Olivia Harrison is Awarded the UNAM Film Library Medal at the 20th FICM

Gustavo R. Gallardo 10/27/2022

At the 20th Morelia International Film Festival (FICM), the producer, writer, curator and philanthropist, Olivia Harrison, received the UNAM Film Library Medal for her support in restoring, among others, El (1953), by Luis Buñuel, thereby contributing to keeping Mexico’s filmographic memory alive.

Attended by the president, vice-president and director of the festival, Alejandro Ramírez, Cuauhtémoc Cárdenas Batel, and Daniela Michel, as well as the executive director of The Film Foundation, Margaret Bodde, the director of Distribution of the UNAM Film Library, Jorge Martínez Micher, and Hugo Villa Smythe, who was there on behalf of the director of the Film Library.

"Personally, it's my favorite movie in the history of cinema, so sharing with all of you is a very magical moment for me," said Daniela Michel.

"We also want to give a very special thanks to Guillermo del Toro, who was unable to join us, but has been instrumental in restoring this film," he added.


EL Luis Buñuel

The Material World Foundation, headed by Olivia Harrison, has collaborated with The Film Foundation, an organization created by Martin Scorsese, in the restoration of invaluable classic Mexican films such as Enamorada (1946), by Emilio Fernández; Dos monjes (1934), by Juan Bustillo Oro; and Redes (1936), by Fred Zinnemann and Emilio Gómez Muriel, which have been presented at past editions of FICM.

For this reason, Martínez Micher said, reading from the document delivered by the UNAM Film Library, that the UNAM Film Library Medal was awarded to Olivia Harrison for her contribution "to enriching the world's film heritage and keeping it alive in our collective memory," and added: "Olivia, my dear, with this medal you take a little piece of Mexican cinema with you."


Medalla Olivia Harrison

Olivia Harrison thanked FICM and the UNAM Film Library for the award, and said that Mexican cinema "brings back great memories of my family."

“My family loved the classic movies so much that they were always playing in the background. We always had a Mexican movie or soap opera on TV. For us, this was very important,” she said, also sharing that George Harrison loved the cinema and that she encouraged him to watch Mexican films “even without subtitles”. 

In Él, Francisco Galván de Montemayor is a wealthy man with a serene appearance; a religious conservative and a virgin. He meets Gloria at the Holy Thursday foot-washing ceremony. Later on, at a party in his mansion, he woos her and then marries her. But from the wedding night on, his jealousy transforms him into an obsessive and paranoid being who sees murder and mutilation as a solution to his madness

FICM 2022

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