Until the very end, the team from "Nothing New in the West" in Hollywood is on the go. A few hours before Oscar night, hundreds of guests celebrated at the traditional reception of the German candidates in the historic Villa Aurora on Saturday (local time). "I still can't get it," said Daniel Brühl (44), who co-produced the anti-war film based on the novel by Erich Maria Remarque and plays a German politician in it. Recently seven Bafta awards in London and now nine Oscar chances, including in the top category "Best Picture", describes Brühl as "simply outrageous".
It is impressive what honor the film from England and the USA is given. "It's never happened before. It's a piece of film history," enthuses Brühl. Sunday night he will be at the Oscars with his wife. Colleagues Felix Kammerer and Albrecht Schuch are also there. More than 40 nominees and guests from the team around director Edward Berger are looking forward to the gala.
Main actor Kammerer (27) is still quite relaxed. "Just stay calm, eat something good before we start" is his plan for Sunday - "and just enjoy it". He has no expectations, says Schuch (37). "We've already won everything, with so many nominations."
More prize opportunities for German filmmakers
For director Berger, the reception at Villa Aurora has a special meaning. In 2015, together with his wife, the actress Nele Mueller-Stöfen, he spent several months in what is now the artist residency.
At the event, Minister of State for Culture Claudia Roth (Greens) referred to the historical significance of the villa in which the writer Lion Feuchtwanger once lived with his family after emigrating from Nazi Germany. Los Angeles became a haven for many exiles, including Remarque, whose book was banned after Adolf Hitler came to power and destroyed in the book burning in 1933.
In addition to the team from "Nothing New in the West", which has been nominated for nine Oscars, there are other prize opportunities for German filmmakers. Born in Braunschweig, Florian Hoffmeister has been nominated for his camera work on "Tár". In this section he meets, among others, the British James Friend, who put "Nothing New in the West" in the picture.
Born in Munich, Michael Keller (52), who has been working as an audio engineer in the USA for over 30 years, has been nominated for the biopic "Elvis" in the "Best Sound" category. There, too, "Nothing New in the West" is involved, alongside blockbusters such as "Avatar: The Way of Water", "Top Gun: Maverick" and "The Batman". It's pretty stressful, says Keller. "All top work, we are all friends and no one knows who will win."
In front of the Dolby Theater, where on Sunday evening (local time) the guests walked over the Oscar carpet, which was champagne-colored instead of red for the first time, the decorations were still in place hours earlier. TV crews rehearsed the schedule for Hollywood's big night with extras. The host is the US comedian Jimmy Kimmel for the third time. Stars such as Harrison Ford, Halle Berry, John Travolta and Glenn Close were announced as presenters.