Pool via Getty Images
Cinema-“My mission this year is to give people the desire to return to the theater,” declared Antoine de Corne, master of the Cesar Ceremony at Canal + on Friday, February 25, for the tenth time. To do. After two years of crisis and three imprisonments, they are not invited to the party except for the films that motivated the French to return to the theater.
Jumping into the list of France’s biggest hits in theaters in 2021, four of the six most popular movies are comedies.Kaamelott, OSS 117, Les Tuche 4 When Bodies.. Together, they have accumulated admission to about 7.5 million cinemas … Zero Cesar nominations. Since its founding in 1976, if the non-place of the popular-era comedy of French cinema has regularly questioned, on the one hand, the film praised by the French and several 4,500 experts who vote for Académiedes César. The eyes are particularly impressive this year.
Comedy, a genre that is shunned by the elite
But historically, “French films were really built around comedy.” HuffPost Adrian Valgarrier has completed a PhD in film studies from Paul Valéry University in Montpellier. “More than 50% of the production of the first silent films is comedy, for example. And to this day, comedy has always maintained an important place for box office revenue, but this cultural tradition is perfectly reflected in Cesar. not.
If you need to mention the best actress trophy in Valerie Lemercier’s supporting role Visitor Best Actor Award awarded to Jacques Villeret in 1994 Stupid supper In 1999, the fact remains that for almost 50 years, the examples of awards awarded to comedy can be counted with the fingers of both hands. And for sociologists observing the film industry, that’s not surprising.
“Cesar has established itself as an institution that justifies the work, as if it were a’guardian of the French cinema’,” said a teacher study of university film and audiovisual socioeconomics. Chloe de la Porte explains. Of Montpellier. “Movies of the genre (and comedy is one of them) have traditionally been shunned by French intellectuals. Bringing popular comedy to Cesar would be almost against their identity.”
Like the media and festivals, the perspective shared by Adrian Valgarrier, who participates in Cesar’s “Cultural Legitimacy Issues”.If it ’s the third part of the adventureOSS 117 Director Nicolas Bedos had the opportunity to conclude the Cannes Film Festival. Kaamelott, Les Tuche, or Les Bodin’s Was completely destroyed by Intelligentsia The movie, even critics, was despised.
Notorious but not popular
And in the end, Cesar nominations are “a notorious indicator rather than quality.” “Cesar’s voting system is like a list of candidates telling us which films were discussed by experts in the field,” said Chloe de la Porte, who is preparing to publish the book. To do. Reward culture At competitions, festivals and film awards.
Comedy was “never a noble genre” for “dominant institutions” such as the Academy of Film Arts and Technology and the famous Cannes and Venice festivals. First, as with all genres of cinema (and one horror), it is far from the ideal concept of French cinema, Adrien Valgalier’s “mixture of new wave and French quality”. Also, because comedy is related to laughter, “a healthy representation of the human body that can be considered vulgar in our Western society” sketches his colleague. “As soon as the director puts himself in to elicit a physical reaction from the audience, he is almost self-banned in the eyes. Intelligentsia.. “
In 2018, the Academy announced the creation of Cesar Dupublic, which rewards feature films at the top of box office revenue.That year, the award, not the result of voting, but therefore the result of financial success, was awarded to Dany Boon for the comedy. RAID Worn by Alice Pol and Sabine Azema. Three years later, in 2021, the public Cesar gave way to the anniversary Cesar, which was awarded to a wonderful group. “History with a focus on comedy at the center of the debate” undertook the ceremony’s mistress Marina Fois.
It’s not really interesting to researchers who wrote papers on popular French comedies in the 1960s and 1970s and saw the signs of “the patriotism of a popular French movie” 40 years ago. It’s not a “bold” choice. In current production.
This Friday, February 25th, neither the general Caesar nor Caesar’s birthday participated in the program.If Antoine de Corne regrets his absence Kaamelott Among the candidates-“not because I played it, but because Alexander Astier’s approach to the epic film was not recognized by trade as it was,” he blew-. Laughter is rather honored during the awards, interrupting the long night of Canal + viewers. Because comedy definitely has a better place in the cultural hierarchy of television.
See also HuffPost: Antoine de Corne, choosing a reason to save the declining Caesar