The Venice Film festival is due to unveil its full lineup on Wednesday this week for the 72nd running of the world’s oldest such event. So far, we know that Working Title and Universal’s Everest is on opening night duty September 2, out of competition, with a special out-of-competition screening of Johnny Depp-starrer Black Mass on deck for the first Friday. Venice has found renewed vigor in the past few years, highlighting movies that have gone on to awards-season glory such as Gravity and Birdman. While the two big-ticket titles thus far are running out of competition, we expect a robust roster of candidates to emerge on Wednesday. Judging those in the main section will be a jury led by Gravity helmer Alfonso Cuaron. His and other panels have just been filled out.
Joining Cuaron on the main jury are French author, screenwriter and director Emmanuel Carrère (La Moustache, upcoming Limonov); Cannes laureate Nuri Bilge Ceylan (Winter Sleep); Oscar-winner Pawel Pawlikowski (Ida); Italian director Francesco Munzi; Taiwan’s Hou Hsiao-hsien, winner of the Golden Lion at Venice for 1989’s A City Of Sadness, and this year’s Best Director in Cannes for The Assassin; German actress and former Cannes jury member, Diane Kruger; British director and screenwriter Lynne Ramsay; and Pitch Perfect 2 helmer/Hunger Games star, Elizabeth Banks.
The Horizons (Orizzonti) jury will be presided over by Jonathan Demme as previously announced. Supporting him are French director and screenwriter Alix Delaporte (Le Dernier Coup De Marteau); Spain’s Paz Vega (Sex And Lucia); Hong Kong director Fruit Chan; and Italian actress Anita Caprioli (Corpo Celeste).
Over on the “Luigi De Laurentiis” Venice Award for a Debut Film — Lion of the Future jury (which really needs a shorter name), Hungry Hearts helmer Saverio Costanzo is in charge. Also on the panel are Hong Kong producer Roger Garcia; French film critic and historian Natacha Laurent; American director Charles Burnett; and Mexican journalist Daniela Michel.
We’ll find out Wednesday which films festival director Alberto Barbera has selected for this year’s Biennale. If history has taught us anything, it’s that some of those titles are likely to keep on rolling from the Lido straight on down the major awards circuit.