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Blogging from San Sebastian September 17-25, 2021

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Sara Bilbatua will receive the Zinemira Award at the San Sebastian Festival’s 68th edition


The casting director from Eibar will collect the award at the Basque Cinema Gala on September 22

Casting director Sara Bilbatua will receive the Zinemira Award given by San Sebastian Festival and the Ibaia and EPE/APV producers associations in recognition of an outstanding personality of Basque cinema. Bilbatua, responsible for the casting on more than 75 audiovisual productions in the last 25 years, will collect the award at the Basque Cinema Gala in the Victoria Eugenia Theatre on September 22 during the Festival’s 68th edition.

Having obtained her degree in Psychology at the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), Sara Bilbatua (Eibar, 1958) studied dramatic art at the William Layton Theatre in Madrid. Her first work as a casting director was in 1994 on the film Justino, un asesino de la tercera edad, directed by the tandem Santiago Aguilar-Luis Guridi, known as La Cuadrilla.

Since then, she has become one of Spain’s best-known casting directors thanks to her work alongside filmmakers including Pedro Almodóvar (Todo sobre mi madre / All About My Mother; Hable con ella / Talk to Her), Juanma Bajo Ulloa (Airbag), Mariano Barroso (Éxtasis, Los lobos de Washington), Daniel Calparsoro (Salto al vacío / Jump into the Void), Isabel Coixet (A los que aman / To Those Who Love), Julio Medem (Los amantes del círculo polar / Lovers of the Arctic circle; Lucía y el sexo / Sex and Lucia; Caótica Ana / Chaotic Ana), Jaime Rosales (La soledad / Solitary Fragments; Petra), Guillermo del Toro (El espinazo del diablo / The Devil’s Backbone; El laberinto del fauno / Pan’s Labyrinth), David Trueba (La buena vida / The Good Life) and Carlos Vermut (Magical Girl; Quién te cantará / Who Will Sing to You), and many more.

Among the television projects in which she has participated through her agency Tanami Casting are series such as La línea invisible, Velvet Coleccción, Tiempos de guerra, Refugiados, Gran Reserva, Gran Hotel, Amar es para siempre, Maitena. Estados alterados, La señora and Hermanos & detectives. Furthermore, in 2004 she wrote and directed the short film El aire que respiro, which was included in the Basque Government’s Kimuak catalogue.

Bilbatua will receive the Zinemira Award at the Basque Cinema Gala, also including the screening of Bizimina, a short film directed by Migueltxo Molina, Pablo Iraburu and Jon Maya combining documentary and film to build a comforting story in these times of pandemic.  

To date, the honorary award has gone to Imanol Uribe (2009), Álex Angulo (2010), Elías Querejeta (2011), Michel Gaztambide (2012), Juanba Berasategi (2013), Pedro Olea (2014), Karmele Soler (2015), Ramón Barea (2016), Julia Juaniz (2017), Ramón Agirre (2018) and José María Txepe Lara (2019).




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About SanSebastian

Barreda de Biurrun Inés

Blogging from the 67th San Sebastian Film Festival
Reporting by Inés Barreda de Biurrun and Bruno Chatelin.

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