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Locarno Film Festival to Honor David Linde

The Locarno Film Festival will fete U.S. producer David Linde with its Raimondo Rezzonico prize, given to a producer who epitomizes the indie ethos.

Linde’s long illustrious career dates back to his first major executive position at Miramax Films and Miramax Films International, where he oversaw the acquisition of several internationally renowned pics such as Peter Jackson’s “Heavenly Creatures,” Woody Allen’s “Bullets over Broadway,” and international distribution for Quentin Tarantino’s” Pulp Fiction,” among other titles.

After Miramax, Linde became partner of production company Good Machine, which Universal acquired to become the specialty film studio Focus Features which he ran with co-president James Schamus. During his time at Focus, Linde and Schamus produced a varied slate of top notch indie pictures including Ang Lee’s “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” Alejandro González Iñárritu’s” Biutiful,” “Happiness” by Todd Solondz, Roman Polanski’s “The Pianist” and Sofia Coppola’s “Lost in Translation,” racking up a total of 53 Oscar nominations and scoring 11 Academy Awards.

Linde continued his career as chairman of Universal Pictures, where he oversaw the production and distribution of a wide range of international hits, and the establishment of animation studio Illumination Entertainment. During this period he was also a board member of NBC Universal, presiding over the NBC Universal Diversity Council.

Linde is currently CEO of Participant Media. Their 2016 film slate comprises Peter Berg’s “Deepwater Horizon” (Lionsgate); J.A. Bayona’s “A Monster Calls” (Focus Features); Pablo Larrain’s “Neruda”; Derek Cianfrance’s “The Light Between Oceans” (DreamWorks Pictures/Disney); “Denial” starring Rachel Weisz, Tom Wilkinson, and Timothy Spall; “Middle School,” based on James Patterson’s best-seller series (CBS Films).

In addition to socially conscious narrative films and documentaries, Participant has launched more than a dozen original series for its television network Pivot as well as creating content daily for the digital hub TakePart.

Prior to joining Participant, Linde led Lava Bear Films, a production and financing company he founded with the support of India’s Reliance Entertainment. Lava Bear has backed several Chinese films including Sammo Hung’s Andy Lau-starrer “The Bodyguard.”

David Linde’s eclectic career and take on film are a perfect fit for the spirit of exploration that drives the Locarno Festival,” said fest topper Carlo Chatrian in a statement. “In all his ventures, whether working with the majors or independent production companies, Linde has established himself as having a keen eye for the most original voices in cinema.”

Previous recipients of the Raimondo Rezzonico Award include Jeremy Thomas, Christine Vachon, Paulo Branco, Menahem Golan and, in 2015, Japan’s Office Kitano.

The 69th edition of the Swiss fest dedicated to indie movies and cutting edge cinema will run August 3-13.



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