The 2014 Deauville American Film Festival

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Summer is running out of steam, but Deauville will soon be lighting up with intense activity. This festival is the fruit of a passionate labor, that of two men: journalist André Halimi and advertiser Lionel Chouchan. Soon joined by Lucien Barrière, owner of the Normandy Hotel, the three had a burning desire to organize an event that would celebrate the new Hollywood. In September 1975, the first American film festival was inaugurated, but not a single American was actually present. Two years later, Chouchan hit his mark; by introducing the concept of “homages”, he managed to reach out to American film actors. That same year, he received Gregory Peck and Harrison Ford with much pomp and circumstance. Ever since, a procession of stars has descended on Deauville: De Niro, Clint Eastwood, Sharon Stone, Kirk Doublag, but also Liz Taylor, Al Pacino, George Clooney, and even Julia Roberts. When it became competitive in 1995, the festival transformed itself while Deauville became inextricable with cinema, notably, cinema by one Claude Lelouch. French cinema owes the most flamboyant of its successes to this beach, and a day in September 1965. After the young filmmaker had to endure the failure of a film, he headed for Deauville where, once night fell, he collapsed from exhaustion in his car. Awoken by the daylight, he saw a woman on the beach, walking with a child and a dog. So he started to imagine what this woman could be doing on the beach, with her child and her dog, at this early hour. From there he wrote “Un homme et une femme”, a film that would definitively link Deauville’s atmosphere and decor with the 7th art.

For close to forty years, the Festival has made itself a place for discovery and recognition of American directors, all alongside a convivial ambiance with no boundaries to the public. It’s the only festival in the world that offers 24/7 screenings for 10 days straight; it also incarnates the special bonds that have been forged between fashion and cinema through the decades, with a reciprocal fascination that’s become a one-way street: glamour. In addition to putting its savoir-faire to use by creating all the trophy awards, Cartier is celebrating its fiery love affair with the 7th art once more by immortalizing its partnership with the festival with a new prize: the Prix de la Révélation Cartier.

The festival’s jury will be presided by Costa-Gavras, who will be accompanied by Emanuelle Béart, Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Claude Lelouch, Pierre Lescure, Vincent Lindon, André Téchiné et Marie-Claude Pietragalla.

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