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Werner Herzog to be honored with Coolidge Award Feb. 8

Director Werner Herzog in his 2016 documentary “Into the Inferno.”TIFF/Courtesy of TIFF

The excellent — and eccentric — German filmmaker Werner Herzog will be in town Feb. 8 to receive the Coolidge Award, given annually to folks in the film industry whose work represents original and outstanding contributions to cinema. Herzog, whose work is nothing if not original, has directed more than a few masterpieces, including “Aguirre, The Wrath of God,” “Nosferatu,” and the 2005 documentary “Grizzly Man.”

The 75-year-old filmmaker will be at the Coolidge Corner Theatre for a Q&A following an afternoon screening of one of his movies — it’s not been decided which one — and then on stage again in the evening to receive the award.

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Once called “the most important film director alive” by Francois Truffaut, Herzog has produced, written, and directed more than 60 feature and documentary films. His movies are often characterized by stunning realism, oddball protagonists (see “Stroszek”), and poignant visions of anti-conformity.

Previous Coolidge Award honorees include actress Meryl Streep, actor Viggo Mortensen, actress Jane Fonda, director Jonathan Demme, film editor Thelma Schoonmaker, cinematographer Vittorio Storaro, director Zhang Yimou, producer Jeremy Thomas, and animators the Brothers Quay.