Press Releases  ·  28 | 05 | 2024

Claude Barras to Receive the Locarno Kids Award la Mobiliare at Locarno77

The Swiss animator will be awarded the prize given to personalities credited with bringing younger generations to cinema. The artist behind the beloved modern classic Ma vie de Courgette (My Life as a Zucchini, 2016), Barras will present his latest feature film Sauvages (2024) – which recently premiered in Cannes – on the Piazza Grande on the evening of Tuesday, August 13.

©Adrienne Bovet

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After debuting in 2016, Claude Barras’ beloved stop-motion comedy Ma vie de Courgette, co-written with Céline Sciamma, quickly achieved international success, winning two César Awards and being nominated for the Oscar for Best Animated Feature Film in 2017. Together with Nancy Huston and Morgan Navarro, Barras began to develop the idea for a new animated feature the following year, which he then co-wrote with Catherine Paillé. The result is the long-anticipated Sauvages (2024), which will travel to Locarno after premiering at Cannes. About an Orangutan fighting to save the forests of Borneo with his friends, Barras’ latest animated work will have its Swiss premiere on the Piazza Grande on the evening of Tuesday, August 13 after the award ceremony for Barras, followed by a public conversation with the director the following morning.

The Locarno Kids Award la Mobiliare is a Locarno Film Festival prize dedicated to a personality who has inspired a love for cinema in younger viewers, filling them with a sense of discovery about the wonders of the big screen. Barras’ animations are exemplary in this regard, aspiring to a socially conscious form of filmmaking that nonetheless remains endlessly entertaining and exquisitely crafted.

Giona A. Nazzaro, Artistic Director: Claude Barras is one of the great shapers of the contemporary collective imagination. The Mélièsian brilliance of his animations links directly back to the origins of cinema, intertwining with the technological transformations of contemporary cinema. An artist with an inimitable touch from his earliest beginnings, Barras is the proponent of a civil and committed cinema whose work – both avant-garde and popular – has fostered a fertile intergenerational dialogue, placing the key nodes of our relationship with the world and the environment at the center of his actions. A poet and visionary, Claude Barras is a unique auteur in contemporary cinema: the Locarno Film Festival is honored to celebrate him on the Piazza Grande with the prestigious Locarno Kids Award la Mobiliare.

The Locarno Kids Award la Mobiliare was created in 2021 and in previous editions went to Mamoru Hosoda (2021), Gitanjali Rao (2022), and Luc Jacquet (2023).

The Tribute Program

Claude Barras will be in Piazza Grande to receive the award on the evening of Tuesday, August 13. His latest film – Sauvages – will have its Swiss premiere on the Piazza Grande that evening, in Barras’ presence:

Sauvages – Switzerland, France, Belgium – 2024

On Wednesday, August 14 the public will have a chance to meet with the filmmaker during a panel conversation to be held at the Forum @ Spazio Cinema.

In addition to Sauvages, Ma vie de Courgette and a selection of Barras’ early animated shorts will be presented as part of the Locarno Kids Screenings afternoon program.

 

The 77th Locarno Film Festival will take place from 7 to 17 August 2024.

Claude Barras – Bio

Born in Sierre on January 19, 1973, Claude Barras is a Swiss film director and producer. The son and grandson of farmers, he studied childrens’ illustration at the Émile Cohl school, anthropology and digital images at the Lumière University in Lyon, and 3D computer graphics at the École cantonale d’art de Lausanne.

After completing his studies, he co-directed Banquise (2005) with Cédric Louis, his first animated short, which was selected in Official Competition at the 2006 Cannes Film Festival. From there, Barras went on to produce and direct a dozen animated shorts for the Hélium Films animation collective, which were selected and awarded at numerous festivals. He also began to teach animation at the Applied Arts School in Geneva and at La Poudrière School in Valence. He began directing his first feature film in 2013: Ma vie de Courgette, unveiled at Cannes in 2016 and distributed in over 60 countries, has so far attracted over 175,000 viewers in Switzerland and 800,000 in France alone. Sauvages, his new animated feature, was presented in the Special Screening of the Official Selection of the Cannes 2024 Film Festival. Barras is currently developing a documentary series on excrement and an adaptation, co-written with Christelle Berthevas, of Fabien Toulmé’s comic strip Ce n’est pas toi que j’attendais.

Locarno Kids Activities

Once again this year, thanks to the collaborations with the Festival’s educational partners (DFA - SUPSI, RSI, Castellinaria - Festival del cinema giovane, LAC edu, Cinemagia, La Lanterna Magica and LernFilm Festival), Locarno is excited to offer a range of meetings, workshops, and ateliers dedicated to children and young people. It will be certain to be an exhilarating journey to explore and learn about the magic of cinema. Additionally, there will be a rich program of films with the Locarno Kids Screenings, the selection that the Festival dedicates each year to younger audiences and families, which will be announced at the July 10 press conference.

Locarno Kids is made possible thanks to the Festival’s main partner la Mobiliare. The project is also supported by Società Elettrica Sopracenerina (SES), Manawa, Beisheim, Accentus and Volkart Foundations, and by the Locarno Region Culture Foundation.