Director Liliana Cavani awarded Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the Venice Film Festival

Liliana Cavani

 VENICE - The Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement will go to director Liliana Cavani at the 80th Venice International Film Festival. The decision was taken by the board which adopted the proposal of the Director of the Venice Film Festival, Alberto Barbera, said the organisers.

 "I'm overjoyed and grateful to the Biennale di Venezia for this wonderful surprise," said Cavani, who has participated in the Venice Film Festival since 1965 with Philippe Pétain: Trial at Vichy, which won the Lion of San Marco for best documentary.

 Liliana Cavani's other appearances at the Venice Film Festival include the films Francis of Assisi (1966), Galileo (1968), The Cannibals (1969), through to Ripley's Game (2002) and Clarisse (2012).

 Another Lifetime Achievement Lion was awarded to Hong Kong actor Tony Leung Chiu-wai. Tony Leung has starred in three Venice Golden Lion films: Sorrowful City (1989) by Hou Hsiao-hsien, Cyclo (1995) by Tran Anh Hung and Lust, Caution (2007) by Ang Lee.

 Speaking of Cavani, Festival Director Alberto Barbera commented, “One of the most emblematic protagonists of the New Italian Cinema of the 1960s, whose work has spanned over sixty years of show business history, Liliana Cavani is a versatile artist who frequents television, theatre and opera with the same unconventional spirit and intellectual ferment that have made her movies famous…”

 He continued: “Her mindset has always been nonconformist, free of ideological preconceptions, and decoupled from any type of brainwashing; it is driven by the constant search for a truth concealed in the most recessed and mysterious corners of the human soul, up to the edge of spirituality.”

 Tony Leung, says Barbera, “is a charismatic performer in the course of an exceptional transnational career which has evolved paralleling the expansion of global film circulation. Not only have Tony Leung’s roles spanned a great variety of genres, but also have bridged television, popular culture and art-cinema at different latitudes.”

 Barbera continued: “Recognised as one of the major actors of his generation, while maintaining the incredible versatility that first turned him into a film and pop star in Hong Kong in the 1980s, he has achieved a unique profile as a pan-Asian and global star confirming his presence within ever shifting screen cultures, deconstructing the traditional idea of male stardom and bringing compelling sensitivity to all his roles.”