THE UPPER ARAGONESE FESTIVAL HONORS ‘ONE OF THE MOST OUSTANDING SPANISH FILMMAKERS BOTH AT HOME AND ABROAD’
THE TRIBUTE TO THE DIRECTOR’S CAREER WILL INCLUDE HER FEATURE FILM LEARNING TO DRIVE, TO BE SCREENED IN ONE OF THE DRIVE-IN SHOWINGS THE FESTIVAL IS WORKING ON
Director, scriptwriter and producer Isabel Coixet will be awarded the Luis Buñuel Prize in this edition of 48th Huesca International Film Festival. A filmmaker with an undeniable talent that led her to become the woman with the most Goya Awards in history (a total of eight) and a regular name at great film gatherings in Berlin, Cannes and Venice. Author of great works such as Things I Never Told You, My Life Without Me, The Secret Life of Words, Endless Night or The Bookshop; Isabel ‘has her own language, a way of filmmaking that made her one of the most outstanding Spanish directors both at home and abroad’, declares Rubén Moreno, director of Huesca festival.
This edition’s Luis Buñuel Award distinguishes a key figure of Spanish cinema and a benchmark for future generations, a woman that, in addition to being director and scriptwriter, is also a producer, supporting young female filmmakers to have their own voice within industry. Thus, the Catalan filmmaker joins the cast of personalities that have received this prize, where we can see prominent names such as Bertrand Tavernier, Marisa Paredes, Stephen Frears, Carlos Saura, Ángela Molina, Jean-Claude Carrière, Costa-Gavras, Álex de la Iglesia or the Taviani brothers among many others.
The festival tribute will feature an exclusive debate with the honoree where she will be awarded virtually, an interview that will be displayed on the festival official social networks. The audience of Huesca will be able to enjoy her filmography at one of the drive-in seasons that are going to be held, it will be the feature film Learning to Drive.
The Movie, premiered at Toronto Festival, is starred by the Oscar nominee Patricia Clarkson and the Oscar-winner Ben Kingsley; a dramatic comedy about Wendy’s life, a writer from Manhattan that decides to get a driving license with a Hindu political refugee as instructor.
Isabel Coixet (Barcelona, 1960) is one of the most awarded Spanish filmmakers. Her passion for cinema started as a child, when she was given an 8 mm camera on the occasion of her First Communion. After obtaining a BA degree in History at Barcelona University, she started professionally in the world of advertising where she received countless awards.
Some time later, she arrived to the world of cinema and after producing the short film Mira y verás (1984), she directed her first work Demasiado viejo para morir joven (1989); she both directed and wrote the script of a film that brought her first nomination to the Goya Awards as Best New Director. It was followed by Things I Never Told You in 1996, her first English-language movie, and two years later, by A los que aman.
In 2000, she founded her own production company, Miss Wasabi Films, her international success came three years later thanks to My Life Without Me. Afterwards, she produced titles such as The Secret Life of Words (2005), that was awarded four Goyas; Elegy (2008); Map of the Sounds of Tokyo (2009); Aral. The Lost Sea (2010); Listening to Judge Garzón (2011), that won the Goya in the Best Documentary category; White Tide (2012); Yesterday Never Ends (2013), that won three Silver Biznagas at Málaga Festival; Another Me (2013) and Learning to Drive (2014).
2015 was another important year for her career, her film Nobody Wants the Night, starred by Juliette Binoche and once again winner of four Goyas, opened the 66th edition of Berlin Festival: she was the second woman in the festival history to achieve it. In addition, that same year she received the prize of the French Ministry of Culture of Knight of Arts and Letters. With a cinematographic language that equally adapts to short and to length film, to fiction and to documentary; Isabel kept achieving success with titles such as Talking about Rose. Prisoner of Hissène Habré (2015); Spain in a Day (2016); The Bookshop (2017) won the Goya Awards in the Best Film, Best Director and Best Script categories, this sums up to a total of eight direct awards to the filmmaker, who became the most awarded woman in the history of this prizes.
Currently, after having premiered her last feature film Elisa & Marcela (2019) at Berlin Festival, she embarked on a new challenge with her first series, Foodie Love (2019), achieving critical and audience success. At present she is post-producing her new work: It Snows in Benidorm.
Huesca International Film Festival is sponsored by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, Aragon Government, Provincial Government of Huesca, the City Council of Huesca, Anselmo Pié Foundation and the collaboration of Obra Social “la Caixa”, TUHUESCA and Women Institute of Aragon.