Lifetime achievement Lola for Eichinger
At the Lola Awards on April 23 in BerlinCANNES -- Uber-producer and screenwriter Bernd Eichinger, the force behind such international successes as "Downfall," "Perfume" and the "Resident Evil" franchise is finally getting some respect. The German Film Academy, which has often snubbed Eichinger productions in the past, will this year honor him with its lifetime achievement award.
Eichinger is easily the most powerful and successful producer in Germany. In addition to his long list of international productions -- which include "The Neverending Story" (1984) "The Name of the Rose," (1986) and "The House of the Spirits" (1993), he has produced many of the local-language boxoffice champs of the past three decades, including comedy smash "Maybe...Maybe Not" (1994), the animated "Werner" franchise and terrorist biopic "The Baader Meinhof Complex" (2008).
Eichinger's specialty is the literary adaptation. From "Christiane F." (1981), the harrowing tale of a Berlin junkie based on an anonymous autobiography, to "Perfume," adapted from the Patrick Suskind bestseller, Eichinger has transformed books to film and boxoffice with a success rate almost unheard of in the industry. In one of his more famous deals, Eichinger secured the rights to "The Fantastic Four" and "The Silver Surfer" decades before the comic books would be turned into global tentpoles.
As a producer and screenwriter, Eichinger is no stranger to international accolades. "Baader Meinhof" received an Academy Award nomination for best foreign language film, and Eichinger-produced "Downfall" won the Oscar in 2004. His productions have picked up Emmy, Bafta and Saturn Award nominations and a raft of Bavarian Film Awards. But Germany's top honor, the German Film Awards or Lolas, have often eluded him. Only once has he won a gold Lola -- for outstanding individual achievement on "The House of the Spirits."
At the Lola Awards on April 23 in Berlin, the German Academy will try and make up for that and present the country's number one producer with its top prize.