October 2, 2022

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The Venice Film Festival opened with actress Catherine Deneuve and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky

The 79th edition of the Venice Film Festival, the oldest of the cinema festivals, opened on Wednesday evening with Catherine Deneuve as the guest of honor and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenski as the surprise guest.

At the Palace of Cinema on the Lido, the 78-year-old French star received the Golden Lion for his entire career.

Excited, in a red dress, the one who won the award for the best actress in 1998 said “thank you” to the public, after a tribute by the French filmmaker Arnaud Desplechin.

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Earlier, asked by AFP about the meaning of this reward, the actress, who continues to film, confessed: “We are not looking back. It’s not a refusal, we just don’t have time”.

President Volodymyr Zelensky took the stage with a video message urging the world of cinema to “don’t forget” a war that “it does not last 120 minutes, but 189 days“. At the end of his intervention, on a black background, the list of first names of children and adolescents (up to 18 years old) killed in the conflict, accompanied by their dates and places of birth, was displayed.

After the speeches and tributes, the cinema resumed its role with the official screening of the opening film, “White Noise” by New Yorker Noah Baumbach, adapted from a novel by writer Don DeLillo.

The 52-year-old filmmaker, author of “Frances Ha“, “The Meyerowitz Stories” or “Marriage Story”, brings together his fetish performers, his partner Greta Gerwig and Adam Driver. “It is a film about life and death. We have to accept that they go together“, he explained.

The selection of this film in the opening is a new recognition for the streaming giant Netflix, which produced it, and which this year presents four films and a series in the lagoon.

In total, 23 feature films (of which only 8 are by female directors) are in the competition for the Golden Lion, awarded on September 10.

Julianne Moore is the president of the jury.

Among the highlights of the festival is the arrival of Hollywood stars.

From Thursday, September 1, Cate Blanchett is scheduled to hit the steps for “Tar” by Tidd Field, where he plays a brilliant conductor, ahead of Timothée Chalamet arriving the next day. The Franco-American, who received the year’s accolades for “Dunes”, returns with “Bones and All”, the new film by Luca Guadagnino, the author of “Call Me By Your Name“.

Also, Penélope Cruz would arrive in Venice for two films, Isabelle Huppert and the British pop phenomenon Harry Styles, who plays in the film directed by his partner Olivia Wilde (“Don’t Worry Darling“).

One of the most awaited stars is probably the Cuban actress from “blond”, Ana de Armas, the new Marilyn Monroe. This fictional biopic, by Andrew Dominik (“The assassination of Jesse James by the coward Robert Ford“), is based on the story of the same title, “blond”, by the novelist Joyce Carol Oates.

Also eagerly awaited by moviegoers are the new films by Alejandro González Iñárritu (“The Revenant“, “Birdman“), by Darren Aronofsky (“Requiem for a Dream“, “Pi“), or by Joanna Hogg, with Tilda Swinton, or by Iranian Jafar Panahi and veterans Walter Hill and Paul Schrader.

The announced French authors are Rebecca Zlotowski, Romain Gavras. Also, the playwright Florian Zeller who, after the success of his company with Anthony Hopkins for “The Father”, presents “The Son”, another adaptation of one of his plays, this time with Hugh Jackman and Laura Dern.

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