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Gucci Award Cites Film Achievements

Julian Schnabel and Michelle Yeoh are among the famous names associated with the second annual Gucci Group Award, to be presented in September during the Venice Film Festival.

PARIS — Julian Schnabel and Michelle Yeoh are among the famous names associated with the second annual Gucci Group Award, to be presented in September during the Venice Film Festival.

Schnabel, the artist turned filmmaker who won best director at Cannes for “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly,” is among those nominated for the prize, given to an artist who has made a noteworthy contribution to a film in the past 18 months.

The other nominees for the 2007 award are novelist Lee Chang-Dong, who wrote and directed “Secret Sunshine”; photographer Anton Corbijn, who directed a biopic about Joy Division’s Ian Curtis called “Control”; journalist Bhavna Talwar, who directed her first film, “Dharm,” about caste conflicts in India, and Polish artist Piotr Uklanski, who wrote and directed the spaghetti western “Summer Love.”

Actress Yeoh, recently seen in “Memoirs of a Geisha,” is on the selection committee, along with artist Francesco Vezzoli; actor and director Danny Huston; Stefano Tonchi, The New York Times T magazine’s editor in chief, and Marco Müller, director of the 64th Venice Film Festival. They will name the winner Sept. 3 during a ceremony at François Pinault’s art museum, Palazzo Grassi.

In a statement, Robert Polet, Gucci Group’s chairman and chief executive officer, said the luxury group and the festival “share a mission to support artists whose talents transcend ordinary limits…and who have brought their art to life on screen.”

Musician Nick Cave took home Gucci’s inaugural prize last year for his screenplay for “The Proposition,” a western with an intellectual bent.

This story first appeared in the July 9, 2007 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.