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‘Others,’ ‘Harry’ are Cesar faves

Both pics nab noms in nine categories

PARIS — France’s Cesar awards will be dominated this year by two audience favorites: Agnes Jaoui’s “The Taste of Others” and Dominik Moll’s “With a Friend Like Harry.”

At a nominations press conference Monday, it was announced that both pics will compete in nine categories, including film, director, actor, screenplay and supporting actress.

“The Taste of Others,” France’s Oscar contender, is a wryly comic tale of courtship between an uncultured businessman and a theater actress who lives for her art. Pic, Jaoui’s directorial debut, last week picked up three awards at the Lumieres, including best film. “Harry,” Moll’s second film, is a humorous thriller about friendship taken to deadly extremes.

In the foreign-film category, Sam Mendes’ “American Beauty” is up against Stephen Daldry’s “Billy Elliot,” Lars von Trier’s “Dancer in the Dark,” Wong Kar-wai’s “In the Mood for Love” and Edward Yang’s “Yi Yi.” The three other best film noms are Patricia Mazuy’s “Saint-Cyr,” Jean-Pierre Denis’ “Murderous Maids” and Bernard Rapp’s “A Question of Taste.”

Besides Jaoui and Moll, nominees for director kudos include Denis, Mazuy and Mathieu Kassovitz for “The Crimson Rivers.”

The actor noms went to Jean Pierre Bacri (“The Taste of Others”), Charles Berling (“Sentimental Destinies”), Bernard Giraudeau (“A Question of Taste”), Pascal Greggory (“Confusion of Genders”) and Sergi Lopez (“With a Friend Like Harry”)

Actress noms went to Emmanuelle Beart (“Sentimental Destinies”), Juliette Binoche (“The Widow of St. Pierre”), Dominique Blanc (“Stand By”), Isabelle Huppert (“Saint-Cyr”) and Muriel Robin (“Marie-Line”).

Results will be announced at a Feb. 24 ceremony.

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