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Robin Campillo’s 120 BPM (Beats Per Minute) won this year’s Prix Daniel Toscan du Plantier prize, the French Academy’s top honor for producer of the year.
Marie-Ange Luciani and Hugues Charbonneau produced the AIDS activist drama, which also took the Grand Prize in Cannes, under their Films de Pierre banner.
Luciani acknowledged director Campillo, who also wrote the screenplay, and thanked him for sharing this “incredible thing that came out of [his] head.”
The award was presented by Academy president Alain Terzian.
The gala dinner was held at Paris’ George V with the luminaries of French cinema attending, including Cannes Film Festival head Thierry Fremaux, Culture Minister Francoise Nyssen and CanalPlus CEO Maxime Sadaa.
Nyssen gave an impassioned speech in which she called for gender equality and the end of discrimination and harassment against women in the industry.
Producers from any film eligible for best picture at the Cesar Awards are in the running for the award. This year’s nominees were 120 BPM, produced by Luciani and Hugues Charbonneau; See You Up There, produced by Catherine Bozorgan; Barbara, produced by Patrick Godeau; Le Brio, produced by Dimitri Rassam and Bejamin Elaouf; Patients, produced by brothers Eric and Nicolas Altmayer and Jean Rachid; Bloody Milk, produced by Stephani Bermann and Alexis Dulguerian; and C’est la Vie!, produced by Nicolas Duval Adassovsky, Yann Zenou and Laurent Zeitoun.
The Altmayer brothers took home the award last year for Francois Ozon’s Frantz, which garnered 10 nominations but left the awards show empty-handed. In previous years, the Plantier prize has been an early indicator of big wins on Cesar night, with Pascal Caucheteux taking the award in 2016 for My Golden Days, which went on to win the best director prize for Arnaud Desplechin and Sylvie Pialat in 2015 for Timbuktu, which swept the awards with seven wins and was nominated for a best foreign-language film Oscar.
The Cesar Awards will be held Friday at Paris’ Salle Pleyel.
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