'Frantz's' Eric and Nicolas Altmayer Win French Academy's Producers' Prize

Courtesy of Sundance

The Monday gala dinner and ceremony kicks off awards week in France, which will culminate Friday night with the Cesar Awards ceremony at Paris’ Salle Pleyel.

Brothers Eric and Nicolas Altmayer took home this year’s Prix Daniel Toscan du Plantier, the French Academy’s honor for best producer of the year.

The Altmayers produced Francois Ozon’s Frantz, which collected 10 Cesar nominations, as well as Chocolat, which earned star Omar Sy a best actor nomination.

The pair were not initially on hand to accept the award, which was picked up by The Fabulous Patars director Sophie Reine. The two then made a late entrance storming the stage fresh from a film premiere across town, much to the delight of guests including Cannes Film Festival director Thierry Fremaux, UniFrance head Jean-Paul Salome and actress Julie Gayet.

The Monday gala dinner and awards ceremony honoring those who work behind the scenes kicks off the awards week, which will culminate Friday night with the Cesar Awards ceremony at Paris’ Salle Pleyel.

The prize was presented by Academy president Alain Terzian and culture minister Audrey Azoulay. The finalists were the producers from the forty films nominated for at least one Cesar Award.

Said Ben Said and Michel Merkt of SBS Productions were nominated for Elle, which has scored star Isabelle Huppert a best actress Oscar nomination. The film also received 11 Cesar noms.

Jean Brehat and Rachid Bouchareb of 3B Productions, the team behind Bruno Dumont’s Slack Bay, which received nine Cesar mentions, were also in the running for the producers' prize.

The honor is often an indicator of who is a frontrunner for the top Cesar Awards.

Pascal Caucheteux took home the producers' prize last year for My Golden Days, which went on to earn Arnaud Desplechin the best director Cesar Award. Sylvie Pialat took home the prize two years in a row for 2014’s Stranger by the Lake and 2015’s Timbuktu. The latter film went on to sweep the Cesar Awards with seven trophies, though it missed out on winning the best foreign-language film Oscar.