Home Movie Awards Jacques Tati-Inspired Animated Feature Wins Canadian Oscar + French César’s Low-Budget Best Film Surprise

Jacques Tati-Inspired Animated Feature Wins Canadian Oscar + French César’s Low-Budget Best Film Surprise

Animated feature The Triplets of Belleville was the Genie Awards’ top pick: One more example of Quebec’s vibrant film industry, which fully dominated this year’s “Canadian Oscars.”
  • Inspired by Jacques Tati classics like Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday and Mon Oncle, Sylvain Chomet’s French-Canadian animated feature The Triplets of Belleville topped the most important category at this year’s Genie Awards: Best Film. Curiously, that was its only win.
  • In France, Prix César voters opted for their own Best Film surprise: Abdellatif Kechiche’s Games of Love and Chance. Featuring a cast of unknowns, the low-budget, Paris banlieue-set drama beat bigger and internationally better-known productions like A Very Long Engagement and The Chorus.

Jacques Tati-inspired animated feature The Triplets of Belleville tops Canadian Oscars’ Best Film category – its only win

Inspired by Jacques Tati’s nearly dialogue-free (live-action) classics, Sylvain Chomet’s French-Canadian co-production The Triplets of Belleville / Les Triplettes de Belleville was the winner of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television’s 2005 Best Film Genie Award, announced at the Andrea Martin-hosted ceremony held on March 1 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. (See further below the full list of this year’s Genie winners.)

Curiously, The Triplets of Belleville – about the attempts of a loving grandmother and her tenacious dog to rescue her grandson, kidnapped during the Tour de France – won the Best Film Genie and nothing else. But then again, Chomet’s adventure/comedy mix had been nominated in only one other category: Best Original Score (Benoît Charest).

Last year, The Triplets of Belleville was shortlisted for the Best Animated Feature Oscar, but lost to Andrew Stanton’s Finding Nemo. This year, its Best Film Genie Award competitors were the following:

  • István Szabo’s period comedy Being Julia, starring Annette Bening as a temperamental London actress reminiscent of Bette Davis in All About Eve.
  • Bittersweet Memories / Ma vie en cinémascope, starring Best Actress winner Pascale Bussières as troubled Quebec singer Alys Robi.
  • Best Director winner Francis Leclerc’s Looking for Alexander / Mémoires affectives, starring Best Actor Roy Dupuis as a man who, after waking from a coma, begins suffering from disturbing, violent flashes of memory. Looking for Alexander also earned Leclerc and Marcel Beaulieu the Best Original Screenplay statuette.
  • David “Sudz” Sutherland’s Love, Sex and Eating the Bones, in which a man (Hill Harper) discovers much to his dismay that his love of pornography has made him afraid of actual sexual contact.

Jennifer Jason Leigh among Genie winners

In the Genie Awards’ supporting categories, the winners were U.S. actress Jennifer Jason Leigh for Don McKellar’s show business-centered comedy Childstar and Jean Lapointe for Érik Canuel’s real-life-based crime drama The Last Tunnel / Le Dernier Tunnel.

The Best Adapted Screenplay award went to Luc Dionne and Sylvain Guy for another real-life-based crime drama: Pierre Houle’s Machine Gun Molly / Monica la mitraille, based on the life of 1960s Montreal bank robber and folk heroine of sorts Monica Proietti (played, as Monica Sparvieri, by Best Actress nominee Céline Bonnier – who, as it happens, is also featured in The Last Tunnel).

Starring Charlize Theron, Penélope Cruz, Stuart Townsend, and Thomas Kretschmann as four people whose lives are torn asunder in 1930s and 1940s Europe, screenwriter-director John Duigan’s Head in the Clouds topped more categories – four – than any other movie at this year’s ceremony: Best Cinematography, Editing, Costume Design, and Original Score.

Mark Achbar and Jennifer Abbott’s The Corporation, about the sociopolitical conceptualization and purpose of (mostly U.S. and Canadian) businesses, was the Best Documentary Feature, while the Genie Awards’ box office prize, the Golden Reel Award, went to Alexander Witt’s Resident Evil: Apocalypse, the latest installment in the critically derided but quite popular franchise starring Machine Gun Milla Jovovich.

Of note, apart from Childstar, every 2005 Genie Award in the acting, directing, writing, and Best Film categories went to French-Canadian releases. See below the full list of this year’s Genie winners and a partial list of nominees.

Genie Awards

Being Julia.
Love, Sex and Eating the Bones.
Bittersweet Memories.
Looking for Alexander.
* The Triplets of Belleville.

Denise Filiatrault - Bittersweet Memories.
Pierre Houle - Machine Gun Molly.
Bronwen Hughes - Stander.
* Francis Leclerc - Looking for Alexander.
David “Sudz” Sutherland - Love, Sex and Eating the Bones.

Michel Côté - The Last Tunnel.
* Roy Dupuis - Looking for Alexander.
David La Haye - Battle of the Brave / Nouvelle-France.
Ian McKellen - Emile.
Nick Stahl - Twist.

Isabelle Blais - Love and Magnets / Les Aimants.
Céline Bonnier - Machine Gun Molly.
* Pascale Bussières - Bittersweet Memories.
Emily Hampshire - Blood.
Jacinthe Lagüe - The Five of Us / Elles étaient cinq.

Supporting Actress
Juliette Gosselin - Battle of the Brave.
* Jennifer Jason Leigh - Childstar.
Sylvie Moreau - Love and Magnets.
Ellen Page - Wilby Wonderful.
Susana Salazar - A Silent Love.

Supporting Actor
Gary Farmer - Twist.
Brendan Fehr - Sugar.
Bruce Greenwood - Being Julia.
* Jean Lapointe - The Last Tunnel.
Kyle Maclachlan - Touch of Pink.

Original Screenplay
Denise Filiatrault - Bittersweet Memories.
Federico Hidalgo & Paulina Robles - A Silent Love.
* Francis Leclerc & Marcel Beaulieu - Looking for Alexander.
Don McKellar & Michael Goldbach - Childstar.
David “Sudz” Sutherland - Love, Sex and Eating the Bones.

Adapted Screenplay
Joël Champetier & Daniel Roby - White Skin / La Peau Blanche.
Jerry Ciccoritti - Blood.
* Luc Dionne & Sylvain Guy - Machine Gun Molly.
Todd Klinck, Jaie Laplante & John Palmer - Sugar.
Jacob Tierney - Twist.

Louis de Ernsted - Battle of the Brave.
Bernard Couture - The Last Tunnel.
Pierre Mignot - Bittersweet Memories.
* Paul Sarossy - Head in the Clouds.
André Turpin - Childstar.

Jean-François Bergeron - The Last Tunnel.
Richard Comeau - The Five of Us.
* Dominique Fortin - Head in the Clouds.
Reginald Harkema - Childstar.
Yvann Thibodeau - Bittersweet Memories.

Original Score
Benoît Charest - The Triplets of Belleville.
Michel Corriveau - The Last Tunnel.
Pierre Duchesne - Looking for Alexander.
* Terry Frewer - Head in the Clouds.
Charles Papasoff - So the Moon Rises / La Lune Viendra d’Elle-Même.

Original Song: “Pantaloon in Black,” Twist - Ron Proulx & Jacob Tierney.

Production Design: Jean-Baptiste Tard - Battle of the Brave.

Costume Design: Mario Davignon - Head in the Clouds.

Documentary: The Corporation, dir.: Mark Achbar & Jennifer Abbott.

Overall Sound: The Last Tunnel.

Sound Editing: Resident Evil: Apocalypse.

Live Action Short: Capacité 11 personnes, dir.: Gaël d’Ynglemare.

Animated Short: Ryan, dir.: Chris Landreth.

Claude Jutra Award: Daniel Roby - White Skin.

Golden Reel Award: Resident Evil: Apocalypse.

Games of Love and Chance with Osman Elkharraz. Featuring a cast of unknowns, Abdellatif Kechiche’s low-budget Paris banlieue-set drama was the 2005 Prix César’s surprise Best Film winner.

César Awards’ Best Film trophy unexpectedly goes to low-budget drama

From Canada to France: The winners of the French Academy of Cinema Arts and Techniques’ 2005 Prix César were announced at a ceremony held on Feb. 26 at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris. Gad Elmaleh hosted the proceedings while four-time Best Actress César winner Isabelle Adjani acted as President of the Ceremony.

Surprisingly, Abdellatif Kechiche’s low-budget drama Games of Love and Chance / L’Esquive, was named Best Film, beating more high-profile efforts like Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s A Very Long Engagement and Christophe Barratier’s Best Foreign Language Film Oscar nominee The Chorus. In addition, Games of Love and Chance topped the Best Screenplay (Abdellatif Kechiche and Ghalia Lacroix) and Most Promising Actress (Sara Forestier) categories.

Set at a Parisian housing project filled with immigrants and their children, Kechiche’s drama centers on a withdrawn teenager (Osman Elkharraz) with artistic aspirations.

Big-budget international hit A Very Long Engagement wins most awards

In absolute numbers, the World War I-focused A Very Long Engagement / Un long dimanche de fiançailles was the 2005 Prix César’s big winner, with a total of five awards: Best Supporting Actress (Marion Cotillard), Most Promising Actor (Gaspard Ulliel), Best Cinematography (Bruno Delbonnel), Best Production Design (Aline Bonetto), and Best Costume Design (Madeline Fontaine).

Yolande Moreau was a double winner: as Best Actress for and as the co-director – with Gilles Porte – of Best First Film When the Sea Rises / Quand la mer monte….

Below is the full list of this year’s Prix César winners and a partial list of nominees.

Further down is the list of Étoiles d’Or winners, announced by a group of French film journalists. Arnaud Desplechin’s Kings and Queen / Rois et reine topped four categories: Best Film, Best Director, Best Actress (Emmanuelle Devos), and Best Actor (César winner Mathieu Amalric).

Prix César

36th Precinct / 36 Quai des Orfèvres.
The Chorus / Les Choristes.
* Games of Love and Chance.
Kings and Queen.
A Very Long Engagement.

European Union Film
* A Fond Kiss (U.K.).
Bad Education / La Mala educación (Spain).
Mondovino (U.S.).
Saraband (Sweden).
Life Is a Miracle / Zivot je cudo (Serbia and Montenegro / France).

Foreign Film
21 Grams (U.S.).
The Motorcycle Diaries / Diarios de motocicleta (U.S. / Argentina / Brazil).
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (U.S.).
Fahrenheit 9/11 (U.S.).
* Lost in Translation (U.S. / Japan).

First Film
A Common Thread / Brodeuses, dir.: Éléonore Faucher.
The Chorus.
Podium, dir.: Yann Moix.
* When the Sea Rises.
Work Hard, Play Hard / Violence des échanges en milieu tempéré, dir.: Jean-Marc Moutout.

Christophe Barratier, The Chorus.
Arnaud Desplechin, Kings and Queen.
Jean-Pierre Jeunet, A Very Long Engagement.
* Abdellatif Kechiche, Games of Love and Chance.
Olivier Marchal, 36th Precinct.

* Mathieu Amalric, Kings and Queen.
Daniel Auteuil, 36th Precinct.
Gérard Jugnot, The Chorus.
Benoît Poelvoorde, Podium.
Philippe Torreton, The Light / L’Équipier.

Maggie Cheung, Clean.
Emmanuelle Devos, Kings and Queen.
* Yolande Moreau, When the Sea Rises.
Audrey Tautou, A Very Long Engagement.
Karin Viard, The Role of Her Life / Le Rôle de sa vie.

Supporting Actor
François Berléand, The Chorus.
* Clovis Cornillac, The Story of My Life / Mensonges et trahisons et plus si affinités.
André Dussollier, 36th Precinct.
Maurice Garrel, Kings and Queen.
Jean-Paul Rouve, Podium.

Supporting Actress
Ariane Ascaride, A Common Thread.
* Marion Cotillard, A Very Long Engagement.
Mylène Demongeot, 36th Precinct.
Julie Depardieu, Podium.
Émilie Dequenne, The Light.

Most Promising Actor
Osman Elkharraz, Games of Love and Chance.
Damien Jouillerot, Bad Spelling / Les Fautes d’orthographe.
Jérémie Rénier, Work Hard, Play Hard.
* Gaspard Ulliel, A Very Long Engagement.
Malik Zidi, Changing Times / Les Temps qui changent.

Most Promising Actress
Marilou Berry, Look at Me / Comme une image.
* Sara Forestier, Games of Love and Chance.
Lola Naymark, A Common Thread.
Sabrina Ouazani, Games of Love and Chance.
Magalie Woch, Kings and Queen.

Screenplay, Original or Adaptation
36th Precinct, Olivier Marchal, Frank Mancuso & Julien Rappeneau.
Look at Me, Agnès Jaoui & Jean-Pierre Bacri.
* Games of Love and Chance, Abdellatif Kechiche & Ghalia Lacroix.
Kings and Queen, Arnaud Desplechin & Roger Bohbot.
A Very Long Engagement, Jean-Pierre Jeunet & Guillaume Laurant.

Clean, Eric Gautier.
Two Brothers / Deux frères, Jean-Marie Dreujou.
* A Very Long Engagement, Bruno Delbonnel.

36th Precinct, Hugues Darmois (as Hachdé).
* Two Brothers, Noëlle Boisson.
A Very Long Engagement, Hervé Schneid.

* The Chorus, Bruno Coulais.
Exiles / Exils, Tony Gatlif & Delphine Mantoulet.
A Very Long Engagement, Angelo Badalamenti.
The Light, Nicola Piovani.

Production Design
The Chorus, François Chauvaud.
Immortal / Immortel (ad vitam), Jean-Pierre Fouillet.
* A Very Long Engagement, Aline Bonetto.

Costume Design
Arsène Lupin, Pierre-Jean Larroque.
Podium, Catherine Bouchard.
* A Very Long Engagement, Madeline Fontaine.

36th Precinct.
* The Chorus.
A Very Long Engagement.

Short Film
* Cousines, dir.: Lyes Salem.
Hymne à la gazelle, dir.: Stéphanie Duvivier.
La Méthode Bourchnikov, dir.: Grégoire Sivan.
Les Parallèles, dir.: Nicolas Saada.

Honorary Awards
Jacques Dutronc.
Will Smith.

Étoiles d’Or

Film: Kings and Queen.

Director: Arnaud Desplechin, Kings and Queen.

Actress: Emmanuelle Devos, Kings and Queen.

Actor: Mathieu Amalric, Kings and Queen.

Screenplay: Agnès Jaoui & Jean-Pierre Bacri, Look at Me.

First Film: A Common Thread.

Male Newcomer: Julien Boisselier, Clara et moi.

Female Newcomer (tie): Marilou Berry, Look at Me; Sara Forestier, Games of Love and Chance.

Score: Bruno Coulais, The Chorus & Genesis.

Recommended articles

Check out:

Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television website.

French Academy website.

The Triplets of Belleville image: Sony Pictures Classics.

Osman Elkharraz Games of Love and Chance image: New Yorker Films.

“Jacques Tati-Inspired Animated Feature Wins Canadian Oscar + French César’s Low-Budget Best Film Surprise” last updated in February 2020.

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