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Swiss films compete for European prize

Bruno Ganz has been nominated for best actor at the European film festival. Keystone / Columbus Film / Handout

It's several years since a Swiss film has won a top award, but that could be about to change, when the European Film Prize is awarded this weekend.

The Swiss-Italian co-production, “Pane e tulipani” (“Bread and Tulips”), is one of seven films competing for the best film award. It is up against productions from Britain, Denmark, France and Sweden, including Lars von Trier’s “Dancer in the Dark” and Nick Park’s animated film “Chicken Run”.

Silvio Soldini’s romantic comedy is one of a small group of films with nominations in three categories. It’s in the running for best screenplay and its leading actor, Bruno Ganz, has been nominated for the best actor award.

If “Pane e tulipani” wins the top prize it will be the first major award for a Swiss film since Xavier Koller’s 1991 Oscar for “Reise der Hoffnung” (“Journey of Hope”).

But Italy, and not Switzerland, will receive the credit. Although the film received Swiss government financing and Soldini is a citizen of both countries, “Pane e tulipani” is considered an Italian film.

Swiss hopes are also resting on Arthur Cohn’s “One Day in September”, which has been nominated in the documentary category. The Swiss-British co-production stands a good chance – it won an Oscar earlier this year.

Films will be judged in eight categories at the film festival, which will be held in Paris on Saturday.

swissinfo with agencies

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR