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receives the 2018
by Vassilis Economou, Cineuropa
The Danish auteur is being presented with the biggest
cultural award in Denmark, which commemorates personalities that have
contributed to European culture.
of Lars von Trier's films are visually incredibly strong. He is a fantastic
image maker and has, as such, had a major impact on many
The biggest cultural award in Denmark, the
Sonning Prize (Sonningprisen) this year goes to Danish
filmmaker and screenwriter Lars von
Trier, who was elected by a committee under the University of
The inimitable Lars von Trier (© Zentropa)
The Sonning Prize is accompanied by a
sum of DKK 1 million (€135,000) and is normally awarded biennially to
personalities that have contributed to European culture.
the most innovative and groundbreaking film creators, von
Trier has received acknowledgment not only in his home country but
also beyond Europe’s borders. As for the decision to award him the prize, Milena
Bonifacini, the chairwoman of the Academy Council, underlines:
“As a filmmaker, Lars von Trier has managed to
give different genres his very own interpretation. In that sense, he is a
groundbreaking and avant-garde artist who positions himself confidently and
self-consciously in a place far removed from the ever more commercialised
mainstream films. It’s this continued embrace and break with the conventional
which sets Lars von Trier's work apart and has contributed to making European
film something special.”
Through over 20 films and TV productions in the past 30 years, von
Trier has become a distinguished figure in European culture,
without being limited to cinema. “All of Lars von Trier's
films are visually incredibly strong. He is a fantastic image maker and has, as
such, had a major impact on many artists,” notes Bonifacini.
The Sonning Prize was founded by author and editor
CJ Sonning (1879-1937) and will be awarded on his birthday, 19
April, in the Ceremonial Hall at the University of Copenhagen. It’s worth noting
that another film director, Austrian Michael
Haneke, picked up the prize back in 2014 (see the news).
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