Friday, September 11, 2015

12th Giornate Degli Autori - Venice Days Award Winners

Today section organizers announced the films that will be honored with the awards of the Venice fest autonomous section.

The Official Jury of Venice Days, headed by Laurent Cantet, has given the Venice Days Award among the films of the Official Selection to Early Winter by Michael Rowe. The jury was also composed by the participants to the program 28 Times Cinema of the European Parliament.
Here the motivation of the jury: The Jury appreciated the accomplished execution, the originality of the depiction of the ordinary life and a very confident mise en scène. The strong performance of the actors, combined with all these elements, created a strong empathy with characters who at first might seem unlikable.

French/Tunisian/Belgian co-production, A peine j'ouvre les yeux (As I Open My Eyes) by Leyla Bouzid has won the Europa Cinemas Label as Best European Film in the Giornate degli Autori/Venice Days. Award is given by a jury of four exhibitors from the network. 2015 marks the twelfth time the Label has been awarded in Venice. In receiving the Label, the film will benefit from promotional support from Europa Cinemas and better exhibition thanks to a financial incentive for network cinemas to include it in their program schedule.

The jury issued the following statement: "Leyla Bouzid has made a fresh and insightful feature debut set in her native Tunisia. It is refreshing to see the Arab middle class portrayed in a film that concentrates on the relationship between a daughter a rebellious young singer in a political rock band - and her mother in the period immediately before the Arab spring. The excellent character development avoids stereotypes, and the director's visual approach is strong. At a time when we in Europe are so aware of the refugee crisis, this film brings a sense of optimism and potential for progress for this area of the world."

The winning film was decided by a jury of four network exhibitors: Nancy J Garceau, Spain; Nico Marzano, UK; Krijn Meerburg, The Netherlands; and Renate Wur, Austria.

To check the complete list you can go to the post that has all the festival awards here or to the official site announcement here and here.

Winners are in *BLUE.

Official Selection
Opening Film: (*) El Desconocido (Retribution), Dani de la Torre, Spain
Closing Film: (*) The Daughter, Simon Stone, Australia
* (*) A peine j'ouvre les yeux (As I Open My Eyes) (aka Dieu protège ma fille), Leyla Bouzid, France, Tunisia and Belgium Label Europa Cinemas and People's Choice Awards Winner.
* (*) Arianna, Carlo Lavagna, Italy Best Young Actress Award Winner to Ondina Quandri and Prize Laguna SUD Best Italian Discovery
*Early Winter (aka Rest Home), Michael Rowe, Australia and Canada Venice Days Award Winner.
* (*) Island City, Ruchika Oberoi, India FEDEORA Best Young Director Award Winner
(*) Klezmer, Piotr Chrzan, Poland
La Memoria del Agua (The Memory of Water), Matías Bize, Chile
La Prima Luce (First Light), Vincenzo Marra, Italy and Chile
*Lolo, July Delpy, France Prize Laguna SUD Best Film Winner
* (*) Underground Fragrance, Song Pengfei, France and China FEDEORA Best Film Winner
Viva la sposa (Long Live the Bride), Ascanio Celestini, Italy, France and Belgium

President: Laurent Cantet, director, France

Special Events
Argentina (aka Zonda: Folclore Argentino), Carlos Saura, Argentina, Spain and France (documentary)
*Harry's Bar, Carlotta Cerquetti, Italy (documentary) Open Award Winner
Innocence of Memories - Orhan Pamuk's Museum and Istanbul, Grant Gee, UK, Ireland, and Italy (documentary)
(*) Ma, Celia Rowlson Hall, USA
Milano 2015, Elio, Roberto Bolle, Silvio Soldini, Walter Veltroni, Cristiana Capotondi, and Giorgio Diritti, Italy (documentary)
Viva Ingrid!, Alessandro Rossellini, Italy (documentary)

Miu Miu Women's Tales
#9 De Djess, Alice Rohrwacher, Italy
#10 Les 3 boutons, Agnès Varda, Italy and France

Special Projects
(*) Bangland, Lorenzo Berghella, Italy (animation)
Il paese dove gli alberi volano - Eugenio Barba e i giorni dell'Odin (The Country Where Trees Fly), Davide Barletti and Jacopo Quadri, Italy (documentary)
I sogni del lago salato, Andrea Segre, Italy (documentary)

(*) First Feature Film competes for Luigi De Laurentiis Award for Debut Film

Venice Days will run from September 2 to 12th and to read info about each of the films and events go official site here.  Believe that at least one movie (Arianna) from this section will compete for the Queer Lion this year. There are a few films that call my attention but none like Matías Bize's La Memoria del Agua as lead female role is played by Elena Anaya; also because cast and story, The Daughter seems could be interesting.

Check available info and trailers @MOC.

Section Trailer

For the first time the section catalog is available in digital form and here it is. Enjoy!!!

Yesterday organizers announced the eleventh film in section competitive lineup, so it's now official that the sidebar will be hosting the world premiere of Lolo by Julie Delphy.

Today the #Venezia72 collateral section announced their lineup that includes some interesting figures: 20 films from 15 countries, 8 are first films, 18 are world premieres and 8 are made by women filmmakers.

Those numbers suggest an international provenance but seems this year the section is proud of their local heritage when they say the lineup "is doubtless the most varied, unpredictable, international, and at the same time most "Italian" of lineups in the history of this by now well-established cinematic event promoted by the Italian filmmakers' associations (ANAC and 100autori) in agreement with the Venice Biennale."

And continue to say some perhaps surprising (at least for me) statements like:
"Every year, ahead of the leading film festivals, the media have a field day arguing over the "national quotas" for each lineup: too many German films at the Berlinale, Cannes top-heavy with French auteurs, Venice playing favorites with its Italian directors. And we're proud to uphold the tradition this year: we'll be delighted if the three Italian films on Venice Days' competitive lineup hit the headlines. We're taking a well-pondered gamble on a debut filmmaker (Carlo Lavagna) whose fresh approach will do wonders for the image of Italy's emerging helmers; we're also betting on an important new film by Ascanio Celestini, back in Venice as an auteur filmmaker this time around; and welcoming Vincenzo Marra, a major, well-loved director who will present what is perhaps his most personal, passionate effort to date. In addition to this roster, we also will be turning our spotlight on experimental works that attest to a thriving, original film culture, thanks in no small part to our collaboration with SIAE, redoubling its efforts at Venice Days this year by supporting the "Venice Workshop The Seasons of Italian Cinema", a project in which Venice Days will be involved for the next three years."

Lastly, more from what they say:
For once, we've decided to state out front that our program is inspired by a two-fold underlying theme. On the one hand, the films on our line-up bring generational clashes to the fore, since we are aware, at different levels, that they represent a crucial dilemma today as in the past, a sort of tear in the social fabric which shatters the certainties of both those trying to find their way and those defending what they have and are afraid of losing.
On the other hand, stylistically speaking, independent cinema can once again boast an originality in terms of its gaze and its narratives that rivals that of its predecessors. After viewing hundreds of films submitted to Venice Days, we get the distinct impression of a freshness of tone, remarkable courage and an ethical power that all go into pushing the boundaries of the cinematic genre. It's another reason why we had no qualms about following up last year's "big-name directors" at Venice Days with this year's gamble on debut filmmakers and others actors as well as auteurs who have reinvented themselves and stopped playing it safe.

Perhaps I'm a bit naive but I do not see Cannes as a "French Cinema Festival" or Berlinale as a "German Cinema Festival" or San Sebastian as "Spain Cinema Festival" but sometimes perhaps too often I do see Venice as "Italian Cinema Festival" as unlike the other countries, Italy tends to have only one large festival with only one opportunity to showcase local cinema. But let me be clear, I enjoy very much Italian Cinema and do not mind if Venice could become THE place to showcase Italian films, but obviously organizers could lose much if they do it, so that's why a collateral section like Venice Days is the best place to talk and showcase Italian cinema. What do you think?

If you wish to read the complete press release go section official site here. Eleven films will be in the running for the Venice Days Award; these films will also be eligible for the BNL People's Choice Award, while all the first films premiering at Venice Days are eligible for the Lion of the Future Luigi De Laurentiis Award for Best Debut Film at the Venice Film Festival. In addition, the European films in our official selection will be vying for the Label Europa Cinemas prize assigned by a jury comprised of member exhibitors. Lastly, the jury of FEDEORA film critics will assign its own prizes for best film and best debut filmmaker.

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