Following their support of well-known and hand-picked film festivals in Beijing, New York, Zurich, London and Dubai, IWC Schaffhausen partnered this year for the first time with the Festival du Film Francophone d’Angoulême, now in its 8th edition. The French-language film festival takes place in this city in the southwest of France during the last week of August.
What does the very manly Swiss luxury watch manufacturer have in common with French movies, or movies generally? For IWC CEO Georges Kern there is a shared passion and precision work of teams with great talents, creating products that fascinate, create magic and tell a story. And, continued CEO Kern, “French-speaking cinema has an excellent reputation that goes well beyond linguistic borders and is well-known for its high artistic quality.”
Founded by French producers Marie-France Brière and Dominique Besnehard in 2008, the “Festival du Film Francophone d’Angoulême” has gained rapid recognition among cinephiles.
This year, the jury, presided by French actor Jean-Hugues Anglade, viewed more than 80 French – speaking movies over a five-day period. The movies came from Belgium, Canada, France, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Africa and the Middle East.
The awards, called “Valois” – France was ruled by the Valois royal family from 1328 to 1589 – were presented during the evening of August 30 in the closing ceremony at the beautiful Château de Maumont and surrounding grounds dating from the 16th century.
The much-coveted awards were presented in 8 categories. The “Valois d’or” or “golden Valois” want to the Moroccan-French movie “Much Love” by Nabil Ayouch, while Best Director award went to Frenchman Emmanuel Finkiel for his film “Je ne suis pas un salaud” (I am not a bastard). The talented Finkiel was doubly awarded, as he received an IWC Portofino Hand-Wound Eight Days watch from IWC Schaffhausen for his victory.
The awards ceremony was followed by an exclusive gala dinner for a 100 very happy few that included French actors Vincent Lindon and Christopher Lambert, and actresses Louise Bourgoin and Elsa Zylberstein. All were treated to a private concert given by France’s very own rock star Louis Bertignac, guitarist and vocalist of the rock band Téléphone that took French music into the 20th century during the 1980s.