Acclaimed actor and producer Cate Blanchett has presented the 5th Filmmaker Award. The award ceremony took place during the 15th Zurich Film Festival at an exclusive IWC Schaffhausen private dinner at rooftop restaurant Haute. The award, which is worth CHF 100,000, supports Swiss film projects that are in the production or post-production stage. A few days earlier, the Zurich Film Festival was officially opened with “Die Stimme des Regenwaldes” by Niklaus Hilber, a previous winner of the Filmmaker Award.
Few individuals in the film industry possess the appeal of Cate Blanchett: Since the 1990s, the Australian actor, who is also an IWC brand ambassador has appeared in dozens of feature films and TV series. In 2014, she won Best Actress at the Academy Awards for her leading role in “Blue Jasmine”, having already won Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Katharine Hepburn in “The Aviator” in 2004. Blanchett is not only omnipresent on the silver screen; she also regularly appears on stage and is involved in various projects as a producer or artistic director. She also works tirelessly with charitable organisations and other partners to improve society or the environment. As a Goodwill Ambassador for the UNHCR, she is focused on the issue of forced displacement and statelessness, meeting with refugee families overseas and addressing states and corporate leaders at the UN Security Council. Blanchett’s many successes also inspire countless women who want to gain a foothold in the film industry. She presented the 5th Filmmaker Award at an exclusive IWC Schaffhausen private dinner at the restaurant Haute, which was held as part of the 15th Zurich Film Festival (ZFF). She was spotted wearing the new Portofino Automatic 34, the latest women’s watches added to IWC’s iconic Portofino line and currently the smallest in the Swiss luxury watch manufacturer’s portfolio.
“WANDA, MY MIRACLE” WINS THE 5TH FILMMAKER AWARD
A total of thirty-eight projects had applied for the 5th Filmmaker Award. The jury finally selected “Wanda, My Miracle” as the winner. The film tells the story of a Polish woman named Wanda. While looking after an older Swiss couple in their villa, she embarks on an affair with their youngest son Gregor and unexpectedly becomes pregnant. The film will be released in 2020. Directed by Bettina Oberli from Bern, it is produced by Lukas Hobi and Reto Schaerli, who, in addition to the Filmmaker Award, were also presented with a Portugieser Automatic (IW500703) from IWC Schaffhausen. The premiere of “Die Stimme des Regenwaldes” (“Paradise War”) by Niklaus Hilber likewise underscored the importance of the Filmmaker Award. This highly anticipated film had officially opened the ZFF on 26 September. Telling the gripping story of Swiss environmental activist Bruno Manser, who fought alongside the Penan people to save the rainforest in Malaysia, this project won the Filmmaker Award in 2017.
“I am proud that the Filmmaker Award helped to bring this project to the large audience it deserves. The challenges involved in making this ambitious film have made it very clear that this award is essential for Swiss filmmakers.” – Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen
FILMMAKER AWARD HELPS TO BRING PROJECTS TO THE BIG SCREEN
The Filmmaker Award, which comes with CHF 100,000, was established by the Verein zur Filmförderung in der Schweiz (Association for Film Funding in Switzerland). As well as the co-founders of the ZFF, Nadja Schildknecht and Karl Spoerri, this association also includes Ringier CEO Marc Walder and IWC CEO Christoph Grainger- Herr. The prize closes a gap in Swiss film funding by targeting projects that are in the crucial production or post-production phase.