Bridging the Past and the Future at the American Cinematheque Awards

·3-min read

Awards season in Hollywood is full of starry nights, but the American Cinematheque Awards shine especially bright.

Unlike other award shows, which honor a broad range of talent, the Cinematheque Awards single out “an extraordinary artist in the entertainment industry who is fully engaged in his or her work and is committed to making a significant contribution to the art of motion pictures.”

For 2021, that honoree was BAFTA winner and Academy Award nominee Scarlett Johansson. Gwen Deglise, Alexandre Desplat, Hunter Johansson, Bryan Lourd and Bruce Bozzi were among the celebrities, producers, film lovers and industry friends who gathered in Beverly Hills, Calif., for the Nov. 18 gala. Jon Favreau, Andy Richter, Abbie Cornish, Jamie Lee Curtis, Kevin Feige, Thomas McKenzie and Jeremy Renner were also in attendance to pay tribute to Johansson’s distinguished career. Those tributes included praise and anecdotes, such as Cornish recalling how moved she was by Johansson’s role in “Lost in Translation,” and Feige reminding everyone of Johansson’s abilities as both an actor and a producer. In closing, Renner concluded the evening by formally presenting the award to his “favorite human and superhero.”

. - Credit: Courtesy of Lavazza
. - Credit: Courtesy of Lavazza

Courtesy of Lavazza

The presentation was held in the storied ballroom of the Beverly Hilton, one of Hollywood’s most distinguished event spaces and a perfect fit with American Cinematheque’s focus on historic buildings. Guests were treated to Lavazza’s Espresso Negroni “coffeetail,” a popular specialty from the brand.

As a member-supported, cultural film organization that provides year-round events, programming, festivals, retrospectives, lectures and screenings, American Cinematheque is one of the most important and relevant organizations in Hollywood today. Not only is it a flash point for recognizing talent in Hollywood itself, but the organization is also an important benefactor of numerous restorations of historic theaters around the country. In a world where the number of beloved cinemas is quickly dwindling, Cinematheque’s emphasis on restoration and preservation work is particularly appreciated.

Lavazza’s sponsorship of the 35th annual awards show is helping with the restoration of vintage photographs and film equipment, the expansion of film programs and educational initiatives for emerging talent.

Its partnership with the American Cinematheque Awards is just one facet of the coffee brand’s commitment to supporting entertainment and the arts. Over the past year, Lavazza’s signature blue logo and white ceramic cups have been seen at events with Interscope Records, Netflix, the Golden Globe Awards, Atlantic Records and Hello Sunshine, among others.

Photo Cred: Bryan Beasley
Photo Cred: Bryan Beasley

The brand’s commitment to supporting arts and entertainment dates back to its 1992 launch of the annual Lavazza Calendar – a project that has since become a synergistic expression of the coffee brand’s philosophy and identity and one that has engaged some of the greatest creatives of our time.

This year, to emphasize its commitment to cinema, Lavazza partnered with Academy Award-winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki on its 2022 calendar, “I Can Change the World,” which highlights six artists and activists who are committed to enacting positive change.

“The ability to imagine the future and see beyond limits and boundaries is what has always made our country, Italy, and our brand, Lavazza, a fertile place for the emergence of new visions of the world,” said Davide Riboni, president of Lavazza Americas.

Ultimately — whether it is in the world of cinema, photography, or any field within the arts — Lavazza’s patronage is synonymous with the idea that creativity can make the world a better place, and preserving creative artifacts from the past is an important investment in both the present and the future.

“We seek to create the future by enhancing the present, as all visionaries do,” says Riboni. “In this sense, creating a film is like creating a coffee blend: It arises from intuition, inspiration and dedication.”

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