James Schamus will serve as president of the International Jury at the Berlin International Film Festival next month. With an impressive fellow jury including Barbara Broccoli, Trine Dyrholm, Mitra Faharani, Greta Gerwig, Michel Gondry, Tony Leung and Christoph Waltz, Schamus and company will decide who will receive the Golden Bear and Silver Bears of the 2014 Berlinale Competition.
Schamus made news late last year when he left a restructuring Focus Features, the company he led since 2002.
Full list of jury members below, with bios care of the Berlinale.
James Schamus, Jury President, USA
In his capacity as a producer, James Schamus has been responsible not only for the Academy Award-winning film Brokeback Mountain, but also for numerous other Ang Lee films, including The Wedding Banquet, which won the Berlinale Golden Bear in 1993. James Schamus also wrote the script for the Ang Lee film The Ice Storm and was co-writer of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Lust, Caution by Ang Lee. He is also Professor of Professional Practice in Columbia University’s School of the Arts, where he teaches film history and theory. As one of independent cinema’s most important champions, James Schamus knows the balancing act between Hollywood's studio system and art-house cinema better than anyone. In 1991, he founded the production company Good Machine in New York, which merged with USA Films in 2002 to become the new company Focus Features. For over a decade, James Schamus led Focus Features, and during that era, was involved in the production and distribution of award-winning and celebrated films such as Far from Heaven, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Lost in Translation, Milk, Dallas Buyers Club and Teddy Award winner The Kids Are All Right. Thanks to Focus Features, international successes such as 8 Women, The Pianist and The Motorcycle Diaries were presented in American cinemas.
Barbara Broccoli, USA
As the daughter of producer Albert R. Broccoli, Barbara Broccoli grew up on film sets and had her first experiences as an assistant director and assistant producer on the films A View to a Kill and Licence to Kill. Following the death of her father, she took over the production of the James Bond films with her brother Michael G. Wilson, starting with GoldenEye through to the most recent instalments Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace and Sam Mendes’s Academy Award-winning Skyfall. Ms Broccoli also puts her extensive industry knowledge to use beyond the James Bond franchise: she has produced the documentary Stolen Childhoods, the TV drama Crime of the Century and most recently executive produced The Silent Storm with Andrea Riseborough and Damian Lewis. Her theatre credits include “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” (2002 London, 2005 Broadway), “A Steady Rain” (2009 Broadway), “Chariots of Fire” (2012 West End), “Once” (2012 Broadway, 2013 West End) and most recently “Strangers on a Train”, which opened in London’s West End in November 2013. In addition, Ms Broccoli was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 2008.
Trine Dyrholm, Denmark
Far beyond the borders of her native country, Trine Dyrholm has become one of the most successful Danish actors. She’s a regular at the Berlinale: she had roles in the Competition films In Your Hands by Annette K. Olesen, A Soap by Pernille Fischer Christensen, Olesen’s Little Soldier, and most recently in A Royal Affair by Nikolaj Arcel. She can also be seen regularly in German productions, such as in Ulrich Köhler’s Bungalow, which celebrated its premiere in the 2002 Berlinale Panorama, or recently in 3096 Days by Sherry Hormann. Her performance in “4:48 Psychosis”, for which she received the Danish theatrical award Reumert in 2002, led her to the legendary Volksbühne in Berlin. She has won numerous prestigious awards; she is even the only actor ever to have won five Bodil Awards. Trine most recently starred in the films In a Better World and Love Is All You Need by Susanne Bier. Currently, she can be seen in the new Danish Television series The Legacy, whose first episode aired January 1st 2014.
Mitra Farahani, Iran
Iranian filmmaker and painter Mitra Farahani was born in Teheran and now lives in Paris. She studied graphic art and painting in Iran before taking courses in video studies in France. Her first documentary short film Just a Woman won the Teddy Award at the 2001 Berlinale. Tabous – Zohre & Manouchehr (2004) and Fifi Howls from Happiness (2013), two feature documentaries, were each premiered in the Panorama section of the Berlin International Film Festival. In 2007, her documentary Behdjat Sadr: Suspended Time portrayed one of the pioneers of Abstract Expressionist painting in Iran. In parallel, Mitra Farahani’s painting works pursue the same issue of realism that she deals with in her cinema works.
Greta Gerwig, USA
Over the course of just a few years, Greta Gerwig has become not only a figurehead of American independent film, but also one of the freshest new voices in Hollywood. She had her breakthrough at the 2010 Berlinale Competition, in Noah Baumbach’s Greenberg. Last year, the two of them returned to Berlin with the cooperatively written comedy Frances Ha, which became a favourite of Panorama audiences. For her role in Frances Ha, she earned a Golden Globe and a Broadcast Film Critics Association Award nomination. In between those two films, Greta Gerwig also worked with legendary filmmakers like Woody Allen (To Rome with Love) and Whit Stillman (Damsels in Distress). She can soon be seen in Eden, the English-language film debut by French director Mia Hansen-Løve.
Michel Gondry, France
Like many of his colleagues, French filmmaker Michel Gondry began his career as a television ad director, and with music videos for artists such as the Rolling Stones, Björk or Daft Punk. The director, screenwriter and producer presented his feature film debut, Human Nature, in 2001. He received an Academy Award for his film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. His films The Science of Sleep and Be Kind Rewind both screened out of competition in the Berlinale Competition programme. His documentary Dave Chapelle's Block Party was presented in 2006 in Panorama, where his animation Is the Man Who Is Tall Happy? will celebrate its European premiere in 2014. In addition, Michel Gondry has most recently directed such diverse productions as The Green Hornet, starring Seth Rogen and Christoph Waltz, The We and the I, and Mood Indigo, starring Roman Duris and Audrey Tautou.
Tony Leung, People’s Republic of China
For over 20 years, Hong Kong born Tony Leung has been one of the most popular actors in Chinese cinema. Among his films with frequent collaborator Wong Kar Wai are Ashes of Time, Chungking Express, Happy Together, 2046, and most recently The Grandmaster, opening film of the 2013 Berlinale. In 2000, he was awarded the Actor’s Prize of the Cannes Film Festival for In the Mood for Love. Leung, who is equally at home in the action genre as he is in Auteur cinema, also worked with filmmakers such as Ang Lee (Lust, Caution), John Woo (Hard Boiled, Red Cliff), Hou Hsiao-Hsien (A City of Sadness), or Zhang Yimou (Hero) and played a lead part in the international success Infernal Affairs by Andrew Lau and Alan Mak. Over the course of his career, he has so far received seven Hong Kong Film Awards as well as countless other awards.
Christoph Waltz, Austria
Two-time Academy Award winner Christoph Waltz began his career in theatre and rose to worldwide distinction through a number of powerful performances in film. After many years as a well-known actor among German-speaking audiences for his various television roles, and receiving the Adolf Grimme Award, among others, Waltz was introduced to international audiences in director Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds. The performance earned Waltz his first Academy Award in addition to a number of other awards such as the Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild, the British Academy Film Award and the Best Actor Award at the Cannes Film Festival. He went on to star in Roman Polanski’s screen adaptation of “Carnage”. Waltz followed up with his second Academy Award win, this time for his riveting performance in Tarantino’s Django Unchained, where he received multiple bolstering accolades. He has been represented at Berlinale with several past films, such as Oskar Roehler’s Der alte Affe Angst in competition for 2003, Lapislazuli and Berlin Blues. Waltz can next be seen in Terry Gilliam’s The Zero Theorem and Tim Burton’s Big Eyes.
The International Jury presents the following awards:
Golden Bear for Best Film (awarded to the film’s producer)
Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize
Silver Bear Alfred Bauer Prize for a feature film that opens new perspectives
Silver Bear for Best Director
Silver Bear for Best Actress
Silver Bear for Best Actor
Silver Bear for Best Script
Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Contribution in the categories camera, editing, music, score, costume or set design