Venice Film Festival

Source: La Biennale de Venezia, ASAC

Audrey Diwan collects the Golden Lion for ‘Happening’ at 2021 Venice Film Festival

French director Audrey Diwan’s abortion drama Happening (L’Eventement) has won the Golden Lion for best film in an historic night at the 2021 Venice Film Festival that marked the second consecutive year a film directed by a woman has won the top prize following Chloe Zhao’s triumph for Nomadland in 2020.


Source: Wild Bunch International


Wild Bunch handles international sales on Happening, which led an unprecedented sweep of Golden Lion, Silver Lion for directing and screenplay awards by female filmmakers.

Jane Campion took the directing prize for her Western The Power Of The Dog and Maggie Gyllenhaal won screenplay honours for her directorial debut The Lost Daughter.

Paolo Sorrentino’s Silver Lion The Hand Of God earned the Venice Silver Lion – grand jury prize on a night that boosted Netflix’s awards season prospects with The Hand Of God, The Power Of The Dog and The Lost Daughter all in its war chest.

Penelope Cruz claimed the Coppa Volpi best actress award for Pedro Almodovar’s Parallel Mothers which Sony Pictures Classics will release in the US, and John Arcilla took corresponding best actor honours for  On The Job: The Missing 8. Filippo Scotti, was named best young actor for The Hand Of God.

The honours for Diwan, Campion and Gyllenhaal extend a mighty run of form for women filmmakers at prestige festivals this year after Julia Ducournau became the first solo female director to win the Cannes Palme d’Or for Titane in July. (Campion’s The Piano shared the award in 1993 with Chen Kaige’s Farewell My Concubine.) On top of that, Chloe Zhao triumphed in the best film and directing categories at the Oscars in April for Nomadland.

2021 Venice Film Festival winners  

Golden Lion for best film  
Happening by Audrey Diwan

Silver Lion grand jury prize
The Hand Of God 
Dir: Paolo Sorrentino

Silver Lion for best director 
Jane Campion for The Power Of The Dog

Best screenplay 
Maggie Gyllenhaal for The Lost Daughter 

Coppa Volpi for best actor 
John Arcilla for  On The Job: The Missing 8

Coppa Volpi for best actress
Penelope Cruz for Parallel Mothers 

Special jury prize
Il Buco  
Dir: Michelangelo Frammartino

Lion of the Future award for best debut film 
Dirs: Monica Stan, George Chiper-Lillemark

Marcello Mastroianni Award for best young actor:
Filippo Scotti in The Hand Of God 

Horizons winners

Best film
Dir: Laurynas Bareiša

Best director 
Eric Gravel for A Plein Temps

Best actress
Laure Calamy for A Plein Temps

Best actor
Piseth Chhun for White Building 

Best screenplay
Peter Kerekes, Ivan Ostrochovský for 107 Mothers  

Special Jury Prize 
El Gran Movimiento
Dir: Kiro Russo 

Best first film
Dir:  Laurynas Bareiša.