French film industry celebrates 45th César Awards

French film industry celebrates 45th César Awards

The French equivalent of the Academy Awards, the César Awards, was celebrated in style on 28th February, at a glittering and star-studded ceremony held in Paris.

The ceremony took place at the Théâtre du Châtelet. 2020 is the award’s 45th year and since the first Nuit des César ceremony was held in 1976, the awards have been regarded as the highest honour in the French film industry.

Nominations are considered by film-making professionals and industry experts from across a range of categories, including Best Film and Best Director, Best Costume Design and Best Cinematography, with a smattering of special recognition awards.

Around 4,000 professionals from every field of film-making take part in two postal ballots to select, firstly the nominees, and then the eventual winners. The inaugural ceremony saw just 13 awards handed out, whereas the 2020 ceremony saw 22 winners walking away with a coveted statuette.

The statuette is a striking piece designed by sculpture César Baldaccini, after whom the award is named. Baldacinni was born in Marseilles to Italian parents and attended the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He made his name welding scrap metal pieces into animals, birds and insects.

His reputation as France’s leading sculptor, led to him being commissioned to design a piece for the Académie des Arts et Techniques du Cinema by Georges Cravenne, the creator of the César Awards. The engraved awards are in typical Baldacinni style, being bronze statuettes resembling pieces of metal welded and fixed together in a random pattern.

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