MADRID — Quentin Tarantino will receive the 5th Lumiere Award at France’s 2013 Lumiere-Grand Lyon Festival, a unique film event held in the city of Lyon, whose program is made up almost entirely of theatrical screenings of movie re-runs, restorations and re-issues.
Setting the bar high, prior Lumiere Award recipients since the Lumiere Festival launched in 2009 were Clint Eastwood, Milos Forman, Gerard Depardieu and Ken Loach.
A highly popular figure in France, where “Django Unchained” has grossed $37.3 million at French theaters, just shy of current 2013 chart topper “Iron Man 3,” Tarantino will receive his award on Oct. 18 at Lyon’s Convention Center Amphitheater, in all probability before a full-capacity 3,000 crowd.
A Lumiere Festival press release noted Thursday that Tarantino will receive the 2013 Lumiere Award “for his entire film career, for his radiant passion for the cinema, for the tributes paid even within his films to the whole mythology of cinema (filmmakers, actresses, actors, musicians, etc…), and for the way he often exclaims, ‘Vive Le Cinema!’”
Tarantino is just 50. “This is not a lifetime award, it’s about where Quentin Tarantino is now, how he is such a great ambassador for a love of cinema,” said Fremaux, also the Cannes Festival topper, whose Lumiere Institute in his native Lyon will celebrate its 30th anniversary at the Lumiere Festival remaking the first film shown before a dedicated paying film public, 1895’s “La sortie des usines Lumiere,” using present-day filmmakers as actors.
Legendary Swedish cineaste Ingmar Bergman (“The Seventh Seal”), U.S. director Hal Ashby (“Harold and Maude,” “Being There”) and French filmmaker Henri Verneuil (“Guns for San Sebastian”) will also be honored at the 5th fest edition that will host what looks like the world’s first Classic Films Market.
Grover Crisp, who heads up restoration of movies in Sony Pictures Columbia catalog, will receive a tribute.
Backed by France’s CNC film board and running Oct. 16-18, Lyon’s Classic Films Market will play off the burgeoning classic films industry, Fremaux said, positioning itself as a meeting place and mini-mart for its players. Some companies have already enquired about taking a stand.
Backed by European film-TV group Studiocanal, which receives a tribute at the Lumiere Festival for its restoration program, the Ingmar Bergman retro will include restored prints of films across his career.
“What we are fighting for is for spectators to go back to cinema theaters to see classic films as if they were watching live shows,” Fremaux said.
The Hal Ashby retrospective pays tribute to “a director who is pretty well forgotten in Europe but has made great films,” he added.
Armenia-born Verneuil helmed Charles Bronson-starrer “Guns for San Sebastian” before settling permanently in France from 1969, where he directed Jean Gabin, Yves Montand, Alain Delon and Lino Ventura in “The Sicilian Clan.”
Further tributes will go to prolific filmmaker Lino Brocka, whose films — “Insiang,” “Jaguar, “This Is My Country” — helped take Philippine filmmaking onto the world stage; Charles-Marie Vanel, who enjoyed a 77-year acting career, toplining Henri-Georges Clouzot’s “The Wages of Fear,” and Alfred Hitchcock’s “To Catch a Thief”; actress-turned-director Christine Pascal, a thesp in four films by Bertrand Tavernier, such as “Let Joy Reign Supreme,” who also enjoyed a helming career which included the Louis Delluc Prize winner “And the Little Prince Said.”
The 5th Lumiere Festival will continue its section, A Permanent History of Women Filmmakers, initiated in 2012, focusing for its first edition on French impressionist director Germaine Dulac, director of 1928’s “The Seashell and the Clergyman.”
Further sections at Lumiere this year are Mexico 1950s!, a presentation of films from the golden age of Mexican cinema; and The Art of Noir Part 2, a panorama of film noir rarities.
The festival will also pay homage to the Cinematheque Francaise, anticipating the centenary of co-founder Henri Langlois in 2014.
Special guests include James B. Harris, producer of Stanley Kubrick’s first films, such as “Paths of Glory,” and director of James Woods-starrer “Cop,” who will present 1973’s “Sleeping Beauty.”