). She shined in a music video with Rihanna (Te Amo, 2009), and on stage, by recent Academy Award winner Florian Zeller in Elle t'attend (2008). In all of her work, Laetitia Casta embodies the spirit, attitude and talent to which Locarno must offer the honor and scale of the Piazza Grande stage as tribute. This underlines the simple truth that whether voicing a parrot (Rio, Carlos Saldanha, 2011) or making a stunning directorial debut with a short film (En moi, Laetitia Casta, 2016), Laetitia Casta is able to embody every bit of the charisma, power and intelligence that she is known for and continually defined by.
Giona A. Nazzaro, artistic director of the Locarno Film Festival: “Laetitia Casta personifies a highly modern concept of cinema, in tune with the ongoing transformation of audiences and moving images. Her artistic research has led her to work with some of the most innovative filmmakers of recent times, while conserving the unique and unmistakable acting style typical of classic cinema. Her ability to be both sophisticated and popular, an accessible diva, the bearer of a cultivated, strategic and profoundly European glamor, makes Laetitia Casta an emblematic figure of the kind of cinema of which Locarno is an expression, as also the perfect guest for a Piazza Grande that can once again welcome its audience in person. To open the 74th edition of the Locarno Film Festival by handing the Excellence Award to Laetitia Casta is a sign of hope that allows us to look to the future with confidence and enthusiasm.”
The Excellence Award Davide Campari 2021 will be given to Laetitia Casta on the evening of the 4th of August, in Piazza Grande. During the 74th edition of the Festival there will be screenings of two titles chosen by the actress from her filmography:
On August 4, at 12 pm at the Forum @Rotonda by la Mobiliare, Laetitia Casta will take the lead in a panel conversation with the public.
After the prize for The Films After Tomorrow in 2020, the Campari Group continues its journey in support of the film arts and the Locarno Film Festival by presenting a new prize: the Excellence Award Davide Campari.