UPDATE, WRITETHRU: France’s biggest movie awards night has drawn to a close with Custody (Jusqu’à La Garde) crowned Best Picture. Originally screened in Venice and Toronto in 2017, the Xavier Legrand-directed drama is a story of domestic abuse that stars Denis Ménochet and Léa Drucker, the latter won Best Actress tonight. Jacques Audiard’s The Sisters Brothers also scored multiple recognition including Best Director.
While some of tonight’s winners in Paris were expected — during a ceremony that is forever laborious — it was a major shock to see an In Memoriam segment minus two incredibly important figures. Where was Michel Le Grand? And why was Samuel Hadida not remembered in a first segment, but then added later in the telecast? Franchement?
Also this evening, Robert Redford received a long standing ovation for his honorary César, and recalled his days as a young tourist in France who once slept on a pier in Cannes looking up at the Carlton Hotel and wondering, “What are they doing for fun?” Seventeen years later, he was in Cannes as a participant and staying at that same hotel, in a tux, he noted. Wistfully, he said “I realize as I get older time passes faster. When did tomorrow become yesterday?”
Below is a rundown of tonight’s winners.
PREVIOUS: France’s Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinéma is handing out its César Awards tonight in Paris. Nominations for the local equivalent of the Oscars are led by Xavier Legrand’s feature debut Jusqu’à La Garde (Custody) and Gilles Lellouche’s Le Grand Bain (Sink Or Swim) with 10 mentions each. They are followed by Jacques Audiard’s English-language western, The Sisters Brothers, a film from the former Cannes Palme d’Or winner that debuted at Venice, and Pierre Salvadori’s En Liberté! (The Trouble With You).
French box office was essentially flat in 2018, and this year’s awards nominees have not massively traveled. Maybe that’s why producers of this show, which is currently airing live on Canal Plus locally, have taken a page out of the Oscars song book — host Kad Merad just covered Queen’s “We Are The Champions” for his intro.
Kristin Scott Thomas is the President of the ceremony tonight at Paris’ Salle Pleyel, and reminded of the importance of the long history of French cinema, particularly in its welcoming of outsiders. “You can be proud of your productions, and the opening of the industry for people who are not French. You allowed me to become an actress. I am far from being the only one,” she said, before adding, “Even with Brexit I will continue.”
Her former co-starn Robert Redford, will be receiving an honorary award later tonight. In the meantime, follow along for the updated list of winners below.
Jusqu’a La Garde; dir Xavier Legrand
Jacques Audiard, The Sisters Brothers
Léa Drucker, Jusqu’à La Garde
Alex Lutz, Guy
BEST FOREIGN FILM
Shoplifters, dir: Hirokazu Kore-eda
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS
Karin Viard, Les Chatouilles
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR
Philippe Katerine, Le Grand Bain
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Andréa Bescond & Eric Métayer, Les Chatouilles
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
Xavier Legrand, Jusqu’à La Garde
BEST DEBUT FEATURE
Shéhérazade, dir: Jean-Bernard Marlin
Ni Juge, Ni Soumise, dirs: Jean Libon, Yves Hinant
BEST ANIMATED FILM
Dilili A Paris, dir: Michel Oceleot
Brigitte Taillandier, Valérie De Loof, Cyril Holtz, The Sisters Brothers
BEST ORIGINAL SCORE
Vincent Blanchard, Romain Greffe, Guy
Yorgos Lamprinos, Jusqu’à La Garde
BEST NEWCOMER (MALE)
Dylan Robert, Shérérazade
Benoît Debie, The Sisters Brothers
BEST NEWCOMER (FEMALE)
Kenza Fortas, Shérérazade
BEST COSTUME DESIGN
Pierre-Jean Larroque, Mademoiselle De Jonquières
BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN
Michele Bartélémy, The Sisters Brothers
BEST SHORT FILM
Les Petites Mains, dir: Rémi Allier
BEST ANIMATED SHORT
Vilaine Fille, dir: Ayce Kartal
CESAR DU PUBLIC (awarded for box office success)
Les Tuches 3, dir: Olivier Baroux