The French Minister of Culture, Roselyne Bachelot-Narquin, announced that Chicago International Film Festival Artistic Director Mimi Plauché has been awarded the title and rank of Chevalier de l’ordre des arts et des lettres (Knight of the Order of Arts and Lettres). Given since 1957 by the French Ministry of Culture, this honorary distinction is one of the main distinctions among the four Ministerial orders of the French Republic. Plauché will receive the distinction at a gala event held on Monday, September 13, 7:00pm at Bridge 410, 410 N. Paulina St. in Chicago.
In her letter, the French Minister of Culture shared her congratulations and emphasized Mimi Plauché’s “contribution and commitment to cultural service.”
“I am so pleased that Mimi Plauché is receiving this French award that acknowledges her outstanding professional achievements as an internationally recognized programming director who throughout her career at the Chicago International Film Festival has been committed to bringing the best French cinema to Chicago audiences,” said Tanguy Accart, Cultural Attaché at the Chicago office of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States.
Plauché, who has been with the Chicago International Film Festival since 2006, has served as Artistic Director since 2016. During this time, Plauché has committed to ensuring the Festival has a great international presence, screening Best International Film Oscar©-winners including ROMA and The Salesman, while also specifically showcasing French films, including Academy Award-winner The Artist and Gold Hugo winner Portrait of a Lady on Fire. This year, Plauché hosted a panel, co-presented by IndieWire, which highlighted the directors of several of the 2020 International Oscar© contenders from the Chicago International Film Festival’s official selection.
“It is a tremendous honor to receive this distinction,” said Plauché. “Ever since I was young, tagging along with my parents to the theater to see the latest masterwork by François Truffaut, Claude Chabrol, Agnes Varda, or Louis Malle, French cinema has been an essential and sustaining part of my film life. It has also had an enduring legacy over the 57 years of the Chicago International Film Festival. It is a privilege to enrich this tradition, as we continue to present and celebrate exciting rising talents alongside the great auteurs of the 21st century. The creativity and dedication of the Cultural Services of the French Embassy and the Consulate General of France in Chicago to French cinema and to the Festival continue to inspire my passion for bringing French cinema to audiences.”
The Order of Arts and Letters (Ordre des Arts et des Lettres) recognizes “eminent artists and writers, as well as people who have contributed significantly to furthering the arts in France and throughout the world.” American recipients of the award include Dave Kehr, Uma Thurman, and Jim Jarmusch.
A ceremony celebrating this momentous honor will take place at the Chicago International Film Festival’s Lights, Camera, Chicago fundraiser on September 13 in Chicago.