Two hot Oscar prospects — “La La Land” and “Nocturnal Animals” — were among the winners at this year’s Venice film festival. “La La Land” leading lady Emma Stone won Best Actress and Tom Ford‘s atmospheric “Nocturnal Animals” claimed the grand jury prize. The jury, headed up by Oscar champ Sam Mendes, awarded the Golden Lion to “The Woman Who Left,” a black and white four-hour long drama from the Philippines.
Last year the top award here went to “Desde allá” (“From Afar”), a Venezuelan gay-themed drama from first-time director Lorenzo Vigas., over among others “Beasts of No Nation” and “The Danish Girl.” In 2014 the Swedish comedy “A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence” won the Golden Lion over “Birdman.” Even so, Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu‘s examination of an aging action star (Michael Keaton) looking to jumpstart his flagging movie career went on to sweep the Oscars.
The rest of the jury included four actresses [Gemma Arterton (England), Nina Hoss (Germany), Chiara Mastroianni (France) and Zhao Wei (China)], two more directors [Joshua Oppenheimer (USA) and Lorenzo Vigas (Venezuela)], Italian writer Giancarlo De Cataldo and American multi-hyphenate Laurie Anderson.
The other winners at the 73rd annual edition of the Venice film festival were:
Best Director (Silver Lion): Amat Escalante (“The Untamed”); Andrei Konchalovsky (“Paradise”)
Best Actor: Oscar Martínez (“The Distinguished Citizen”)
Best Screenplay: Noah Oppenheim (“Jackie”)
Special Jury Prize: “The Bad Batch”
Marcello Mastroianni Award (Best Young Actor): Paula Beer (“Frantz”)
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