French director Leos Carax will receive the Pardo d’onore Swisscom at the forthcoming edition of the Festival del film Locarno.
To mark the occasion, the filmmaker’s five features – Boy Meets Girl (1984), Bad Blood (Mauvais Sang, 1986), The Lovers on the Bridge (Les Amants du Pont-Neuf, 1991), Pola X (1999)and Holy Motors (2012) – will be screened, as well as the portmanteau film Tokyo!, to which he contributed the segment Merde in 2008. On the day after the award ceremony on the Piazza Grande, the Festival audience will have the opportunity to participate in a conversation with the filmmaker.
Olivier Père, the Festival del film Locarno’s Artistic director, comments that he is « greatly honoured to invite one of world cinema’s greatest creatives to Locarno. The superb Boy Meets Girl and Bad Blood remain the most convincing aesthetic manifestos of the 1980s, The Lovers on the Bridgea dream of poetic cinema of unequalled ambition while, for me, Pola X, stunning in its beauty, sincerity and scope, is Leos Carax’s masterpiece. As for Holy Motors it is clearly already one of the best films of the year, a dazzling journey that combines life and cinema, full of emotion and breathtaking vision».
Read Olivier Père’s blog on Leos Carax (in French)
Read Olivier Père’s blog on Holy Motors (in English)
For the last 24 years the Festival del film Locarno’s Pardo d’onore has been awarded to a master of contemporary cinema; previous recipients include filmmakers of such stature as Manoel de Oliveira, Bernardo Bertolucci, Ken Loach, Jean-Luc Godard, Abbas Kiarostami, Aleksandr Sokurov, Hou Hsiao-hsien, William Friedkin, Alain Tanner, JIA Zhang-ke and, in 2011, Abel Ferrara.
Swisscom, main sponsor of the Festival del film Locarno since 1998, supports the Pardo d’onore for the fourth consecutive year.
The 65th edition of the Festival del film Locarno will take place 1- 11 August 2012.
Leos Carax biography:
Born in Suresnes in 1960, Leos Carax made, at the age of 23, his first feature, Boy Meets Girl (1984); greeted with enthusiasm by both audiences and critics alike, it won the Award of the Youth at the Cannes Festival. Two years later Carax directed his second film, Bad Blood (1986) which was likewise an international success, starring Juliette Binoche, Michel Piccoli and his favourite actor Denis Lavant. The film won the Louis Delluc Prize in France and the Alfred Bauer Award at Berlin in 1987. Carax followed this with The Lovers on the Bridge (1991), one of the biggest productions ever in French cinema history, a legendary opus and a superb love story, the making of which was subject to numerous incidents, problems and interruptions, turning into a financial black hole, that its critical and public acclaim did not manage to eclipse. The Lovers on the Bridge, starring Juliette Binoche and Denis Lavant, was screened in competition at the Berlin Festival. Pola X (1999), an adaptation of Herman Melville, with Guillaume Depardieu, Katerina Golubeva and Catherine Deneuve demonstrated a stunning visual and narrative ambition. This landmark in contemporary French film was, sadly, punished by box-office failure on its release. After a period away from film, Carax made the episode Merde for the portmanteau film Tokyo! (2008) alongside Michel Gondry and Bong Joon-ho.
2012 marks his triumphant return to mise en scène with Holy Motors (2012), once again starring Denis Lavant, alongside Edith Scob, Eva Mendes and Kylie Minogue. The film was screened in competition at the Cannes Festival.