The Venice Film Festival has designated Julie Andrews the recipient of the 2019 Golden Lion for Career Achievement. The Mary Poppins and Sound Of Music star will receive the honor at the 76th Lido event which runs August 28-September 7.
Andrews responded today, “I am so honored to have been selected as this year’s recipient of the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement. The Venice Film Festival has long been recognized as one of the world’s most esteemed international film festivals. I thank the Biennale for this acknowledgement of my work and I look forward to being in that beautiful city in September for this very special occasion.”
Venice chief Alberto Barbera noted, “At a very young age, Ms Andrews made a name for herself in the music halls of London and, later, on Broadway thanks to her remarkable singing and acting talent. Her first Hollywood movie, Mary Poppins, gave her top-tier star status, which was later confirmed in another treasured film, The Sound of Music. Those two roles projected her into the Olympus of international stardom, making her an iconic figure adored by several generations of moviegoers.
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“Above and beyond the different interpretations that can be given to her two most famous films (and highlighting the transgressive value of her characters rather than their apparent conservatism), it must be remembered that Andrews went out of her way to avoid remaining confined as an icon of family movies. She accepted roles that were diverse, dramatic, provocative and imbued with scathing irony. For example, The Americanization Of Emily by Arthur Hiller, and the many movies directed by her husband Blake Edwards, with whom she formed a very profound and long-lasting artistic partnership, a marvelous example of human and professional devotion to a captivating esthetic project that prevailed over the commercial success of the individual movies. This Golden Lion is the well-deserved recognition of an extraordinary career which has admirably parsed popular success with artistic ambition, without ever bowing to facile compromises.”
Andrews made her feature debut in 1964’s Mary Poppins, winning an Oscar for her performance as the titular magical nanny. The following year, she earned an Oscar nomination for her portrayal of Maria Von Trapp in The Sound Of Music. She received her third Academy Award nomination for her dual role in Victor/Victoria. Most recently, Andrews was the voice of Kharaten in blockbuster Aquaman.
On stage, Andrews created the role of Eliza Doolittle in Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe’s Broadway musical My Fair Lady. Later, in 1961, she originated the role of Queen Guinevere in Lerner and Loewe’s musical Camelot.
A bestselling author (Mandy, The Last Of The Really Great Whangdoodles), Andrews joined with her daughter in 2003 to create The Julie Andrews Collection. To date they have released over thirty books with the current franchise, The Very Fairy Princess, launching at No. 1 on the New York Times Children’s Best Seller list. Andrews’ own biography, Home – A Memoir Of My Early Years, was released in 2008; the second installment, Home Work, is scheduled to be released this October.
TV series Julie’s Greenroom, co-created by Andrews and her daughter, recently launched on Netflix while Andrews also recently directed a revival of My Fair Lady at the Sydney Opera House before touring through Australia.
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