Having idolized football players as a girl, she hadn’t seen a single film till the age of 15, and it was a chance meeting that led her towards acting. The result was nonetheless a lifelong love for the art of cinema.
At Art Film Fest this afternoon, distinguished French actress Emmanuelle Béart accepted the Actor’s Mission Award, personally placing a brass plaque bearing her own name in Trenčianske Teplice’s Festival Park.
“This is even better than my wedding,” joked Béart when presented with a bouquet, later adding that she considers her one true masterpiece to be her three children.
After Catherine Deneuve and Isabelle Huppert, Emmanuelle Béart is the third actress to win Berlin’s Silver Bear, a European Film Award and the Art Film Fest’s Actor’s Mission Award.
Art Film Fest had the honour of hosting her first visit to Slovakia. “I didn’t know much about your festival. But as soon as I arrived, I could sense that this is a place with a soul. I’m touched that I have the luck to be here,” said Béart, adding that she would gladly return to Art Film Fest as a juror or to introduce her latest film, for example.
Béart’s acting career began by sheer chance. At a discotheque in Australia, the fifteen-year-old beauty was approached by director Robert Altman, who asked her if she wanted to be an actress. She answered with a question of her own, asking if it could make her rich. Though his positive answer piqued her interest in the trade, she’s no longer in it for the money, but for love. “My love of film is like a big, beautiful love story,” said Béart upon accepting her award.
“I fell in love with my line of work through collaborating with extraordinary directors and other incredible personalities. These people made me who I am, not only as an actress, but as a woman," said the performer at the subsequent press conference. Béart has collaborated with directors such as Claude Berri, Jacques Rivette, Édouard Molinaro, François Ozon and Ettore Scola. “I have the luck to have passed thirty and still be on the map. Sometimes I tell myself I’ve had enough, I’m going to raise goats, grow carrots and potatoes. But that’s not going to happen. My work isn’t finished yet. I’m still curious, I still love discovering new things,” she added.
As a young woman she charmed photographer David Hamilton with her natural beauty and esprit, landing a role in his feature film debut First Desires. Soon after, Béart was nominated for France’s César Awards for her performances in Forbidden Love and Love on the Quiet. And while still in her twenties, she finally won a César for her portrayal of the titular villager in the film adaptation of Manon of the Spring, a novel by renowned author Marcel Pagnol. To date she has earned a total of seven nominations for the award.
In Béart’s honour, Art Film Fest is screening her well-known film 8 Women from world-renowned director François Ozon. The picture is set in the 1950s in the snow-covered French countryside. An entire family gets together for the holidays, but the celebration is cut short by the murder of their beloved patriarch. The culprit can only be one of the eight women closest to him. The film won the Silver Berlin Bear for Outstanding Artistic Achievement at the 2002 Berlinale and featured Catherine Deneuve and Isabelle Huppert alongside Emmanuelle Béart, a collaboration of which she speaks highly. “Perhaps Ozon was worried about eight women gathering in a single place, but I think it’s easier to bring eight women together than eight men,” she says.
In 1996 Béart performed with Tom Cruise, Jean Reno and Jon Voight in De Palma’s Mission: Impossible. But when it came to her favourite work in her filmography, she couldn’t come up with an answer. “That’s like asking a mother to pick a favourite child,“ she said. In addition to film, Béart’s passion is performing onstage.
Art Film Fest 2012 – the 20th International Trenčianske Teplice/Trenčín Film Festival
The festival is held under the auspices of Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic Robert Fico.
Organizers: ART FILM, n.o., FORZA, a.s.
Co-organizers: The Town of Trenčianske Teplice, the City of Trenčín, Kúpele Trenčianske Teplice
Financial Support: The Audiovisual Fund
General Sponsors: KOOPERATIVA poisťovňa Vienna Insurance Group, Privatbanka
Main Sponsors: Omnia Holding SE, Slovnaft, AquaCity Poprad, Hydrotour Travel Agency
Official Transport Provider: Lancia
Logistics Sponsor: DHL
Student cinepasses for only €5 provided by Prvá stavebná sporiteľňa, a. s.
Sponsors: TIPOS, Slovak Telekom, Penzión Baske, Cinemax, Forza CZ, Omnia Motors, Omnia 2000, DOMO Omnia, Omnia KLF
Official Suppliers: značka Moët, Hotel Pax – the festival spa hotel, NAY Elektrodom, Esterle&Esterle, MF team, LampART, Stredná odborná škola polygrafická
Main Media Sponsors: Slovak Radio and Television, Pravda, Rádio FM, zoznam.sk
Media Sponsors: TA 3, TV JOJ, Film Europe Channel, Central Europe Television, Rádio Europa 2, .týždeň, Eurotelevízia, Pardon, OK!, Kinečko, Kam do mesta, Focus, GONG SK, Boomerang Media, SITA News Agency, Pay-Per Vision Media, euroAWK, Bittner-print, moviemania.sk, filmneweurope.com
Partners: The Trenčín Self-governing Region, the European Commission Representation in Slovakia, the Slovak Film Institute, the Embassy of Israel in Slovakia, CzechTourism, Celtima SK, Hotel Flóra, KURSALON, versity, the Bratislava Culture and Information Centre, Hollywood Classic Entertainment, Niagara, Magic Box Slovakia, the Italian Cultural Institute in Bratislava, Istituto Luce – Cinecittá, Character – Film Development Association