–by Dr. Laura Wilhelm, LauraWil Intercultural
Beverly Hills, CA (The Hollywood Times) 7/19/21 – On Wednesday, July 14th, 2021 the French Riviera Film Festival concluded its third annual celebration of short-form content with not just one but two awards ceremonies held at the Beverly Hills Hotel on Sunset Boulevard. The first ceremony awarded winners in several short film categories and the second recognized Hollywood actors George Chakiris, Caroline Lagerfelt, and Eric Roberts for lifetime achievements and industry excellence.
The 2021 FRFF winners are as follows. Fine submissions were received from over 20 countries this year.
- Best Director: Kate Campbell (BOUNDLESS) and Anna Fishbeyn (INVISIBLE ALICE)
- Best Actor: Ric Huang (THE TASTE OF GINGER)
- Best Actress: Noa Astanjelove (CINDY)
- Best Animation Short: GON, THE LITTLE FOX
- Best Comedy Short: FROM RUSSIA WITH MOTIVE 107
- Best Documentary Short: A WOMAN’S NEW WORLD
- Best Drama Short: INVISIBLE ALICE and THE TASTE OF GINGER
- Best Experimental Short: LOST TIME
- Best Fashion Short: FRANCESCA MARCHISIO #weareallinfinite
- Best Music Video: BACK TO US
- Best Sci-Fi/Horror Short: ALIENS ON HALLOWEEN and ISKRA
Award-winning directors Bertrand Normand, (THE PHOTOGRAPHER/FRFF Winner 2019), Anna Fishbeyn (INVISIBLE ALICE), and Christina Rose (A WOMAN’S NEW WORLD) all spoke at a Global Entertainment Showcase taking place virtually on July 11th to kick off the FRFF before the short films were screened online. Please follow the link below to view the panel.
Christina Rose joined Eva Lanska, another FRFF affiliate, at the Cannes Film Festival in France to discuss their exciting new projects. Christina’s film A WOMAN’S NEW WORLD is part of a series of six mini-documentaries about women who are blazing trails in male-dominated industries where they are underrepresented all over the world.
The seasoned Hollywood stars who received FRFF Lifetime Achievement and Industry Excellence Awards seemed genuinely thrilled to be recognized. “Thank you for making me a winner tonight!” exclaimed Eric Roberts, an actor’s actor who has often been passed over for Oscars and other major Hollywood awards.
Yet Roberts’ searing portrayal of Canadian rapist/murderer Paul Snider in Bob Fosse’s 1983 film STAR 80–a notoriously graphic biopic about Snider and PLAYBOY Playmate Dorothy Stratten–is still cited as one of the best performances ever committed to film.
Caroline Lagerfelt, the daughter of a Swedish diplomat who was born in France, spoke approvingly to this reporter about the FRFF’s inclusivity and international scope. And indeed, all of the FRFF founders, board members, and judges have extensively worked and traveled overseas and share a true passion for international media projects just like Lagerfelt herself. Her extensive credits include Broadway and Off-Broadway productions as well as memorable roles on high-style television shows such as BEVERLY HILLS, 90210 and GOSSIP GIRL.
George Chakiris, the Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, was born to Greek immigrants. His swarthy appearance led him over the years to many “ethnic” roles such as the Sharks gang leader Bernardo in the 1961 film version of WEST SIDE STORY. This breakthrough performance garnered Chakiris both Golden Globe and Academy Awards.
The FRFF festivities concluded with a lively dance performance by the Lombard Twins from Argentina and a lovely light bites reception at the Beverly Hills Hotel’s Bar Nineteen12. Merci beaucoup to festival co-founders Gotham Chandna and Nicole Muj and co-producer Jacqueline Lewis for pulling off yet another multidimensional media event with such panache!