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Venice to award Golden Lion

VENICE: The Hollywood strike may have robbed Venice of its usual bevy of stars, but the world’s oldest film festival, which concludes Saturday (9th of Sept 2023), proved it is still a launchpad for major awards contenders and political statements.

From the biopics of Enzo Ferrari, Priscilla Presley, and Leonard Bernstein to devastating migrant dramas, there have been some very strong contenders at the 80th edition of the festival on Lido island.
The year’s Golden Lion is being decided by a jury led by director Damien Chazelle (“La La Land”) and including Jane Campion and Laura Poitras, who won last year with Big Pharma documentary “All the Beauty and the Bloodshed”.
The last of 23 films in competition was “Memory”, which screened on Friday and could be a last-minute contender for awards with its moving and morally complex tale of a recovering alcoholic befriending a man with dementia.
Its star, Jessica Chastain, was one of the few Hollywood stars able to attend the festival as the movie was given an exemption by striking unions because it was made outside the studio system.
Chastain backed the strikes, saying actors had been silenced for too long on “workplace abuse” and “unfair contracts”.
Adam Driver was also able to come for the independent film “Ferrari” from Michael Mann and also backed the strikes.
But director David Fincher, who premiered his assassin movie “The Killer” starring Michael Fassbender and has been closely associated with Netflix, triggered controversy by saying he understood “both sides”.


M M Alam

M. M. Alam is a Pakistan-based working journalist since 1981. Karachi University faculty gold medalist Alam began his career four decades ago by writing for Dawn, Pakistan’s highest circulating English daily. He has worked for region’s leading publications, global aviation periodicals including Rotors (of USA) and vetted New York Times as permanent employee of daily Express Tribune. Alam regularly covers international aviation and defense-related events including Salon Du Bourget (France), Farnborough (United Kingdom), Dubai (UAE). Alam has reported thousands of events and interviewed hundreds of people in Pakistan, UAE, EU, UK and USA. Being Francophone Alam also coordinates with a number of French publications.