×

French Director Olivier Assayas Pays Tribute to Kristen Stewart at Deauville

French director Olivier Assayas paid tribute to Kristen Stewart, whom he directed in “Clouds of Sils Maria” and “Personal Shopper,” at the Deauville American Film Festival on Friday evening.

Stewart received a honorary award in Deauville before the French premiere of Benedict Andrews’s “Seberg” in which the actress stars as Jean Seberg, a French New Wave icon who starts supporting the Black Panthers and becomes the target of an agressive counter-intelligence program put in place by the FBI.

The Deauville tribute highlighted Stewart’s eclectic acting career through a montage of clips from her key roles in films, including “Panic Room,” “Into The Wild,” “The Twilight,” “The Runaways,” “On The Road,” “Café Society,” “Clouds of Sils Maria,” “Personal Shopper” and the upcoming “Charlie’s Angels.”

“When I think of filmmaking I think family, I imagine great gaps being bridged; messy, gorgeous, ebbs and flows of thoughts and impulse connecting us,” said Stewart who attended the event along with Yvan Attal, her “Seberg” co-star and on-screen husband (as Romain Gary).

“When I think of filmmaking and the entire mythic process of it from these weird tinkering ideas that start small and spread like water… I speak of this like a crazy person and in an environment like this where movies matter and risk is taken and trust is required I feel so right to sound crazy about it,” said Stewart, who won best supporting actress at the Cesar Awards in 2015 for her performance in “Clouds of Sils Maria,”

Assayas said he admired Kirsten for her freedom. “She never made a conventional choice, she never tried to achieve anything else but preserve her independence, in her life, in her acts and in her art,” said Assayas, who won best director at Cannes with “Personal Shopper.”

“This freedom… is much more difficult to achieve for movie stars who are being placed under the microscope of media, who are being subjected on a daily basis to the unbearable pressure of the ‘Hollywood machine,’ its cynicism, its corny sentimentalism, the brutality of power and money struggles,” said Assayas, who is presenting on closing night in Deauville his latest film “Wasp Network,” a thriller based on the true story of the Cuban Five which stars Penelope Cruz and Edgar Ramirez.

“I’m infinitely grateful of her to carry so courageously these values (of freedom and independence) which are so fragile and precious, and to do so not only for herself but for each and everyone,” said Assayas.

Besides Stewart, the other women honored at this 45th edition of Deauville were Sienna Miller (“American Woman”) and Geena Davis (“This Changes Everything”). Sophie Turner (“Heavy, “Game of Thrones”), meanwhile, received the Young Hollywood Award. Spearheaded by artistic director Bruno Barde, this Deauville edition showcased a record number of films directed by women, notably “Port Authority,” “Bull” and “Share” which are competing.

“Seberg,” repped in international markets by Memento Films International, will be released by Amazon Studios in the U.S. UTA repped U.S. rights.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • SANCTORUM

    Berlin-based Pluto Films Snags Sales Rights to Joshua Gil’s ‘Sanctorum’ (EXCLUSIVE)

    MORELIA, Mexico — Berlin-based Pluto Film Distribution has picked up the international sales rights, with the exception of Mexico, to Joshua Gil’s ‘Sanctorum,” which competes at the 17th Morelia Int’l Film Festival (FICM). Founded by Torsten Frehse, the fledgling world sales and festival distribution company has an eye for arthouse and crossover films as well as features from emerging [...]

  • Crowds Of German Refugees Pictured On

    'Last Days in Vietnam's' Rory Kennedy to Direct AR Content’s Refugee Documentary (EXCLUSIVE)

    Alexander Rodnyansky’s AR Content – in partnership with Kevin Macdonald, an Oscar winner with “One Day in September,” and Rosanne Korenberg – has tapped Academy Award nominated and Emmy winning director Rory Kennedy, best known for “Last Days in Vietnam,” to direct its untitled documentary centering on a little-known refugee crisis immediately preceding World War [...]

  • Global Screen Nabs ‘Amazing Maurice,’ Based

    Global Screen Picks Up ‘The Amazing Maurice,’ Based on Terry Pratchett’s Novel (EXCLUSIVE)

    Global Screen has picked up worldwide distribution rights, excluding North America, the U.K. and German-speaking territories, to the English-language animated feature “The Amazing Maurice,” based on a Terry Pratchett novel. The screenplay has been written by Terry Rossio, Oscar-nominated for “Shrek.” Rossio’s credits also include the animated movie “Aladdin” and the “Pirates of the Caribbean” [...]

  • Yoji Yamada-directed film is to open

    Tokyo Market: Shochiku Launches Horror, Comedy and Mystery Lineup

    Major Japanese studio, Shochiku has the honor of leading off next week’s Tokyo International Film Festival with its “Tora-san, Wish You Were Here.” The film is a revival of a beloved in-house drama franchise, directed by veteran Yoji Yamada, that is set as the event’s opening night gala presentation. Before that, the company has the [...]

  • The Truth

    Singapore Festival to Focus on Asian Excellence for 30th Edition

    For its 30th edition the Singapore International Film Festival has avoided programming novelty and instead focused on assembling excellence – mostly indie titles — from Asia and further afield. The festival, which previously announced local filmmaker Anthony Chen’s second feature “Wet Season” as its opening night gala presentation, announced the balance of its programming on [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content