Romanian Film director Cristian Mungiu awarded the French Legion of Honor

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Film director Cristian Mungiu received France’s highest distinction – the Legion of Honor in the rank of Knight, presented by French ambassador in Bucharest Michele Ramis on Thursday night.

Cristian Mungiu is the winner of the Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or in 2007 for his “4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days”, and he is also known for founding the ‘Les Films de Cannes a Bucarest’ festival.

Ambassador Ramis confessed that she got acquainted with the Romanian cinematography through Mungiu’s movies, particularly through the ‘powerful and unsettling’ ‘4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days’.

The French diplomat praised the social notes in Mungiu’s films, which reveal the social and political realities in Romania. Ramis also referred to the Romanian filmmaker’s decision not to relocate to Hollywood despite the multitude of offers coming from the American film industry.

In his turn, Cristian Mungiu stated the fortune pursued him during his career and in life, also mentioning that being directing assistant to French Bertrand Tavernier was a new stroke of luck. Asked back then if he would be interested in assisting the French director, he answered “Oui, biensur,” while joking these were the only words he remembered of the French he had learned in school.

Meanwhile, he improved his French, recalling that it has done it at the urge of the general delegate of the Cannes festival, who “threatened” him that he’ll have to deliver his speeches on the Cannes stage in French.

France has played a decisive, essential, part in my life, and I feel I don’t deserve all the recognition you grant me today. Maybe I have done something for the cinema, something for Romania, but I have certainly not done yet much for France, Cristian Mungiu concluded.

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