Alejandro González Iñárritu (Bardo) is set to receive the Cinema Audio Society’s Filmmaker of the Year honor at the59th CAS Awards, taking placing at the InterContinental Los Angeles Downtown hotel on March 4.
This will be the 18th year that CAS bestows its Filmmaker Award. Past recipients include Gil Cates, George Clooney, Bill Condon, Jonathan Demme, Jon Favreau, Taylor Hackford, Richard Linklater, James Mangold, Rob Marshall, Paul Mazursky, Jay Roach, Sir Ridley Scott, Henry Selick, Steven Spielberg, Quentin Tarantino, Joe Wright and Edward Zwick.
The Cinema Audio Society will also this year honor five-time Oscar nominee Peter J. Devlin, CAS (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever) for its Career Achievement Award, as previously announced. Its recognition of Iñárritu will follow the release of his latest awards-contending feature, Bardo, False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths — his first made in Mexico in over 20 years, which has been described as his most personal to date. The dreamlike Netflix epic, examining the existential crisis of a famed journalist and documentary filmmaker, world premiered at the 2022 Venice Film Festival and will bow on the streamer on December 16, having opened in theaters on November 18.
“It is an honor to name director Alejandro González Iñárritu as recipient of the prestigious 2023 CAS Filmmaker Award,” said CAS President Karol Urban. “His sobering portrayals of the human experience bring empathy and consciousness to perspectives often left untold and unconsidered. No doubt drawing on his history in music, his films experiment and utilize sound — uniquely embracing its capacity to emotionally engulf the viewer.”
“Being singled out as a filmmaker by my colleagues in the Cinema Audio Society is a great honor,” remarked Iñárritu. “I have had the pleasure of collaborating with some of the most gifted sound designers in the industry and truly cannot emphasize the importance of the work they do in creating a fully sensorial experience for audiences when watching a film.”
Added the filmmaker: “Sound is primal. It is a sensorial frequency, it hits our body, and our body does not lie. Unlike the image, it does not need a process of interpretation or intellectualization. For this reason, I think sound is even more impactful than the visuals, and through it, you can have parallel narratives along a film.”
Always sensitive to the importance of music and sound, Iñárritu began his career as a host and director at Mexico City’s rock radio station WFM before transitioning to writing, producing and directing. The renowned Mexican filmmaker is the first to have been nominated for the Best Picture and Director Oscars, the first to win an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay and for Best Picture, the first to receive the Best Director Award at Cannes and the first to win a DGA Award for Outstanding Director (and to win the DGA Award in consecutive years). He made his feature directorial debut in 2000 with the Academy Award-nominated Amores Perros before going on to direct the acclaimed features 21 Grams, Babel, Biutiful, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) and The Revenant, also notably creating the VR installation Carne y Arena, among other projects.
The CAS Awards honor outstanding achievements in sound mixing in seven categories, with a Student Recognition Award also being presented. More information on the timeline for the 2023 awards can be found here.