In what will assuredly be remembered as a night celebrating French cinema (both current and classic), two films dominated the 84th Academy Awards. The Artist, The French black and white, silent jewel of a film that celebrates vintage Hollywood production of the “golden age” of silent cinema, and Hugo, the English language, 3D homage to French film wizard Georges Méliès, both received five Oscars. The night clearly confirmed the extraordinary relationship that exists between French and American cinema. And it was another extraordinary night for Technicolor customers.
Hugo dominated the craft categories, of principal interest to Technicolor, with cinematographer Robert Richardson, ASC and visual effects supervisor Rob Legato leading the way with well-deserved Oscars. Both wins were generally considered long shots, in very competitive races. Director Martin Scorsese’s remarkable achievement has been acknowledged as the finest example of any film produced in 3D. Technicolor’s Laser-Pacific facility in Hollywood worked closely with the filmmakers to facilitate the film’s dailies, editorial conform, digital intermediate, and 3D color-grading. And the company’s digital cinema team produced masters for the film’s release around the world.
The Artist now has the distinction of being one of the only contemporary films to have swept all the major awards of the season for Best Picture, including the Oscars; the French Cesar Awards; the British Academy’s BAFTA Awards; and the American independent Spirit Awards. Technicolor recently announced its acquisition of the post-production facilities in Paris that served director Michel Hazanavicius and producer Thomas Langmann, on the way to their wonderful achievement.
Clearly the big winner of the weekend was The Weinstein Company, and partners Harvey and Bob Weinstein. TWC brought home 8 wins at the Oscars, for films including The Artist and The Iron Lady – also served by Technicolor.