Justine Triet On Oscar Nominations Haul For ‘Anatomy Of A Fall’: “This Is Crazy For Me”

Justine Triet’s Cannes Palme d’Or winner Anatomy of a Fall continued its awards-season ascent by scoring five Academy Award nominations including Best Picture and Best Director.

“I’m so happy,” Triet said Tuesday from her home in Paris after hearing the news.

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The Best Director nomination was “historic,” she observed, because Triet believes she’s the first French female filmmaker to receive such recognition.

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“This is crazy for me,” Triet told Deadline. “It means a lot because I’m not 20 years old, I’m 45, and I’ve lived in this world a long time, and I lived before the MeToo movement and I watched the evolution of the situation for women.”

She added: “The young generation is going to leave something very different compared to me, and I can’t wait to see the change of all the industry for women. For me, it means a lot.

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“It’s totally crazy, and, of course, I was not prepared for this,” the filmmaker told us. “It’s so beautiful and it means a lot, of course. It means that when a movie touches somebody. It can overcome everything, so it’s a really beautiful story for Anatomy of a Fall. It’s totally crazy for me now. I don’t realize it now. I think maybe tonight, but now — I’m like, shocked.”

Triet admitted that she cried when she saw her editor Laurent Sénėchal’s name cited on the Best Editing list. ”I never cried in my life when I won the Palme d’Or, but I wept  when I saw Laurent’s name. I was in tears because we spent a lot of time in a small room to just dream about this movie. We did a lot of work, and I was very moved to watch his name.”

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Triet recalled when she and Anatomy of a Fall star Sandra Hüller met Academy CEO Bill Kramer on a mountaintop during the Telluride Film Festival and he joked about seeing them again “next March.”

“Honestly, when I was in Telluride I could not imagine this because for French people Anatomy of a Fall — it’s in the independent cinema, it didn’t cost a lot, it’s a small budget and in every layer of the craft we really made it work as well as we could. So it’s a big surprise for us to find ourselves alongside the likes of Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon and Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer,” she noted.

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Asked how she felt abut her film prevailing in the Oscars nominations after French cinema authorities voted to shut out her film as the country’s official International Oscar selection, picking The Taste of Things as its submission. “Of course we were disappointed and surprised at the time, but I think that the film overcame that and there was such a campaign that was carried out for the Oscars, which went much further and surpassed that.

“Which isn’t to say that the moment of surprise wasn’t there,” the filmmaker said.

She added that it wasn’t the fault of the French people at large, rather it was “the decision of five people in a room, and we’re so happy to have surpassed this non-selection.”

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It’s believed that France’s cultural establishment turned against Triet after she criticized President Macron during her acceptance speech at Cannes.

Asked if she had any comment to make about Mr. Macron, she chuckled and said, “No comment.”

Does she hope to hear from him, though? “No, I’m going to enjoy this with my friends and with my family,” Triet said. “I’m sure that there will be some kind of reaction as due protocol, but I’m not expecting anything. I’m an artist: My job is to make films, and I’m just going to continue to do that.”

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During the conversation Triet sipped from a bottle of water. Will she celebrate with something stronger later on, perhaps? “Yes ,I think probably we are going to drink a lot of champagne. Maybe in a few hours I could start to drink something more stronger than water.”

What’s next for her? “I have a few projects, but it’s impossible to give an answer now. I want to put myself in a very empty room without noise, without children and without my family and just to have time to start a new project. I think after March I will start to do it.”

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Triet’s movie secured seven BAFTA nominations last week, including Best Director and Best Film. It was also nominated for Original Screenplay, Film Not in the English Language, Actress for Hüller, Casting and Editing.

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Anatomy of a Fall has collected honors at the Golden Globes, the Critics Choice Awards and as recently as Monday the film garnered trophies at France’s Lumière Awards.

Triet wrote the film, about a novelist whose husband is found dead outside their chalet in the French Alps, with husband Arthur Harari.

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