Francois Ozon, Michael Winterbottom Win Cologne Conference Honors
COLOGNE, Germany - Acclaimed European directors Francois Ozon and MIchael Winterbottom and veteran German producer Karl Baumgartner (Le Havre, Underground) were the big winners Friday night at the closing ceremonies for the 22nd Cologne Conference.
The festival cum industry confab honors excellence in European television and film with a week-long showcase of the latest big and small screen productions and a series of workshops and one-on-ones with the continent's top talent.
Ozon, fresh from San Sebastian, where his intellectual mystery thriller In The House took the Golden Shell for best film, was honored with the Film Award Cologne, a lifetime achievement prize presented by the German city. Previous winners include Paul Haggis, the Dardenne Brothers, Tarsem Singh and David Lynch.
Winterbottom, whose latest, Trishna screened at the Cologne Conference, won the TV Spielfilm Prize, presented by Germany's leading television listings magazine. Trishnais an adaptation of Thomas Hardy's Victorian classic Tess of the d'Urbervilles, set in modern-day India. Initially made for British TV it is being sold internationally as a feature film by sales group Bankside Films.
Karl Baumgartner received the 2012 Hollywood Reporter Award, presented to a groundbreaking professional the film and television business whose work "crosses borders and bridges the industries in Europe and The United States."
As the co-founder of German production company Pandora, Baumgartner has been a pioneer in creating the pan-national co-productions widely used as a model for financing European and U.S. art house films. Pandora's slate includes such cross-over success stories as Whale Rider, Mostly Martha and Monsoon Wedding. More recently, Pandora co-produced Leos Carax's Cannes Festival shocker Holy Motors and Jim Jarmusch's upcoming vampire movie, Only Lovers Left Alive, which stars Tilda Swinton, Tom Hiddleston and Mia Wasikowska.