Venice Film Festival jury: Oscar winner Alfonso Cuarón president
The 2015 Venice Film Festival, to be held Sept. 2–12, has announced the members of its three main juries: Venezia 72, Horizons, and the Luigi De Laurentiis Award for Best Debut Film. In case you’re wondering, “Why Venezia 72”? Well, the simple answer is that this is the 72nd edition of the festival.
Looking at the lists below, you’ll notice that, as usual, Europeans dominate the award juries. The only two countries from the Americas represented are the U.S. and Mexico, and here and there you’ll find a sprinkling of Asian film talent.
Golden Lion jury
The Golden Lion – Venezia 72 Competition – jury is comprised by the following:
- Jury President Alfonso Cuarón, the first Mexican national to take home the Best Director Academy Award (for the Sandra Bullock-George Clooney space melodrama Gravity). Cuarón’s other movie credits include the dystopian Children of Men, starring Clive Owen; the François Truffaut-esque Y Tu Mamá También, with Maribel Verdú, Gael García Bernal, and Diego Luna; and the Daniel Radcliffe fantasy Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
- American actress and director Elizabeth Banks, whose on-screen credits include The Hunger Games and its two sequels, all starring Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, and Liam Hemsworth. Banks made her directorial debut earlier this year with the sequel Pitch Perfect 2.
- French author, screenwriter, and director Emmanuel Carrère, whose film efforts (as director-screenwriter) include La moustache (2005), starring Vincent Lindon, Emmanuelle Devos, and Mathieu Amalric, and the documentary Retour à Kotelnitch (2003). A film version of Carrère’s 2011 novel Limonov – to be adapted and directed by Saverio Costanzo (see further below) – is currently in the pre-production stages.
- Turkish director Nuri Bilge Ceylan, 2014 Cannes Film Festival Palme d’Or winner for Winter Sleep, and whose other film credits include Once Upon a Time in Anatolia and Three Monkeys.
- Taiwanese filmmaker Hou Hsiao-hsien, winner of the Venice 1989 Golden Lion for A City of Sadness. Earlier this year, Hsiao-hsien’s The Assassin earned him the Best Director Award at Cannes.
- German actress Diane Kruger, whose credits range from Nicolas Cage’s National Treasure and Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds to Christian Carion’s Merry Christmas / Joyeux Noël and Benoît Jacquot’s Farewell, My Queen / Les adieux à la reine.
- Italian filmmaker Francesco Munzi, whose Black Souls / Anime nere vied for the Golden Lion at Venice 2014. Featuring Fabrizio Ferracane and Marco Leonardi (Like Water for Chocolate), Black Souls won a total of nine David di Donatello awards.
- Polish filmmaker Pawel Pawlikowski, whose Ida took home the 2015 Best Foreign Language Film Oscar.
- British filmmaker Lynne Ramsay, whose credits include the Tilda Swinton drama We Need to Talk about Kevin – and who almost got to direct Natalie Portman in Jane Got a Gun.
Below is the list of Horizons (Orizzonti) jury members.
- Jury President Jonathan Demme, U.S. filmmaker whose credits include Best Picture Academy Award winner The Silence of the Lambs, starring Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster, and Philadelphia, which earned Tom Hanks the 1993 Best Actor Oscar.
- Italian actress Anita Caprioli, whose movies include Paolo Genovese’s The Immature / Immaturi, with Raoul Bova and Barbora Bobulova, and Alice Rohrwacher’s Corpo celeste (“Celestial Body”).
- Hong Kong filmmaker Fruit Chan, whose Durian Durian (2000) and Hollywood Hong-Kong (2001) were in competition at Venice. Last year, Chan’s The Midnight After was screened at the Berlin Film Festival.
- French filmmaker Alix Delaporte, whose The Last Hammer Blow / Le dernier coup de marteau was presented in competition at the 2014 Venice Film Festival, earning Romain Paul the Marcello Mastroianni Prize.
- Spanish actress Paz Vega, whose movies include Julio Medem’s Sex and Lucia; James L. Brooks’ Spanglish, opposite Adam Sandler; and Pedro Almodóvar’s I’m So Excited.
Luigi De Laurentiis Award for Best Debut
The Luigi De Laurentiis Award for Best Debut a.k.a. Lion of the Future goes to the jury’s favorite debut feature screened at Venice’s various competition sections. The award comes with a cash prize of $100,000, to be divided equally between director and producer.
This year’s Luigi De Laurentiis jury consists of the following:
- Jury President and Italian filmmaker Saverio Costanzo, whose Hungry Hearts, starring Adam Driver and Alba Rohrwacher, competed for the Golden Lion last year. Costanzo took home a David di Donatello for Private (2005).
- U.S. filmmaker Charles Burnett (To Sleep with Anger, Killer of Sheep).
- Hong Kong producer and Hong Kong International Film Festival executive director Roger Garcia.
- French film critic, historian, and former Cinémathèque de Toulouse director Natacha Laurent.
- Mexican journalist and Morelia Film Festival founder / director Daniela Michel.
The Venice Film Festival will open with a screening of Baltasar Kormákur’s real-life-inspired Everest – a star-studded, big studio, 3D disaster thriller. Well, they gotta do something to attract the attention of the all-powerful U.S. media.
Keira Knightley. Robin Wright. Clive Standen. Sam Worthington. Elizabeth Debicki. Emily Watson. Tom Goodman-Hill. Michael Kelly. Martin Henderson. Vanessa Kirby. John Hawkes. Naoko Mori. Mia Goth. Mark Derwin. Thomas M. Wright. Micah Hauptman (as Micah A. Hauptman). Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson. Justin Salinger. Chris Reilly. Demetri Goritsas.
Everest screenplay by William Nicholson and Simon Beaufoy.
Venice Film Festival website.
Jake Gyllenhaal Everest 2015 image: Universal Pictures.